HGAR, OneKey MLS Event Tackled How Social Media Platforms are Transforming Real Estate Marketing

HGAR, OneKey MLS Event Tackled How Social Media Platforms are Transforming Real Estate Marketing
Top row from left: Brian D. Tormey, NTP, President, TitleVest; Noah Rosenblatt, founder and CEO, UrbanDigs; Leah Caro, president and principal broker at Park Sterling Realty and member of the Board of Managers, OneKey MLS; Bottom row, from left: Katie Brinkley, social media strategist and owner of Next Step Social Communications; Alex Montalenti, real estate technology coach and co-founder and CRO, Real Grader; and Jason Saft, founder of Staged to Sell Home and licensed real estate salesperson, Compass. PHOTO BY JOHN VECCHIOLLA

NEW YORK—Top real estate professionals joined social media strategists to talk tech and give a download on the latest trends industry professionals can use to manage transactions, attract clients and close deals at a virtual panel on April 15 hosted by the Hudson Gateway Association of Realtors, Inc. (HGAR) and OneKey MLS.

Hundreds of industry professionals tuned in for “Getting the Deal Done: Real Estate Tech – Tapping Into Trendy Apps and Other Tools of the Trade,” which featured Katie Brinkley, a social media strategist and owner of Next Step Social Communications, a digital marketing agency in Littleton, CO; Alex Montalenti, a real estate technology coach and co-founder and CRO, Real Grader, a digital branding agency in Manhasset; Jason Saft, founder of Staged to Sell Home, a home staging and marketing firm, and a licensed real estate salesperson at Compass, New York City; and Noah Rosenblatt, the founder and CEO of UrbanDigs, a real-estate analytics firm, New York City.

“Our industry has seen so many changes over the past year, and the landscape continues to change,” said Leah Caro, president and principal broker at Park Sterling Realty in Bronxville, N.Y., and member of the Board of Managers of OneKey MLS, the regional multiple listing service for New York. “As our industry evolves, it’s so important we identify the right tools to engage the consumer and ensure our messaging resonates in a crowded space.”

The discussion was moderated by Brian D. Tormey, NTP, president of TitleVest, a leading New York City-based provider of title insurance and related real estate services. The hour-long session focused on the value of using Google’s local service ads and social networking apps like Clubhouse and Instagram to engage viewers and prospects, promote listings and build an audience of customers and referrals.

“The number-one place to get reviews right now is Google,” said Montalenti. “Some of the top producers in the country are moving their review strategy to getting Google reviews. Every agent needs to have their own Google business page, their own presence. It doesn’t compete with your brokerage—it’s complementary to it and it actually builds SEO for everyone. So, Realtors, this is a wake-up call—get on Google.”

With so many options out there—Google, Facebook, Instagram, Tik Tok, LinkedIn—the panel was asked how to determine what works best for each user’s needs.

“To create natural engagement, you have to find the platform that feels authentic,” said Saft. “For me, that’s Instagram. My work is visually driven and I’m able to tell a visual story of how we’re transforming apartments and making an impact on ‘before and after’. And, because it’s owned by Facebook it’s easy to transfer that information to Facebook, so you’re getting a two-for-one. That’s the key to generate business—finding the right platform, doubling down and finding the messaging that works for your audience.”

Panel members weighed in on the audio-based social media app Clubhouse and best practices for using the app, which is invitation-only and currently available on iOS.

“Clubhouse is taking social media by storm,” said Brinkley, noting that finding the right people to follow is essential. “It’s the authentic way to make new connections at light speed. You’re able to get on stage or connect with people in a room faster than ever. You have an opportunity to hear some incredible speakers on different topics that can help grow your business—for free. If you’re a Realtor, it’s a great spot because you have the ability to grow your network.”

Rosenblatt advised attendees to leverage data and technology to take on an “advisory role” for the long-term. “It’s all about the message, so become an expert on turning data into the right message,” he said. “We are in a once-in-a-lifetime situation. The Federal Reserve printed a lot of money—trillions and trillions of dollars. That’s going to be inflationary. Real estate is a hedge against inflation. Get the message across to your clients about the value of real estate, especially in New York City, as a longer-term investment opportunity for a market that went the other direction as national housing markets soared.”

“Getting the Deal Done” is part of the “Be Your Best” webinar series created by HGAR and OneKey™ MLS, to help Realtors and agents navigate the changing landscape amid the pandemic. The event was sponsored by TitleVest.

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