Social Media Is not the Solution to the Real Estate Crisis

May
2009
25

posted by on Prospecting & SOI

Well, duh, you say. But you’d never know it with all the fuss over whatever latest & greatest way there is for us to all bore each to death with announcements of listings stay in touch. As I wrote last month, I’ve even been told that “If I don’t Twitter, I’ll fail.” (as a real estate agent? As a writer? As a human bean?)

I’m among the crowd who “just doesn’t get it.” Yeah, yeah, yeah, I know – those of you IN the know are tired of hearing that from those of us who are apparently too lazy or stupid to figure IT out, so over the weekend, I dived in and created a Twitter account. After much cursing and venting, I am now an official Twitterer… and I still say “I don’t get it.”twitter

But whether or not Jennifer is too dumb to Get It is not the point of my blog today. (To read my point, visit Marty LaChance’s featured blog – he says it beautifully and I’ll just say “Uh, what HE said.“)

My point (aside from the one Marty beat me to) is to say that we in America have a crisis. An economic crisis, a real estate crisis, a mortgage crisis. No kidding, right? And I promise you, my friends, that the solution to our collective crises is NOT to be found on Twitter, Facebook or LinkedIn. No, not even if all users “really know how to use social media.”

I believe that we in the real estate community have a tremendous opportunity in front of us to both help solve the crises that have crippled our industry, and once and for all prove our value to the suspicious general public who has long wondered what on earth we DO for those breathtaking amounts of money.

  • We can properly price our listings.
  • We can refuse (politely and respectfully, of course) to accept overpriced listings so that our market doesn’t appear even more sluggish than it already is.
  • We can help our sellers prepare their homes for market and make sure they understand the realities of BEING on the market (so they don’t innocently sabotage our efforts).
  • We can understand the nuances of FHA financing, or have a relationship with a fantastic mortgage broker who does.
  • We can think creatively and be able to communicate our epiphanies to the people who need to help us implement them.
  • We can take great photos.
  • We can own lockboxes that work.
  • We can stay on top of our market.

In a nut, we can do our jobs. We can be exceptional real estate agents. We can do what it takes to get houses sold and closed.

None of which has anything to do Twittering. Oh, I understand that social media is not intended to sell more houses – it’s touted (in our industry at least) as a prospecting medium. A way to stay in touch with the people we know – and there’s nothing wrong with that! But, as Marty so eloquently says in his blog “Twitter is useful for delivering breaking news…real estate is not breaking news.”

So, enjoy the relationships you build on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn or MySpace. But please don’t forget that social media is probably not the answer to selling that lingering listing or getting your FHA buyer to closing. If we can do more of THAT, we CAN positively affect the economy. And then we’ll sell lots more houses!

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