What is social proof and how can you use it to grow your real estate business?

What strategies do you have in place to market to your ideal clients and get ahead of your competition? If you’re like many real estate agents, you spend the majority of the time when you’re not actively selling a home trying to find new clients who need to buy or sell. This takes up valuable time and energy and, after getting a new client, you find yourself back at square one. Wouldn’t it be better to let others do the selling for you so you could focus on what you love doing—buying and selling homes? It’s possible when you harness the power of social proof. Here is what social proof is and how it can take your marketing to the next level.

What is Social Proof?

Social proof is a phenomenon where people look for reference to determine how to behave in a certain situation. For example, if someone is trying to decide which realtor to select to help them sell a home, they will look to their peers, those they look up to, or recognized experts in the industry to show or tell them who they would select (or have already selected) in the same situation. They want to see proof that you’ve done a good job for others so they will know you’ll do a good job for them.

What are Different Types of Social Proof?

There are different types of ways to leverage social proof for your real estate business. Social proof-based word-of-mouth has long been considered one of the best forms of advertising, but you need to find ways to drive that word-of-mouth for it to be effective. Here are some examples of social proof:

■ Ratings and reviews. Positive reviews on Zillow, Facebook, Google, and Yelp are a powerful form of social proof. Studies have shown that 91% of those looking for products or services read online reviews and nearly 84% of those people actually trust the information in reviews as much as they trust recommendations from their friends.

■ Social media. Being active on social media and having numerous likes, shares, and comments from those your users like, trust, or look up to is an important part of social proof.

■ Results. Sold properties, years of experience, and past transactions are social proof that you’ve been in business helping others and will do the same for those seeking your services.

■ Testimonials. Testimonials—especially video testimonials—of happy past clients talking about their experience with you are another example of using social proof to your advantage.

■ Useful local content. When you share information about the neighborhood you serve that is educational or informative, you show that you are knowledgeable about the area and can be trusted to provide solid advice.

Why is Using Social Proof Important?

When you effectively use social proof, you let others do the selling for you. This builds trust within your market, you’re seen as more credible, and you don’t have to work as hard to find new clients. With social proof, you can establish yourself as an authority in the local real estate scene and can easily overcome objections and grow your agency. When you have social proof working for you, you no longer have to “sell” yourself because you’ll have past and current clients and other trustworthy individuals doing all the work for you.

Using Social Proof to Market Your Agency and Listings

When developing your website, landing pages, and advertising campaigns, utilizing social proof should be high on your priority list. Here are some ways you can build it into your marketing strategies:

■ Curate positive online reviews. To get the most online reviews, you need to have a system of asking for them from your past clients. There are programs available that automate the process of asking for reviews that allow you to review them, respond to them, then push them out to multiple review sites for maximum exposure.

■ Maintain an active social media presence. Being active on social media means posting regularly (at least three or four times a week) and focusing on posting content that is helpful, informative, or educational as opposed to just selling your services or posting listings and open houses.

■ Make sure your website has information on your background. Too many agents skimp on information under the bio section of their websites. This is the place to talk about how many years you’ve been in the business, how many clients you’ve helped buy or sell a home, and how many transactions your team has conducted.

■ Ask for and facilitate testimonials. Even if your clients have an amazing experience with you, they won’t offer up testimonials—you need to ask for them. To get the powerful video testimonials that are powerful forms of social proof, offer to have a videographer come to their home or office to film them. Then use the testimonials on your website and social media to share the positive experience with your prospects and others in the industry.

Working with an Expert

Using social proof to market your agency and get more clients is one of the most powerful ways you can grow your team. However, it’s time consuming and you have to know what you’re doing. Instead of taking time away from your business and what you do best, you need to work with an expert who has experience in developing social proof-based marketing strategies. Some larger teams can employ in-house marketing specialists who can develop campaigns for them. If you have a smaller team, you likely won’t have this luxury and should instead consider partnering with an expert in the real estate marketing industry. When you work with a marketing agency that has proven methods of utilizing social proof to grow their clients’ businesses, you can take the stress off your shoulders and put your energy into serving your clients.

Ready to work with a team who can help you use social proof to its fullest potential? Reach out to the team at Luxury Presence. We’d love to partner with you.