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Real Estate Channels In Social Media- The Answer to the Real Estate Social Media ROI Question?


Elevator Pitch

There’s a lot of hype, and a lot of unanswered questions revolving around social media in that there is a paradigm shifting in communication, advertising, and other spaces including real estate.  The question ultimately is can you track and verify ROI when it comes to social media– I think the answer is yes, but not in the way many have gone about it.

I’ve had this conversation with many people over the past 6 months about tracking ROI and at the time, no study, nor documentation really existed, however, in recent months this all changed with Dell, when they bragged about their $1 Million in sales from Twitter.

Interestingly enough, it was done through channels with channel specific deals which leads me to Trulia, Zillow, and local MLS Boards, as well as FSBO, REO, and other property aggregates and large Brokers themselves as a means to move volume inventory.

The idea of disruption and disintermediation could play a role in this type of channel aggregation to the advantage of large Brokerage houses that flows down to the agent as an incentive to promote and participate in social media channels.  This is only one of many channel scenarios that need to be fleshed out.

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Channels- channels on specific targets being the beginning of the answer to real estate and social media above and beyond the agent but allow the agent the opportunity to participate with their particular social spheres.

I’m posing this question to the general audience because it’s what I’ll be focusing on in the coming weeks as I reach out to develop test strategies around this concept.

If you’re interested in dialogue on this issue, let’s do so.  I’m looking at several models outside of the real estate space for models that could be adapted.

Would agents participate if media companies did the promoting?

Would Brokers sign on if volume was part of the equation?

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Would media companies make the investment if it meant playing a value added role to the Broker?

I’ve got a million questions and a million ideas.

Benn Rosales is the Founder and CEO of The American Genius (AG), national news network. Before AG, he founded one of the first digital media strategy firms in the nation has received the Statesman Texas Social Media Award and is an Inman Innovator Award winner. He has consulted for numerous startups (both early- and late-stage), and is well known for organizing the digital community through popular offline events. He does not venture into the spotlight often, rather he believes his biggest accomplishments are the talent he recruits and develops, so he gives all credit to those he's empowered.



  1. Jim Rake

    May 5, 2009 at 3:04 pm

    Looking forward to the discussion. But the driver may end up being… guessed it, “Show Me The MONEY!”

    But, all involved will likely benefit.

  2. Missy Caulk

    May 5, 2009 at 3:38 pm

    Benn, I am sure it will be awesome if you are thinking it up.:) But, I have no idea what you are talking about …..LOL

  3. Ken Brand

    May 5, 2009 at 4:31 pm

    Yeah, it’s sorta like the HBO show “Deadwood” – the wild, wild, west, everyone trying to figure out how stay in charge, stay independent while harnessing the power and dealing with the attendant obesity of big business.

    Like Missy, I’m not sure what your getting at and I’m not sure anyone knows what they’re getting at, it’s sorta like holding mercury in the palm of your hand.

    In any event, my first 2cent reaction is that everything boils down to content. If it’s compelling, interesting, remarkable, seductive, informative, etc., people will consume and share it, presumably they’ll even buy it. What I’m seeing is a massive herd of clueless bumblers jumping on the band wagon and flogging the hell out of it…without forethought.

    On the bright side I imagine the whiz-bangers will shine, prosper and figure it out.

    So what’s the plan big Benn….I’d like to hear more.

  4. Rob Hahn

    May 6, 2009 at 12:39 am

    So glad you posted this, Benn. It’s definitely a conversation worth having, then having again, and then questioning all of the previous conversations and having again. Until we get to the truth.

    I’ll think about a response and post it on NROB.


  5. Joe Loomer

    May 6, 2009 at 6:08 am

    Awesome post and one that hits at the heart of the Realtor in this market. The bottom line is “leading with revenue.” In our market center, we hold training sessions – led by one of our top producing agents – on using social media to further business.

    A perfect example is creating a business page for yourself (or your team) on Facebook, and using it to push your message and your listings to the world. By including relevant content on market conditions (national, local, and macro and micro levels), this agent shows us how to gain concrete leads. We even post virtual tour videos of homes in our area – and the business page allows you to track visitors (something I believe the personal pages do not offer).

    Since this is technically free (other than the time investment), it saves brokers money too.

  6. Tim White

    May 6, 2009 at 7:42 pm

    not sure why my comment yesteday was not publsihed–pretty harmless comment about breaking news sites which was entirely relevant to the discussion. What was it that I said that didn’t make it past your moderation process? Seriously.

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