As the saying goes, it takes a village. That’s the idea behind crowdsourcing, which has become an increasingly popular way for Real Estate Agents to harness the communal power of the Internet to help manage and market their businesses.
Essentially, crowdsourcing brings together a group of people to address a challenge or answer a question. For Real Estate Agents, using a crowdsourcing approach offers a way to compile useful information and advice from prospects, customers, and colleagues and then act upon it in a highly efficient and responsive manner.
In the real estate world, crowdsourcing can take several forms. Here’s a look at a few of the main ones.
Crowdsourcing for Prospects and Clients
It’s not uncommon for people to ask their friends for suggestions on what to read, where to eat, and even which Real Estate Agent to use. In fact, Hubspot found that 61% of consumers use search engines to learn more about products before buying, and there’s a 71% likelihood of purchase when referred via social media.
To harness the power of social sharing, invite prospects and clients to post their homebuying experiences on your website. Take it one step further by encouraging clients to write reviews of your team and any other professionals (Loan Officers, home inspectors, etc.) that may have facilitated their home purchase and post them across the social channels they use regularly. This can introduce you to vast numbers of untapped social circles.
Maximize the impact by using a site like Vidrack.com to encourage clients to record the highlights of their home-buying journey. Then, share these videos with your prospects, clients, and followers via your website and your firm’s social channels. Video is an especially engaging medium, with user-generated pieces ranking among the most popular content types on social networks.
Crowdsourcing Service Providers
Crowdsourcing is also commonly used to contract out everyday tasks—from website maintenance to administrative tasks. Having access to this type of on-demand pool of talent helps you contain your overhead expenses, which is particularly attractive when you are just starting out, while helping you achieve a high degree of professionalism.
Crowdsourcing Industry Expertise
The old adage that “knowledge is power” remains a valid concept, and that power is demonstrated in how effectively you share what you know with others. For instance, you can join social channels frequented by other Real Estate Agents, such as those you’ll find on LinkedIn, to pool your collective knowledge and assist each other when challenges arise. Alternatively, you can create your own channel; invite Real Estate Agents you know or admire to join; and then raise issues, seek input, or use your own experience to benefit others. Either way, you’ll be part of a lively discussion that keeps you in touch with your local market’s interests, regulatory changes, and needs. It can also further your image as a thought leader.
Now more than ever, there is power in numbers. Today’s technologies enable you to tap into a wide range of ideas and specialized capabilities within online real estate communities.