A Beginner’s Guide to Commercial Real Estate Marketing on LinkedIn
LinkedIn is, without a doubt, the most powerful and active business social network and it should form an integral part of any good commercial real estate digital marketing strategy. There are arguably thousands of prospects operating their own LinkedIn accounts, but finding those potential leads and transforming them into your next professional opportunity can sometimes be difficult.
Because of the importance of LinkedIn, every commercial real estate firm and professional should be using this social network. It is the place to be in order to actively engage with both clients, investors, and potential prospects, and there is nowhere better to build brand awareness, promote property listings and engage in industry chatter.
However, it is important to recognize that LinkedIn differs from many other social media channels. To get the most out of your LinkedIn efforts there are some best practices you should be following – tips that will allow you to better attract attention, engage prospects, and drive visits to your property listings.
How you can start to use LinkedIn as part of your Commercial Real Estate Marketing Strategy:
1. Create a personal profile and company page
First things first. If you’re completely new to LinkedIn, you first need to set up a personal profile page. A company profile can only go so far, and will get very little traction or views without connections to the real people that work there.
A personal LinkedIn profile is, for all intents and purposes, your online resume. Be sure to include all relevant experience and skills as well as a professional looking headshot so people can easily find you (a ghost profile image is a bit strange in this day and age). If you are comfortable doing so, ask colleagues and existing clients to write a recommendation for you using the built-in feature. This will give your profile a boost.
A company page will extend reach by providing a thread for all existing and current coworkers, clients, and other connections with another means to find you and get information on your business. Make sure your company page is linked from your personal profile as your place of employment. Everyone else in the office should do the same to increase the reach of the company page.
Make sure to also customize your public LinkedIn URL to make it easier to add to your resume or email signature.
2. Find your existing business contacts
When you attend an event, go to a meeting, or are introduced by a colleague, attempt to find your new connection on LinkedIn within a couple of days. Then send them a connection request, along with a quick introductory message or a request to have a phone call or grab a cup of coffee (maybe virtually, all things considered). LinkedIn isn’t about gathering numbers of connections, it’s about the value in making those connections, so do what you can to really foster connections with the people you link up with.
LinkedIn makes it easy to find contact by syncing up with your professional email address. You can search and sync your contacts by going to this link and following the given directions.
3. Join a few relevant groups
LinkedIn Groups can be tricky because there are a large number of people trying to scam their way into success via groups and sadly that just makes it harder for everyone!
However, LinkedIn groups are a fantastic resource because they are full of very targeted niche groups – no matter what you’re looking for, there is a group for that. Joining a few relevant groups can be a powerful tool to position yourself as a thought leader and find new prospects within your specific region.
When you’re in a group (most of them are heavily administered and require permission to join), make sure you contribute regularly. Comment on other people’s posts, share articles you think are pertinent to the group, and be a good group member. And of course only individuals can join groups, not company pages.
Some groups to think about joining include:
- Certified Commercial Investment Members (CCIM)
- International Council of Shopping Centers (ICSC)
- Commercial Real Estate Referral Network
- Commercial Real Estate Investment, Development, & Property Management
- The Commercial Real Estate Network
- Commercial Real Estate & DeFi Investors Group
4. Create and share original content
LinkedIn is the perfect space to demonstrate industry expertise. Sharing and creating original content will help build your audience and cache within the commercial real estate industry. For example, you could share links to relevant industry/regional articles, provide updates on your business through your company profile, or post your thoughts on company updates, emerging industry news and trends from your personal account.
A good example: This post by N3 Real Estate, which includes a dynamic stop motion video of a featured property.
5. Write relevant and useful LinkedIn posts
As with any social media channel, LinkedIn is a busy online space. If you want to stand out, you need to make sure you write carefully crafted posts that add value to the reader. Does your post answer a question or provide a tip? Your content should be actionable and useful – it should speak to the core needs of your target audience. Other people may see the posts, but make sure you’re offering real advice they can use in their lives.
A good example: This post from Ashley Capital with the latest statistical industry information for a specific region, and for a specific quarter.
Tips for getting more views on your LinkedIn posts
You’re writing great posts…but nobody sees them. Why? The issue could be that you aren’t doing enough to generate visibility and promote the post.
As with other social channels, LinkedIn posts have a finite window during which they can thrive and get seen by a large number of users. This means you need to optimize and promote correctly – creating and publishing the post is only half off the job!
Here are five simple things you should be doing with every post you make:
- Tag colleagues and team members
Engage with the people most likely to engage with your posts – coworkers, colleagues, and team members.
- Mention your clients, partners and tenants
Use the tagging functionality to mention any featured tenants in your post. This will ensure that they see the post (and hopefully share it)!
- Engage with comments
Be sure to engage with comments on your posts to keep the conversation going.
- Engage with other posts
Spend a consistent amount of time each day or week commenting on, liking, and reading other people’s posts. This will help you recognize what works on the platform and what doesn’t, and it will also help you start to get noticed.
- Use relevant hashtags
Relevant is the keyword here! Hashtags on LinkedIn help users discover and participate in the topics and interests you’re mentioning, such as commercial real estate, CRE, marketing, etc.
- Connect personal and company pages
Make sure your company page is linked from your personal profile as your place of employment. This needs to be done by as many people in your business as possible.
One of the most important things to remember is that LinkedIn, unlike other social channels, is purely professional. It’s specifically designed for building careers, making professional connections, and sharing industry news. In order to thrive, you must ensure that your activity on LinkedIn adds value, builds your reputation within the commercial real estate industry, and is truly helpful and relevant.