Digital real estate is defined in many ways, but generally it refers to your virtual presence on the internet, including social media accounts, website domains, email messages, and other digital mediums to which you contribute, control or that have your identity represented. For most of us today, social media represents a large portion of our digital real estate, including these platforms:
Facebook is perhaps the most well-known social media site. It allows users to share statuses, photos, videos, and comments on their own posts and on the posts of others. Facebook can be used for personal or business purposes, and can be useful in communicating and connecting with current and potential clients, as well as for sharing business news, updates, and products. According to Facebook, as of December 2018, there were 1.52 billion daily active users and 2.32 billion monthly active users.
A photo and video sharing app with comments and filters, Instagram reports 500 million daily active users and over one billion active monthly users. Instagram focuses largely on images, and posts are often shorter and more concise than those found on Facebook, and comments can be enabled.
This social media platform allows users to post short messages called “tweets” as well as to comment on the posts of others. As of the third quarter of 2018, Twitter had 326 million monthly active users worldwide.
According to LinkedIn, the site is the world's largest professional network with more than 562 million users. The company describes its mission as connecting the world’s professionals to make them more productive and successful.
Snapchat is a mobile app that allows users to share videos and pictures that disappear after a brief time. As of the second quarter of 2018, Snapchat had about 188 million daily active users.
An online platform where users can share videos and comments. As of May 2018, YouTube had 1.8 billion logged-in monthly viewers.
Users can upload, save, sort, and manage images and ideas, known as “pins”, and videos on screens known as pinboards, as well as view the pinboards of others. According to Pinterest, 250 million people use the site each month.
Other digital real estate can include:
- Websites, whether a page on your broker’s website or your own domain
- Email and text campaigns and communications
- Personal and business blogs
Since your digital real estate can be an important tool in gathering sales leads, communicating with current and potential customers, and projecting your professional image, it’s important to manage it well. Here are some tips:
- Make an appraisal of your digital real estate periodically. Look at all the sites where you have a presence, and evaluate which ones are serving you well and which you could manage better or perhaps do without altogether.
- Start thinking about your digital real estate as a whole. How do the platforms work together to portray you and your services? Could you be using them differently to make a better impact? Which platforms do you use the most and which get the most engagement from others?
- Consider getting help managing your digital real estate. A professional marketer with digital experience may be able to help you leverage your digital real estate for better results.
- Maintain your digital real estate. To raise your profile, it’s important to make regular posts, comment frequently on other posts, and to keep platforms and sites updated.
One of the easiest ways to keep your digital real estate updated is to frequently share content that might be of interest to others in your networks. You can find a variety of articles on topics that will interest homeowners and real estate clients on the American Home Shield® Home Matters blog. Feel free to share articles that you find there, and talk to your local AHS® Account Executive about content suggestions, too.