Tips On When To Post Real Estate Content And A Property Data API Tool For What To Post On Social Media

property data API

Sample charts from a Property Data API.

There are two basic elements to a successful social media campaign and a Property Data API can be a big asset with one of them.

Facebook has 2 billion monthly users.  Instagram has 1 billion. Twitter has 326 million users every month. YouTube has 1.9 billion.

These are incredible numbers.

What’s even more incredible is that real estate brokers and agents have access to this enormous audience for FREE.

Okay, that’s the obvious point.

But naturally, there’s a catch.

Since these platforms are free, the competition is intense. Not only from other brokers and agents, but also just for people’s attention in general. With all those gazillion posts flying by their eyeballs every day, it’s is very difficult to catch people’s attention.

Best times to post social media

As we said, there are two very important and simple elements to every social media post.

They are:

What you post.

When you post it.

Now, what you post is a major task that really requires almost a degree in social media to succeed. But Home Junction has a suite of tools you can use to maximize your posts. We’ll get to that in a second.

But let’s start with the easy part.

If you are going to be fully active in social media, then you need to know the most optimal times to post your content.

There are two parts to this equation.

The standard part and the part that is specific to your company and your marketplace.

Here are some thoughts on what experts believe are some best times to post social media:

Facebook: one of the best times to post on Facebook is between 1 pm and 4 pm. That’s because many people will check their Facebook accounts during work, when things slow down in the afternoon.

The best days for Facebook posts are Thursday, Friday during the work week and Saturday and Sunday on weekends. Because Facebook is a place for friends and family, the highest level of engagement will be on weekends when people have the time to interact with followers and will share and like their content.

Instagram: Instagram is similar to Facebook, and in fact is owned by Facebook. But users interact differently and seek something different from this image-based platform.

Therefore, there are other times to post that are more optimal.

For Instagram post your content during lunch from 11 am to 1 pm. You can also do this again later at night from 7 pm to 9 pm.

The best days are surprisingly, Monday, Wednesday and Thursday. Sunday for some crazy reason, is the worst day.

Twitter: this platform is different as well. For one, the format has a limit of 280 characters (recently increased from 140).

The optimal times to post on Twitter are during lunch from 12 pm to 1 pm. Weekdays are the best for posts and to generate engagement. The  best day of the work week is Wednesday. Conversely, Twitter posts on weekends are not as effective.

LinkedIn: this platform as you know is mainly for business and professionals. Therefore, the best time for posts are between 10 am and 11 am after business people get through their email and compile their daily to-do lists.

Tuesday through Thursday are the best days. Most people are too busy on Monday. And, business people generally do not check out LinkedIn on weekends.

Pinterest: then there’s Pinterest, a whole different arrangement. This platform is very popular with moms. So, for them Saturday is an active day on Pinterest. Sundays are good too.

Interestingly, much different than other social media, some of the best times for this platform is between 8 pm and 11 pm. Understandly, that when moms get to take a break.

So now you have your suggested best times.

But as we know, all marketing campaigns are different because all target audiences are different.

So, the best advice for your own social media posts is to try these standards, but also try other times of the day. See which days and hours generate the most engagement in the form of shares, likes and impressions in general (you can find these analytics in the admin sections of each platform).

Property Data API provides content consumers want

Now the content part.

There’s a large volume of information out there about viral marketing and how to create posts that generate the most interest.

But when it comes to real estate, one of the best strategies you can deploy is the use of hyper-local real estate data.

It’s very easy to gather this data.

Just contact a national data aggregator such as Home Junction. We gather thousands of datasets for markets across the US.

That property data includes:

  • Recent home sales
  • Trends in home prices
  • School data
  • School attendance zones
  • Boundaries
  • Neighborhood demographics
  • Crime ratings

And much more.

The big advantage of data from Home Junction is that it is not just based on zip codes. But an agent can select hyper-local statistics for the specific neighborhoods and subdivisions they are farming.

This warehouse of micro-level data is powerful content.

Every homeowner is going to want to know the housing statistics for their neighborhood. Every active home buyer will want to track the movement of prices for the areas where they want to live.

And what’s great about this strategy, is that all of this interesting data will reside on the agent’s website, supplied by a simple Property Data API provided by Home Junction. An API is basically a few lines of code, applied to the pages you select.

That type of content is a strong hook to drive web traffic. Once prospects are on our website, it opens up all sorts of opportunities for email signups, contact form submissions and even phone calls.

The same strategy using hyper-local real estate market data can be applied to email campaigns and even regular advertising campaigns.

Social media is a fantastic (and free) tool for brokers and agents. But it takes smarts, a Property Data API to create enticing content and as we know, the right timing, to make it as effective as possible.

 

 

How A Real Estate API Can Make You The Micro And Macro-Economic Resource In Your Communi

real estate API

A Real Estate API with a continual feed of hyper-local data onto your website can make you THE SOURCE of home market news in your community.

Let’s face it. Real estate is one of the most popular topics. Anything that affects where people live, or are trying to live, is going to catch their attention.

This news can also be the most frustrating for consumers.

After all, we live in the information age, a time where enough information to fill the Congressional-library is available at your fingertips.

But there’s one phenomena taking place today that brokers and agents should include in their marketing strategies.

That’s the issue of TMI (Too Much Information).

Because while we have incredible access to news and content, frankly all that access can be overwhelming.

There’s is so much information bombarding us every day like a digital monsoon.

When it comes to news, every consumer faces these key challenges:

  • Is the information accurate?
  • How do I sift through all the news out there to find what I need for my particular situation?
  • How do I stay updated on current information while still trying to live a life?

This actually presents  a great opportunity for brokers and agents. And to get started, it’s as simple as adding a few lines of code to install a Real Estate API on their website.

Real Estate API provides continual feed of micro-housing info

Let’s start on the micro-economic level.

Sure, there is plenty of information out there about national trends in real estate. Housing forecasts. Mortgage rate trends. Hot markets such as San Francisco where prices continue to skyrocket like Space X rockets.

But as brokers and agens all know, all business is local.

It might be difficult to find a house in San Francisco, but in Your Town USA, there might be plenty of homes available at reasonable prices.

With hyper-local real estate data aggregators such as Home Junction, a broker or agent can add a Real Estate API to their website and continually present accurate and current information about the LOCAL housing market.

They can send out weekly updates on trends in Home Sales.

Publish monthly announcements on the direction of Home Prices.

Announce  new amenities coming to their community such as a new middle school. Or a Whole Foods. A new Starbucks.

Post some photos of new construction taking place, whether it’s a golf course community or a Trader Joe’s. (We all know the appeal of images in this age of Instagram).

All of these items have a BIG EFFECT on local housing.

Include a brief summary with your outlook on the local market as well. After all, you are the expert. People want to know what local agents have to say about market conditions.

By providing this information in bite-size chunks, people will come to rely on you for a local snapshot on what is taking place in their area.

And more importantly, post teaser headlines with links that drive consumers back to your website to find that information.

Because while on your website, you open up all sorts of lead generation opportunities with your home listings, home value estimate tools (also available from Home Junction), requests for a CMAs or more in-depth market information.

Provide macro-housing information as well

On the flip side of the housing-related webisphere, also provide national real estate data to local residents.

Mortgage rates for example. Are they going up? Going down? Is one product, a 15-year fixed mortgage for example, becoming more popular than other products?

Are there new federal programs out there to help home buyers? Are there changes in FHA regulations?

What is the national unemployment rate compared to the local rate?

What’s the latest survey on Consumer Optimism?

Again, there is so much noise out there, if a broker or agent can provide a synopsis of this news, that would be incredibly helpful for local residents.

In addition, if that agent could interpret that data in terms of how it is relevant to local market conditions, residents would be delighted.

Another great development in this day and age for the dissemination of information is social media.

Every broker and agent should say a big Thank You to Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Tumblr, Pinterest and Snapchat for providing a FREE platform for them to reach out to potential sellers and buyers.

But talk about clutter. As we all know, because these platforms are free, there is a ton of content flowing out there – recipes, vacation photos and cats playing the piano.

Same goes for email, yet another fantastic and FREE tool that brokers and agents should be maximizing in this information age. But again, most email inboxes are crammed with promotions and other clutter.

Consumers will trust a local source

There are three basic criteria for what people will read.

  • Is it informative?
  • Is it current?
  • Is it relevant to me?

Facts attract attention. Facts that people can trust. Facts about where they live or are looking to live can really stand out.

Because you are a local agent, you have an advantage because people will tend to trust someone in their community over a website located who knows where. Use that advantage.

Real estate data can be a real catalyst for change.

This is the critical  information that just might prompt someone to list their house for sale. Or to finally quit renting and start looking for a home to purchase.

That catalyst chart be a chart on your website that shows a rise in local home prices. Or perhaps, a note about a drop in mortgage rates.

Create a plan. Be consistent with your postings.

You know where to find that national real estate statistics, for example on websites such as Realtor.com.

With the help of local data aggregators such as Home Junction, you can complete that package by adding a Real Estate API to display neighborhood-related, micro-level housing news.

 

 

Home Junction Provides MLS API For dashCMA – A Revolutionary New Approach To CMA Home Pricing Presentations

dashCMA

An effective MLS API can have a very real effect on companies that strive to make it easier for real estate agents to establish accurate prices for client properties.

For that reason, Home Junction is excited to announce that it has teamed up with dashCMA – a company that provides an innovative new approach to home pricing tools to help agents and their clients determine listing prices.

DashCMA is the brainchild of Karen Abram.  She previously worked as an agent for Keller Williams Realty but soon became very frustrated with the 60-plus pages of data presented in current CMA documents.

The major catalyst for this new product was that Karen had a unique background earlier in her career.

She started as a “data storyteller”  for the Los Angeles Daily News sports department. This was an important role, because as you know, statistics are a part of every sports story.

Karen then honed her skills in data interpretation working for major advertising companies where she created analytical models for numerous Fortune 500 companies.

As a real estate agent, when she experienced the way CMAs were compiled, she realized it was the perfect opportunity to apply her talent.

“I wanted to be able to focus on one page that encompassed the multiple perspectives needed for effective pricing,” she said.”Understanding these pain points firsthand combined with my five plus years experience building pricing models for Fortune 500 clients was the right balance and motivation to get started.”

So she did. Working with software developers, Karen was able to condense home pricing data into a one-page, visually-pleasing dashboard.

dashCMA condenses CMA into one-page dashboard

With dashCMA, an agent can walk homeowners through the numerous factors that go into determining the most realistic price for their home.

Here are some of the datasets included on the dashboard:

·         Closed, Active and Pending Comparables

·         Property types such as Number of Bedrooms, Year Built, Living Area and Lot Size.

·         A helpful mapping tool that can be set to extract comparables from a designated radius.

·         Market status that gives an indication if current conditions show this is more likely a Buyer’s Market or Sellers Market, how many similar properties are for sale, the rate of sales, Fresh versus Stale Properties, direction of pricing and average Shelf Life of properties.

·         There is also a “Flag” section where data can be adjusted if it is not relevant to the homeowner’s situation.

·         Overall perspective of price ranges – this table presents a number of different scenarios, including home value estimates from Zillow, that give homeowners an overview on the range of prices out there that may be relevant to their property.

And, more importantly, she made the format interactive and flexible, so the agent can adjust the information to better align with the exact characteristics of any home in the discussion.

To get feedback on her new pricing model, Karen conducted several focus groups both with agents and homeowners. They all liked the way she refined the CMA data into a format that was easy to understand and customize.

“This single view allows the agent to have a focused pricing conversation with their client and to effectively demonstrate that they considered the bigger, more thorough, pricing picture,” Karen said.

As everybody in the real estate business knows, pricing a home correctly is a challenge. Sellers might have unrealistic expectations about the value of their home. Or some agents might offer to sell a home for much more than it is really worth, which leaves the listing sitting on the market for long periods of time and frustrates the seller.

DashCMA took a complicated process, and made it much easier to comprehend.

dashCMA

Marekt “Gauges” provided in the dashCMA report

MLS API provided by Home Junction

When it came to extracting data from the Multiple Listing Services, she chose to work with Home Junction and our super-effective MLS API.

“We are very pleased to be working with dashCMA and glad they chose us to connect with the various MLS services out there,” said Ed Kim, Senior Vice President. “Extracting data from an MLS can be a complicated process because each one has its own technical requirements and regulations on the use of their data.”

Karen said she found Home Junction very helpful in helping guiding her through the “nuances” of each MLS.

Brokers and agents should give dashCMA a test drive. Right now it is available in the greater Los Angeles area. Soon it will be available in Las Vegas and there are plans to roll out the product nationwide.

Right now, the company is offering a free 7-day trial.

In addition, the cost is only $15 per month. Very reasonable when if you think about all the effort and time that goes into helping clients establish a price for their property.

“DashCMA equips the agent with a modern pricing perspective that their competition isn’t showing,” Karen pointed out. “That can help them win more listings, win more accepted offers but more importantly, win their client’s trust.”

Home Junction is pleased to be involved in any project that makes it easier for brokers and agents. Our mission is to provide the technology that can help real estate professionals become more effective at their jobs.

DashCMA is certainly one of those tools.

The company has taken a very complicated (and oftentimes emotional) challenge, and with the use of a Home Junction MLS API, made it much simpler.

How Property Data Can Be Useful To Help Overcome Seller Procrastination

Property Data can be an important resource when dealing with procrastination, an issue that researchers say hampers ONE out of FIVE adults.

Take notice of this issue. It’s 20% segment of any market!

Brokers and agents know the type. Homeowners who contact them and express an interest in selling their properties…then seem to disappear.

Psychologists say there are several reason why people procrastinate.

They include fear of failure, living in the present instead of planning for the future, avoidance of doing a task, waiting until someone else makes the decision for them, only being able to function under pressure and several others.

This self-defeating behavior can have negative consequences. Think about what happens when people delay seeing a doctor or saving for retirement.

A recent study by H&R Block found that every year taxpayers lose a substantial amount of money when they file taxes late and then rush through the forms to get their returns in the mail.

Property data provides focus

Fortunately, a real estate agent is not supposed to be a therapist. Unfortunately, sometimes it seems as though they have to act like one.

Obviously, there are quite a few emotional plates spinning in the air when people procrastinate. Mentally, their minds are wandering all over the place.

But as we discussed in previous articles, one of the best ways to counter emotions is with facts. Property data in particular.

Take that reluctant homeowner for example.

Instead of allowing them to wallow in indecision, help them focus by providing some market data. A real estate reality check so to speak.

Working with national data aggregators such as Home Junction, a broker or agent can embed a Real Estate API onto their website. This is basically just snippets of software that can easily be added to the back-end coding of any site.

But those simple bits of code open that website up into a huge warehouse of hyper-local property data. Just the type of information to get people to move off the dime.

Say a homeowner in Desirable Acres has retired. They insist they are ready to list their home and relocate. Perhaps to Sunny Acres in Florida or Arizona.

However, something keeps causing them to delay their decision. In fact, they can’t even give a legitimate reason why they are delaying. They don’t even know.

They suffer from procrastination.

Pull out those Home Sales charts for Desirable Acres from Home Junction.

Show the homeowner that their area is hot right now in terms of transactions. Homes are selling. Fast.

Also show them how prices are escalating in their neighborhood.

This will help them overcome their fear of not making a smart decision. The data is there. Now is a great time to sell. The homeowner is sure to receive a very satisfying offer with these current market conditions.

Enhance listing presentations

The agent can also use this property data to show a homeowner how they are going to market their home.

That marketing material to make that property shine can include:

  • Municipal  and neighborhood boundaries
  • School information – student/teacher ratios, enrollment figures, etc.
  • School attendance zones – those important boundaries that indicates which school: elementary, middle or high school, where a child will go to school. These boundaries are different for each school and periodically change for changes in enrollment.
  • Neighborhood demographics
  • Crime ratings
  • Area amenities – that includes parks, stores restaurants, etc. Research shows a Starbucks or a Whole Foods located near a property can definitely have a positive effect on home prices.

Another effective strategy to help overcome procrastination is urgency.

The property data could indicate there is a great window for a owner to sell. Now.

But that window might not always be open.

Conditions change. Mortgage rates go up. More inventory could go on the market and drive prices down. Etc. etc. etc.

Obviously, agents don’t want to talk people into doing something they don’t want to do.

They also don’t want to be the type of overly aggressive sales person that most people dislike.

But that’s the beauty of property data.

Let the data do the persuading. In a gentle manner.

Get those prospects on your email list. With your Real Estate API, send them a regular campaign of market data and charts, showing where the market is going.

Give them a short summary of market conditions.

Suggest deadlines based on market data

Another tool that psychologists say helps with procrastinators is to set deadlines.

Perhaps work with a homeowner to agree to make a decision by a certain date.

Let them know, based on the property data and charts on your website, that typically these months are the best for selling their house. (As we all know, different parts of the country have different sales cycles).

Show people these are ideal times when a homeowner has better odds of getting an optimal price for their property.

Also, these are the preferred time periods for the homeowner to place their home on the market to get it sold quickly. Let them know otherwise they could be facing months of waiting for an offer and numerous open houses.

Consumers must make quite a few decisions today.

Which car to buy, doctors to choose, where to live, which career to pursue. All of these decisions can be overwhelming at times.

But inaction can have major negative consequences, for example, when a local real estate market goes flat.

A savvy broker or agent will realize they need the right tools to help procrastinators overcome their inaction.

That’s where Property Data, supplied by a reliable Real Estate API, can be a huge asset to help people act rather than hesitate when the timing is best for them.