Surviving Social Media | CCIM Institute
Surviving Social Media
CCIMs share their strategies for managing an online presence.
by Rich Rosfelder
The Internet is a noisy place. Each month, Facebook users post more than 30 billion pieces of content, such as notes and photo albums, and billions of tweets resound through Twitter or compatible third-party applications. Add to this the unending chatter of blog posts, LinkedIn messages, and other social media content and the problem becomes clear: How can commercial real estate professionals attract an audience, develop a following, and, ultimately, grow and strengthen their network of potential clients and business partners amid the virtual cacophony?
“The first thing is to get in and explore,” says Todd Clarke, CCIM, chief executive officer of NM Apartment Advisors in Albuquerque, N.M., who will teach a technology and social media course through CCIM Institute’s Ward Center for Real Estate Studies this year. “See what others are doing, and think about how you want to define yourself.” There is no one-size-fits-all social media strategy.
Go It Alone or Get Help?
As with any new business venture, the main concerns when creating a social media strategy are budget and staffing requirements. When John F. Thiry, CCIM, an adviser with NAI Commercial Partners in Lancaster, Pa., set out to establish his reputation as an industrial/office specialist and promote his services to his business peers through social media, he weighed these factors. “I did not want to spend thousands of dollars hiring a company to create my Web presence, and I did not want to spend an undue amount of time creating and managing that presence myself,” Thiry says.
He decided to go it alone — at first. “It was more time-consuming to create than I expected, but the maintenance is manageable,” he says. Thiry uses Twitter to drive traffic to his blog, lancastercommercial.com, and hired an assistant to craft blog posts and tweets. But he selects the content. “I aggregate information from CoStar, CCIM, and other sources that could be useful to my clients,” Thiry adds.