I am constantly asked two questions about my involvement with social media and commercial real estate...Are you making any money with that stuff?...AND How do I get started? Before I answer the questions...which I will do, Scout's Honor...let me digress...
I recently challenged the staff at the News Funnel to an Ice Bucket Challenge to raise awareness for ALS. For those of you who are frequenters of this space, you know that the staff accepted the challenge and challenged three more folks...Duke Long, Linda Day Harrison, and Mark Cuban. As of this writing, I know that Linda has accepted and posted a video, Duke dropped an F-Bomb...shocker! and I'm uncertain as to Mark Cuban's participation...Cuban and I are not "boys". Where else would something like this occur than through social media? The media...I am truly astonished!
OK, back to the two questions:
Have I made any money doing this stuff?...YES! Industrial lease of a 165,000 sf building, Five office leases of approximately 4,000 sf each, sale of a 4,000 commercial building, listing for the lease of three assets owned by the same owner...two 50,000 sf office buildings and a 50,000 sf commercial center (we were engaged to sell the assets once leased), 12,000 sf lease in Houston Texas...I love this one because Coy Davidson and I coop-ed this deal from one of my clients in SoCal. Were all of these because of social media...YES! Would they have happened otherwise...NO! Is money the only reason I engage in social media...NO!...but closing deals in the "new millennium" because of a creative marketing plan certainly doesn't suck...at all!
How do I get started? I tell people these three things:
1. Learn from my mistakes. When I engaged in the media in 2009...I was clueless. I just had a hunch that this was gonna be big and decided to "work out loud"...a term my wife coined to describe blogging. I watched Duke Long, Coy Davidson, Barbi Reuter, Linda Day Harrison, Matt Smith, Chris Clark, Howard Kline...and many others ply their trade and slowly found "my voice". My biggest mistakes early on were not targeting the correct audience and inconsistency. If you start in the media today, you have many, many folks to follow who really do it right!
2. Take one step along the social media path. Everyone consumes content...step one. If you currently only CONSUME, proceed to step two and CURATE. Simply send this post to a client, a friend or post to a Facebook or Twitter account and voila...you are a CURATOR. If you regularly CURATE, then take a stab at CONTENT CREATION. Content can be as easy as accepting an ICE BUCKET CHALLENGE, video yourself doing it, and then posting the video to LinkedIn.
3. Just do it! You don't need to have a perfect blog, 10,000 Twitter followers, an expensive website, or 500+ LinkedIn connections to get started. If you wait until ALL of these elements are in place you have wasted valuable engagement time. Pick a strategy and go...and learn along the way.
By: Allen Buchanan
Principal | Lee & Associates
Follow Allen on Twitter @allencbuchanan
Be sure to follow Allen's blog as well, featuring his well-known Tuesday Traffic Tips
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