Former CEO of Starbucks, Orin Smith, was well-known for his entrepreneurship, but he was beloved in his hometown for his philanthropic efforts to build and engage within the community. Ask yourself: “What reputation do I carry in my neighborhood?” As a real estate professional, you’re uniquely positioned to become a pillar in your community by enriching the area in which you serve. In addition to being personally fulfilling, community engagement can build brand exposure, expand your sphere of influence, and generate considerable business and referrals. The first step is getting involved.

Volunteering for a worthy cause

Networking is an essential aspect of being a REALTOR®, but it doesn’t have to always be a hard sell. A subtler approach involves building relationships with a wide cross-section of people, referencing your career in passing, staying top-of-mind, and allowing referrals to naturally filter in. Volunteering at a non-profit or civic association is an excellent pressure-free environment to help expand your network while serving your community. Many discover a deep sense of personal fulfilment by contributing to a worthy cause, making volunteer work a personally and professionally rewarding endeavour. There are many online resources, such as VolunteerMatch.org, to help you find a local cause about which you’re passionate.

Hosting community events

In addition to volunteering, many real estate professionals get involved with their communities by hosting events. For example, hosting free information sessions on topics such as good credit habits, homeownership, and tips when buying or selling a home can contribute to a more informed public. In the long run, having an educated populace can make an agent’s job easier when the time comes that they require the services of a real estate professional. Helping facilitate community events can also go a long way in demonstrating your commitment and enthusiasm for your neighborhood. These events can include block parties, barbecues, garage sales, festivals, exhibitions, and fun runs. Organizing a marathon is an excellent opportunity to sport your company colors while generating proceeds for a worthy cause. These events should be communal activities where locals can gather and interact.

Engaging online

Participating in a community has never been easier than with the advent of social media. Find local community pages aimed at professionals, residents, homeowners, real estate, and any other topic that interests you and contribute in a way that adds value for others. You can take this one step further by building an online community surrounding your personal brand. Doing so hinges on your ability to provide engaging content, create meaningful interactions with your followers, and maintain an active presence. Try to have fun with it and create a balance of customer-centric professional and playful content. You can use your channel to highlight local activities, events, and clubs as a way of encouraging awareness and participation in your area. Creating polls, quizzes, posing questions, and writing blogs can be great ways to get your audience thinking and interacting. Likewise, contests with relevant prizes can hype up your network and get them talking. In short, you must give your followers a reason to want to be part of your community. Check out these related articles from our six-part series on social media for more information on building an online audience or developing an effective content strategy.

Relationships are the crux of the real estate industry, which is why community engagement can be so beneficial to your business. Investing in your community demonstrates your commitment to improving conditions for all. When people admire and respect the work you do, they don’t feel obligated to give you their business, they do so because they want to be part of your success story.

 

 

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