If you clicked on this article and immediately thought, “No WAY am I joining another social media platform and especially not TikTok!” trust me, you’re not alone.
Almost every agent I talk to these days says the same thing. Some agents even get angry about it. 👿 But what if I told you that TikTok could really be that once-in-a-career opportunity to build a massive local audience and actually generate leads on social media? Too good to be true, right?
According to three top agents we spoke with, TikTok is that once-in-a-career opportunity. They might be biased—they have over 3 MILLION combined likes on the platform and they’re doubling down in 2022. But what if they’re right?
Madison Sutton, The McPeak Team at SERHANT.
TikTok account: @thenycagent
Likes: 1.8 million
With more than a hundred thousand followers and almost 2 million likes on TikTok, New York City agent Madison Sutton is one of the best people in the industry to talk about how Realtors can leverage TikTok to jump-start their careers. What sets her apart is that she has parlayed TikTok success into real estate success.
Don’t believe me? Over the past few months, top-shelf luxury brokerages have been tripping over themselves to get Madison and her hundred thousand followers on their team. She is such a hot commodity that SERHANT.’s successful attempts to woo her from Brown Harris Stevens have been written up in The Real Deal and Inman. So yeah, TikTok is big business in real estate now.
Here is Madison’s advice for new and experienced agents who are still on the fence about joining yet another social media platform. Spoiler alert: she thinks you should get started yesterday.
2022 Is ‘Sink or Swim’ for Agents Who Want to Get Started on TikTok
“We’re at a point now in real estate marketing where you need to be on social media if you want to grow your business. I hate to say it, but it really is sink or swim at this point.
“That said, I think many agents still have a mental barrier, where they think it’s going to be much harder than it actually is. You’re already making listing videos (or you should be), so why not post video to as many platforms as you can? It only takes one. One person, one follower, one share, and then that video can be a $100,000 video. Think you’re too late to the game? That’s not an excuse. It’s like going to the gym—you’re going to wish you started six months ago!”
Success on TikTok Starts With Mindset
“My biggest piece of advice for agents getting into TikTok is that success starts with your mindset. There are two types of mindsets that most agents have: the optimistic mindset and the preventive mindset. If you’re going into creating TikTok videos with a preventive mentality, you’re probably thinking something like, “I don’t want to get negative feedback from this,” or “What will my colleagues/friends/families think?” and if you do, you’ll always limit yourself.
Instead, if you make a TikTok video with strong and positive intentions (the optimistic mindset), trust me, you will grow your account. So stay positive, have fun, and remember that like all social media, being authentic is key. People may watch a video for the listing, but they’ll stay for you.”
TikTok Offers a Unique Opportunity to Get Personal With Potential Buyers & Sellers
“My team leader, Sean McPeak, taught me one of the key questions he asks a potential seller: ‘Why did you buy this home?’ Since it’s such a personal and direct medium, TikTok allows you to ask potential buyers and sellers in your audience those same kinds of questions. That’s powerful.”
The Science-Backed Mindset All Successful Realtors Share
Learning the Ropes of Video Is Crucial to Social Media Success in 2022
While we agree with Madison and Nile that yesterday was the best time to get started on TikTok, if you don’t take the time to learn the basics of creating video, you’re shooting yourself in the foot before you even start. Those seemingly small details you wing it on—lighting, camera angles, audio, and pacing—are MUCH more important than you think.
That’s why we love Parkbench’s new Local Leader® Video Marketing Mastery course. The course gives you everything you need to create professional videos—from content strategy to which microphone to buy—putting you on the path to success. Even better, the course comes with a money-back guarantee.
Nile Lundgren, The Lundgren Team at SERHANT.
TikTok account: @nilelundgren
Nipping at Madison’s heels with almost 50,000 followers, Nile Lundgren is leveraging his decade-plus of experience in luxury real estate and $160 million in sales with his TikTok presence. His growth on the platform has been parabolic—making TikTok one of the most important tools in his marketing arsenal.
Here are Nile’s best tips for agents who want to get started on TikTok, including what kind of content generates leads, and how often to post to grow your audience quickly.
Don’t Overthink It, Just Get Started!
“If you’re thinking of joining TikTok, don’t wait—just do it. Don’t think too much about it. TikTok has surpassed Google’s traffic in 2021 and that’s MAJOR. It’s not just for kids—it’s for everyone in every sector. Clients and potential clients who follow me on TikTok and are reminded daily that if they want anything real estate, they call Nile.”
Post 3-5 Videos per Day to Build Your Audience Quickly
“To build out your TikTok following, your first goal should be to post three to five videos a day. Don’t worry—they don’t have to be epic or well-produced—it’s all about consistency. In fact, posts with errors get many comments from users, which is great for interaction. Once you get to 1,000 followers, you can go LIVE. I recommend that after you post, you should go live for five minutes. Do that every time and your follower count should grow if you are consistent.”
Promote Your TikToks on Instagram Stories
“To promote my account, I post my TikToks to my Instagram Story. It’s great because it has the TikTok watermark on it, which is a subliminal message to my Instagram followers that I’m on the platform. Beyond that, I’ll post to Twitter, and other social media platforms too. But in general, the best way to promote TikTok is by posting daily. The volume speaks for itself.”
Generate Leads With Local Lifestyle Videos
“In my experience, the videos that generate the most leads are those pertaining to New York City—be it the insane views I see while selling luxury real estate or just NYC bridges and iconic buildings. Believe it or not, something as simple as crossing the Brooklyn Bridge can be very popular on TikTok. Always remember, not everybody lives your life. Your day-to-day life might be more exciting for people than you think.”
TikTok Works for Property Marketing Too
“My team at SERHANT. recently took over sales at The Huxley, a new development on Manhattan’s Upper East Side. As part of our marketing campaign, I created the hashtag #thehuxley and posted video around the building to TikTok. To date, the hashtag has over 3 million views and is a key driver for sales in the building.
“When we bring this data to the developer, we can say ‘Look, this building is trending on TikTok, look at this hashtag #thehuxley!‘ Our marketing success on TikTok has become a powerful tool for social proof. Forget selling in 2022, that’s selling in 2030!!!”
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Nancy Almodovar, NAN & Co. Properties, Houston
TikTok account: @nancy_almodovar
To get the perspective from the real estate C-suite, we talked to Nancy Almodovar, CEO of Houston luxury team Nan & Co Properties. Nancy is just getting started on TikTok, but has already managed to rack up over a hundred thousand likes on the platform.
Here’s her take on why TikTok is the new Instagram, and how she sold a home with the biggest closet in America and grew her audience at the same time with her TikTok account.
TikTok’s Algorithm Is Designed to Grow New Accounts Quickly
“For agents considering joining TikTok, I would note that it has become the go-to platform for fast growth on social media over the last few years. This is largely because unlike other social media platforms, their algorithm allows new accounts to grow quickly from day one.
“TikTok’s algorithm is designed to expose your videos to various audiences, regardless of your follower count. TikTok’s ‘For You’ page is the equivalent of Instagram’s ‘Discover’ page, except it has a more advanced and engaging algorithm.”
Start With the Basics: Introduce Yourself!
“My advice for agents just starting out on TikTok is simple. Start with the basics! Upload a couple of videos introducing yourself and what you bring to the table. Then follow up with posts about your services and educational content to build credibility. Once you get going, add in lifestyle moments to establish a human connection. Success on TikTok is all about how you mix and match professional and entertaining posts, so remember to keep mixing it up. Don’t bore them with endless videos about 1031 exchanges!”
Promote Your TikTok on Instagram Stories to Build FOMO
“I try my best to leverage my audience on different social media platforms to redirect them to my TikTok. My current strategy is publishing a video on TikTok first, then promoting it on my Instagram stories to build FOMO (fear of missing out). My followers on Instagram then head over to my TikTok to see my latest videos.”
Generate Leads With Luxury Listing Videos
“In my experience, luxury listing videos generate the most leads. People always want to see the unique amenities that some of these luxury homes offer. For example, I listed Theresa Roemer’s home earlier last year. The listing included America’s largest closet. Content of this sort performs well because it allows the viewers to get a glimpse of the luxury lifestyle. The engagement and exposure that this curiosity created on TikTok helps my listings reach potential buyers.”
Over to You
Still on the fence about using TikTok in your real estate marketing or have you already jumped in with both feet? Let us know in the comments!