VirtualTourCafe - Virtual Tours, e-Flyers and YouTube-Style Video: The Naked Truth About Social Networking

The Naked Truth About Social Networking


For the first time ever, U.S. web surfers visited the Facebook social networking site more often than any other site in 2010, beating out Google now in the number two spot, according to a report from Hitwise, an Internet analytics firm.

VirtualTourCafe Cafe WomanAs a real estate virtual tour provider we spend a lot of time on social networking activities both for the company and to promote our clients.  But what is social networking and how can it help sell real estate, you ask?

Using Wikipedia "the online encyclopedia" for the term "Social Networking" it is described as:

A social network service is an online service, platform, or site that focuses on building and reflecting of social networks or social relations among people, e.g., who share interests and/or activities. A social network service essentially consists of a representation of each user (often a profile), his/her social links, and a variety of additional services… “

It goes on to talk about the types of social networking, networking groups, communities, etc.  For a more detailed definition, go to:

So how can social networking help you sell more homes? 
Real estate is a contact sport.  You want to be networking with people, both those you already know (your sphere of influence), and those you have yet to meet. Social networks such as Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, ActiveRain and RealTown are the new online elbow-rubbing (virtual), story-telling, cocktail parties of the new social world!

Don’t be late to the party…
You can add your virtual tours and property listings to Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and others.  But for every virtual tour or listing you post, you should be writing six or seven non-selling messages or “tweets” as they are called in Twitter.  Write about what you are doing outside of business or what is happening in the neighborhood.  Write about local sports, market conditions, local fairs, farmers markets or anything you might talk about with a group of friends.  Think of social networking as a “virtual cocktail party” and remember your manners… let others talk and then respond; back and forth!

Traditional Social NetworkingWhat social networking is not!
Social networking (in most cases) will not replace your traditional methods of prospecting and networking such as “farming”, Open House, Just Listed and Just Sold postcards, phone calls, cold calls, letters (snail-mail), Chamber of Commerce or the local MLS Marketing Groups. 

How to get social in 2011
Let's start with Facebook...  Facebook has been thought by many people to be just for young people or something that our kids use to communicate with friends.  Well, this “was” true several years ago.  However Facebook has evolved into much, much more!  Today, Facebook has more subscribers than the entire population of the United States!  Facebook in 2010 passed the 500,000,000 member mark!  Yes, that is 500 MILLION!!!  And it is still growing at a rate that appears to be unstoppable.

Take Action – It’s Free!
So, sign up for a free Facebook membership and create a personal profile with basic information about yourself, nothing too personal, keep it simple.  The important thing is to get started today!  Create a profile with a minimum of your name, contact information, picture (yes, include your picture), business, and some personal information such as hobbies, pets, etc.   But remember to ONLY share information you would be comfortable having shared on the front page of the newspaper… Since virtual content “could” be seen by more people than ever read your local paper, even the New York Times! 

Next, start searching for your friends, associates and clients who are also on Facebook.  You may be amazed at how fast your friends list grows...  Congratulations, you are now social networking!  Now that wasn't so tough was it?

Join us on Facebook:


Wishing you a Happy, Healthy and Prosperous New Year! “Do-It-Yourself” Virtual Tours is the Real Estate One-Stop Marketing Shop for agents and Brokers looking to meet the needs of the modern online buyer, using automated technology and social media integration. 

Written by Tim Denbo, President/CEO
VirtualTourCafe, LLC is based in Dublin, California and was co-founded by Timothy Denbo and Hannele Rinta-Tuuri.  The business is operated as a limited liability company and has an advisory board made up of professionals in the real estate, technology, and marketing fields. VirtualTourCafe continuously donates a minimum of 10% of all net profits to charity.


Comment balloon 3 commentsTim Denbo • January 07 2011 09:25AM


You have hit social media ball well here.  This is one more tool in our arsenol and not the only one.  Getting face to face with people is always the best way to grow your business, but using social media tools helps you get there.

Posted by Larry Lawfer, "I listen for a living." It's all about you. (YourStories Realty Group powered by Castles UnlimitedĀ®) almost 9 years ago

Harnessing the incredible power and lead generating opportunities of these networking sites is becoming key to an ineffective online presence so my 2011 goal is to put together a viable strategy.  Easier said than done!

Posted by Keith Vermilyea (Home Buyers Marketing II, Inc.) almost 9 years ago

Larry, thank you for the comment, you are absolutely correct!  These are all tools and if we use them the right way, they will help grow our business, regardless of type!


Keith, thank you for your comments, yes there are a lot of networking sites available.  We have over 250 on our virtualtourcafe site to allow our clients to connect with whichever one they are using. It can be overwhelming!

Let us know if we can be of any assistance and thank you for your comments!  Make it a great day :)

Posted by Tim Denbo, Tim Denbo, VirtualTourCafe (VirtualTourCafe, LLC) almost 9 years ago

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