When IT sales manager Dean Lynch was in mortgage broking prior to selling out in 2010, he was an early adopter of new social platforms – largely because he hired a “kid”.
“I hired an assistant straight out of school,” he said. “When she came on board, she showed me what was going on, where younger customers were engaging, and it seemed if I wanted to access active first homebuyers and those looking to save, I needed to be in that space.”
Lynch, who now is a general sales manager at Australia Wide I.T, said he initially paid his assistant to promote his business through social media, then learned some tricks himself.
“I don’t think it was too challenging. They say if you want to know something about IT, computers and social media, hire a kid. That is what I did. I was showed by someone who used it all the time, who understood it and who had grown up with it,” he said.
Lynch said there is a definite “pay-off” for being involved. “It was a great avenue for connecting with customers. It is an efficient and powerful medium. Thinking back, there were a number of instances where I can relate sales to social media programs.”
These transactions often came after answering client questions or engaging with them on particular issues that he had raised via his social networks.
Lynch said brokers should endeavour to get involved in social media, and that the industry was currently lagging other related industries, including real estate agents.
“I look at all the people I am connected to, and real estate agents tend to be using it very well, but brokers are not really using it at all. It could be that real estate agents are often young people, and they are educating their employers about it and saying this is the space they need to be. Brokers employ older people, who maybe are not as in touch with it.”
Lynch said the lack of industry take-up meant there was opportunities for growth. “There is so much more they could be saying, or doing to educate and engage their clients, such as setting up events – but I don’t see that at all,” Lynch said. “With so many followers on Facebook, it is where you need to be. With that age bracket growing up now, if you want to engage and market to them, you need to be where they are.”
Lynch said being on social media gave him an opportunity to promote other businesses he was associated with, including accountants, solicitors and real estate agents.