Broker Public Portal with Homesnap Debuts a Game Changer, Partnering With Facebook Marketplace
By Carl DeMusz
The power of Facebook is staggering: 1.62 billion daily active users posting more than a half-million comments and uploading 136,000 photos every 60 seconds. Nearly 70 percent of Americans use Facebook, and 74 percent visit every day.
Facebook Marketplace’s growth is equally astonishing. In three years, it has become the new Craigslist. Facebook Marketplace is now in 70 countries and used by more than 800 million people worldwide each month—and now, the Broker Public Portal (BPP) with Homesnap has become a source of data for real estate rental listings on Facebook Marketplace.
Individual MLSs that have joined the BPP may elect to share their rental listings for display on Facebook Marketplace. For both renters and agents, this is a game changer. Facebook is doing it the right way—and the best way—by partnering with the real estate industry through BPP.
Many agents today struggle to maximize the value of social media. Homesnap’s partnership with Facebook is good for both agents and consumers: Renters get access to accurate, reliable information about rental listings, and agents get real leads from real people.
As REALTORS®, we have always helped first-time buyers—about 40 percent of the market today. That involves educating them to compare renting versus buying. By providing a way for agents and brokers to talk to renters, Facebook and Homesnap are helping both groups.
Yes-MLS has been an enthusiastic supporter of the BPP from inception. Our original motivation was to help our brokers and agents generate leads without having to pay third-party advertising portals. Almost immediately, Facebook Marketplace developed new business opportunities for our members.
Since we began publishing rentals on Facebook Marketplace, traffic on Homesnap in the first month jumped 26 percent. In less than 90 days, we delivered more than 23,900 leads. Nearly 1,200 eligible rentals at launch were piped into Marketplace. Yes-MLS lead flow jumped 1,113 percent!
Best of all, the tens of thousands of leads Yes-MLS is delivering to our members are free and sent exclusively to listing agents and brokers, provided as a standard MLS member benefit.
Increasing the Value of the MLS
Agents and brokers today face a lot of expenses. Company dollars are stretched. Agents’ budgets are maxed out. A quality MLS will help its members by communicating about only the most important initiatives and resources instead of bombarding them with useless messages. At Yes-MLS, we’ve been cautious about picking and choosing what we tell our members about and how we share the news, and we’ve noticed that agents are always hungry to hear about what’s new with Homesnap.
At Yes-MLS, our education team includes five account executives. Their mission is not to sell, but to educate. When we launched Facebook Marketplace to an enthusiastic crowd, we showed agents and brokers how these new resources are right at their fingertips. That’s because Yes-MLS members are right where the rubber meets the road, serving their clients all the time, every day.
The Broker Public Portal is something we all invested in and own. Now we are starting to see the payback. This new partnership with Facebook Marketplace is just one of many future returns we can expect from supporting the BPP over the past several years.
It is another reason why every brokerage and MLS benefits by supporting the Broker Public Portal with Homesnap. Together, we are just getting started. If you are still on the fence about joining the BPP, now is the time to act.
Carl DeMusz is CEO of Yes-MLS, the largest MLS in Ohio with 12,600 members serving 36 counties in The Buckeye State and West Virginia. For more information, please visit www.brokerpublicportal.com.
Note: This column originally appeared in the February edition of Real Estate Magazine and online at RISMedia.com