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Since social media has become an essential part of real estate marketing, choosing the right platform(s) has never been so important. More and more real estate professionals are turning to Google Plus, now the “world’s number two social network (Business Insider),” as their “go-to” social network!

Many sources are suggesting that attention is beginning to fade Facebook and that users are battling “Facebook fatigue” due to numerous privacy changes and the increased prevalence of sponsored content. Since Google is the most used search engine, email host, and data sharing platform for most internet users, it only makes sense to join Google Plus?

Here are the top 5 reasons to jump aboard the Google+ bandwagon!

1. Communities and Circles.   These features allows users to create groups based upon common interests. Unlike Facebook where you “connect with friends”, Google Plus encourages users to branch out and “meet strangers who share common interests” to add to your “circles” (Business Insider). This is important to real estate professionals because it allows you to create circles for each stage of your contacts and post content pertaining to each respective circle. While working with first time homebuyers, real estate pros can create a circle to share information that is specific to them like house hunting checklists, mortgage information, and other helpful resources that may not apply to “circles” that are in other homebuying stages.

2. Google Plus Hangouts. Host virtual meetings or property tours and connect with clients and colleagues all from your mobile device or desktop! If you have out-of-area buyers who can’t arrange to see properties in person, start a Hangout and take them on a live virtual tour of the home from your phone, tablet or laptop.  Hangouts have an advantage over Facebook’s video chat mechanism in that Hangouts allow you to interact with up to 15 people at the same time.  Further, for those who couldn’t make it to the live Hangout, you can save it your YouTube channel, which is integrated with your Google Plus page (see more below).  Users don’t expect Hangouts to be scripted or formal, so posting to your pages further authenticates, or humanizes your brand (Mashable).

3. YouTube & Google Integration. With real estate being such a visual industry, Google Plus’s picture-centric look might be more appealing to consumers especially now that video content is in high demand.   With the partnering of Google Plus and YouTube, real estate pros can host Hangouts or shoot videos to showcase virtual property tours, community videos, video blogs and other valuable content onto your Google Plus profile and YouTube channel!

4. Google Plus Local.  Become popular in your local community and on the web! Use the review feature to collect online reviews and feedback from clients and monitor your page’s activity through Google Analytics to spot trends regarding what posts your users are engaging with.

5. Google Plus Mobile.   Life on the go! Instantly upload property photos and videos, chat face to face with potential clients directly from your mobile device!  With Google Plus Mobile you can drive through a neighborhood, take video, host a Hangout and talk about that neighborhood and the local market.

Come join Homes.com in the Google Plus movement and be sure to add HomesPro  to your circles to find out what’s new in the real estate industry! For more information on how Google Plus is growing and the advantages of using Hangouts, check out these articles Suddenly, Google Plus Is Outpacing Twitter To Become The World’s Second Largest Social Network and Should Your Business Use Google Hangouts?!