Digital Don't: What NOT to do on Facebook When Your Brokerage Rebrands Itself

In a previous post, I described 8 tips for an agent to properly transition their brand on Facebook. A client question to that article prompted this post design to illustrate a detail to avoid on Facebook when a brand transitions on Facebook. The detail to avoid may seem minor, but it is not. If improperly handled, the consequences put the agent into the category of making the #1 mistake salespeople make on Facebook. And, both the brokerage and the brand miss a significant branding opportunity, lost engagement, and dilute their Facebook influence.

To illustrate what not to do, consider this case study:

  • Prudential Utah underwent a rebranding to Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Utah and has a business page on Facebook that they need to reflect their new branding.
  • Their agent, Realtor Jenny Roberts, has a personal Facebook profile that is linked to her brokers business page. Jenny is interested in making sure her profile is updated to reflect the new branding of her brokerage. 

Digital Don't

What agents SHOULDN’T do during a brokerage rebranding, is create a link to a new Facebook page that is reflective of the new brokerage name, as shown in this example. Although this is a *seemingly* logical solution to a brand transition on Facebook, this solution has undesirable consequences and should be avoided.

Here is what the agent did to clarify what to avoid. The agent edited her “Work and Education” section of her profile to reflect that she has a new brokerage name that she is working for. As the screenshot shows, her Facebook profile shows that she worked for Prudential Utah until June 2014, and then Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Utah after that. 

The issue is that when the agent does this, they are creating a link to a blank business page and visitors to the page will click through to a page that looks bland, with no additional information or positive branding going on:

Don’t do this!  Instead, here is what SHOULD happen in order for the agent to have the new brokerage brand reflected on their profile:

Digital Do

Do Nothing!*  It’s as simple as that.

*This advice is assuming that the agent has properly linked to the brokerage page that is changing names, the agent should do nothing. (Note, this is a big assumption - again, verify that the agent is not guilty of the #1 mistake sales people make on Facebook).  

Here is the thing to understand, the brokerage page administrator (likely a brokerage staff member) will handle the process of converting the brokerage page name from the old brand to the new brand. IF the agent profile is properly linked to the brokerage business page, when the brokerage page name changes, it will automatically be updated on the agents profile.

Here is a visual overview of this process using our case study:
Pre-brand transition, the agent profile links over to the proper business page of the brokerage and when a visitor to the agent's profile clicks on her brokerage name, it clicks through to the official page of the brokerage. Notice that the page name matches what is appearing on the agents profile, even though the branding of the page has been updated to the new BHHS Utah look and feel.

It is the responsibility of the broker to go through the process of changing the page name on Facebook. The process to update a business page name can take anywhere from a few seconds, to a few weeks, depending on the current Facebook rules and your fan count. 

In our case study, because the fan count of the page is over 200 likes, the page name change had to be submitted to Facebook and it took some time to be approved (this is why the visual branding - which is flexible and easy to change out - has been updated, but the page name is still Prudential Utah. The brokerage had to wait for the page name to be approved and transitioned by Facebook).  One day however, all page fans got this message:

And the page name was updated (also noteworthy is that the brokerage retains all its fans and didn’t have to start from scratch with a new page for the new brand):

BHHS Utah Page

Once the name of the brokerage page is changed, the agent’s profile was automatically updated as we can see on her profile:

See the difference? Option B (our Digital Do) creates a much more powerful brand impression than Option A (our Digital Don’t), and is the correct process for fueling engagement and lead generation on Facebook for both the agent and the brand:

Fixing the Don't

So what should an agent who has done what was illustrated in the don’t section do to correct it? Here is the process:

  1. Delete the work history that links to the new “blank” brokerage page in their Work and Education Section
  2. Confirm that they are linking to the current official page of the brokerage (even if the name hasn’t converted yet)
  3. WAIT for the name change of the brokerage page to be approved by Facebook knowing it will automatically update the brokerage name on their profile.
  4. [Optional]  Edit the “description” field of the company position to describe that the company changed its name as of a particular date.

This is a detail that matters if you are an agent, and if you are brokerage undergoing a brand transition, this is a great post to share with your agents.

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