Facebook is no longer a little-known marketing strategy. In fact, it’s grown to become a behemoth platform for not only social interaction but also a place where users go to research and learn more before buying products they’re interested in.
With the introduction of its Marketplace, Facebook is now a place businesses use to generate leads, increase sales, and raise awareness.
This growing reliance on social networks to help grow businesses also relates to real estate. Over 90% of realtors already use social media — which means there are plenty of other agents competing for real estate leads on Facebook.
Not sure where to begin? Here are four powerful ways to market through Facebook and get noticed by buyers.
Whether users are scrolling through their News Feed or catching the latest Live video in their groups, user attention is divided.
To make the most of the platform, agents today need to market through innovative methods that capture buyers’ attention.
Keep on reading, we selected 4 smart strategies you can start using now!
1. Use 360 video and photo ads
Most Facebook real estate ads feature a single image of the property. This might be an image of the front of the property or one of the rooms within. This photo might be stunning enough to motivate clicks, but people usually want to see more of a property before contacting you, the listing agent.
Consider this, 99% of people looking to buy a new home start with an internet search to research their options. They aren’t going to call you until they have a good idea of what type of house they want, their desired neighborhood, and their price point. As Facebook users go through this research stage, imagine how many more real estate leads you’ll get if your ads include a series of photos instead of just one — or even a video. It’s a simple visual change, but its positive effect on users sets you apart from your competitors.
Facebook ads using 360 photos and videos allow users to explore properties virtually. Seeing the listing from more angles allows a potential buyer to feel more confident in the property’s worth and more motivated to click. More importantly, more pictures mean potential buyers can start to imagine themselves living in the space.
If you decide to share a gallery of images with potential buyers, choose two or three rooms in each property to feature. For example, share multiple images of the kitchen, living room, and bedroom. These are all places where people spend the most time in their home. To make your photos and videos even more appealing, invest in professional staging — at the very least declutter the space — and use a professional photographer or videographer to shoot your properties.
Also, since 85% of Facebook videos are watched without sound, make sure to include a descriptive, but short, ad description. If possible, include captions in your videos. This way, it’s clear to viewers what they’re seeing and why it’s important. You can share special features and facts about each room you show. The more relevant the information you share, the better your chances of attracting more real estate leads.
To learn more about how 360 photos are used in Facebook ads, check out this video. You can also check out this post on great 360 Facebook ad examples for inspiration.
2. Connect with Facebook Live
While Facebook Live isn’t technically advertising, it’s still a powerful way to market your property or real estate business in general and to generate leads.
Filming through Facebook Live allows you to get personal with your buyers. You can have a real-time conversation with your audience, show them your property, and answer any questions about the listing. To encourage engagement with your audience, promote your upcoming Facebook Live video on your page and invite subscribers on your email list to join.
For people who weren’t able to join the live video, share a replay of it on your Facebook page, send a link of it to your email list, and create a video archive on your website for future site visitors to see.
Facebook Live, Melissa Steele
Courtesy: Team Steele San Diego Homes with John & Melissa Steele (click the image to open Facebook Live video)
What’s great about Facebook Live is you can be as creative as you want to be — as long as you tailor your content to your audience.
Some ideas of the types of content you can share include:
A sneak peek of an upcoming open house
A question and answer about mortgages, interest rates, how to list a home, or anything relevant to your audience
Home-sharing tips on how to prepare to list or run an open house
A walk around a neighborhood pointing out key features and amenities
Highlights about your experience while at an industry event
A reminder to people about an upcoming event and its highlights
An interview with a recent client who’s closed on a home
If you’re planning to have an educational Facebook Live video, post a question or poll on your Facebook page and ask users to share their thoughts and opinions. Use their responses as a starting point for your Facebook Live video.
During the video, ask viewers to comment, share their thoughts, or click on a link to find out more. This approach positions you as a trusted adviser who’s knowledgeable about real estate.
Plus, adding a call to action (CTA) in your video helps to boost your real estate leads since you’re directing them to take a specific action.
Being available to help your audience through Facebook Live makes you feel more accessible and will give buyers reasons to appreciate your business.
3. Show more with Carousel ads
Instead of using a single photo for your next ad campaign, try the Carousel ad format to showcase multiple photos of the same listing or multiple listings. People are more likely to stay engaged with the swiping action to see each photo. For example, check out this Carousel ad for a townhouse community in California:
Each image in the Carousel ad above links to a different landing page for each property. This approach to highlighting multiple listings helps get them more exposure than if they were showcased separately at different times.
Instead of hoping one property will be enough to get users to call you, Carousel ads let you show more than one house in specific neighborhoods. Since they’re grouped together, potential buyers can do more research in one place — ideally on your website once they click through the ad — and reach out to you when they see something they like. With a Carousel ad, chances are users will see something they like sooner than if they had to wade through lots of single image ads over time.
Remember, to generate as many real estates leads as possible, you want to make their online search as easy as possible.
Another option is to let all of your Carousel ads link to the same landing page. This approach works if your ads are showing multiple photos of the same listing.
4. Promote rewards for referrals
Buyers trust referrals more than most advertising because they serve as social proof. By showing that other people have enjoyed doing business with you, you’re able to establish trust sooner than if potential buyers and sellers didn’t have a frame of reference.
There’s one major issue with referral marketing though — only 29% of satisfied customers refer others without prompting. This is despite the fact that 83% of customers say they’re willing to share a referral. So why the discrepancy? It turns out companies have to do a better job of asking for referrals. When companies make it clear to customers what the rewards are and what they need to do to get them, there’s a natural increase in referrals.
To increase your real estate leads, incentivize referrals by setting up a rewards program through Facebook and boosting posts on your Business page about the program. For example, you could host a monthly giveaway where every referral counts as an entry.
Find an industry-related gift, such as a home decor gift card, to make the contest feel more personal. Providing past clients with a valuable reward will remind them of their positive experience with you and will prompt them to refer others.
For more ideas on how to use Facebook for referrals, check out this helpful guide from Extole.
Start, Experiment, and Improve Real Estate Leads
Facebook isn’t a predictable environment — it’s hard to know which types of marketing will resonate most with buyers. The key is to experiment with each of these tactics and measure engagement.
Once you discover which strategies are most successful, you can fully implement them to stand out against competitors and attract more buyers. Over time, you’ll get more real estate leads and have the opportunity to nurture and convert them.
Buying or selling a house isn’t a snap decision and takes time. Get to know your audience well so that you can provide them with the information they need to make a decision. It might take a few weeks or months to convert, but the relationship you’ve established with your audience will ensure they come to you when they’re ready to move forward.