Facebook Real Estate Marketing: Create a Facebook Ads strategy for Brand Growth
Almost every realtor is familiar with Facebook ads. But not everyone gets the same results with it. Here’s how AgentFire has been able to generate 2,371 high quality leads for their clients at a cost per click rate of $1.125 and cost per lead of $5.45.
The great thing about Facebook ads is that you can always replicate, generating consistent niche leads. Dave Queen, client experience manager at AgentFire describes the strategy in brief in this post. The crux is that it’s all about going niche. Targeting the micro as is AgentFire’s value proposition: “Let Zillow and other agents battle over the macro, while you feast on the micro, with the only truly HyperLocal real estate website solution.”
By featuring the most engaging element of a home and boiling down their audience to high net worth buyers, they target buyers with aligned priorities. For example, a campaign with the title “Single Story Homes with Garages in X Neighborhood (a desirable part of town)” only costed about $0.4 per click and less than $2 per lead. It was targeted to folks who earn $100,000 per year. Obviously, a campaign like this was only going to appeal to qualified buyers seeking single story homes with garages in X neighborhood.
With Facebook ads, it’s a level playing field. According to Queen, “Different people want different things. It’s your job to understand what is valuable to them and then get that message in front of them.”
Hubspot’s 2018 statistics show that content consumption on Facebook has increased by 57% over the past two years. The average user spends about 35 minutes on Facebook every day. An average American spending 58 minutes every day. With a reach of 2 billion, Facebook has definitely grown from just a social media tool for connecting with friends to a potent marketing tool for advertisers and brands. Facebook ads generate a conversion rate of 9.21 across all industries.
A lot of real estate agents are familiar with Facebook ads. It’s a potent marketing tool, not only because of Facebook’s large user base but its powerful ad targeting features. Nonetheless, exploring Facebook’s ad features have become a bit more complicated with new updates that prioritize engagement; punishing clickbait and false information. This means real estate agents who want to get new leads via Facebook ads would need to dig deeper into the arsenal and make their messages interactive.
Most marketers already know how profitable Facebook is. 2 million businesses used Facebook for advertising in 2018.
Without wasting time on reasons why you should leverage Facebook for getting new real estate leads. This article should present some tips to help you create the types of interactive real estate Facebook ads that speak to the right audience.
Getting new leads with Facebook real estate marketing requires sifting through the multitude and streamlining your ad for the right people.
Targeting the Right People
Facebook’s Audience Insights
You can use Facebook Audience Insights to view the snapshot of people who are likely to engage with your brand. If you have a page, Facebook will create targeting criteria based on the interests and characteristics of people who already like your page. You get useful insights on education, net worth, interests, age, and gender. To access this tool, click on Audience Insights on your Facebook page’s dashboard. You then select from three options:
- Everyone on Facebook: Use information from people on Facebook to create a snapshot of your ideal audience.
- People connected to your page: Uses insights from people who already like your page to determine your ideal audience.
- A custom audience: Upload a list of custom audience from which Facebook displays simulated buyer persona information.
Split Testing Ads
You can test variations of your ad, running them to different groups of your audience to see which one performs best. Here is Facebook’s guide on creating split test ads.
The best way to create a split test is to test variations of whichever ad currently delivers good results. You can test different headlines for different groups. You can change descriptions or images and see which of these variations perform best.
Facebook Remarketing Pixel
The Facebook ads pixel tracks your website’s conversion information to target new users. For example, people who took an action on your website. What targeting criteria can be gleaned from existing prospects? A pixel targets new leads based on these criteria. Simply insert the Pixel code into your website’s backend and it monitors particular user behaviors to help you target the right people, improving ROI on your ads.
This is a very important targeting tool for real estate. Location targeting allows you to deliver your ads to people based on their location, probably by city or region. You would be presented with four targeting options. You can also select targeting radius to outline how far you want to target people in a particular location:
- Everyone recently in the location: Your ad is delivered to anyone who has recently visited the area or who live in that location.
- People who live in the location: Your ad will be delivered to anyone who has listed the area as their home.
- People recently in the location: With this, you’ll be reaching people who have been in the area recently.
- People traveling in the location: This determines people living in the area who are currently traveling.
You might want to create split ads using two of these criteria. And if you have more service areas, you can target different areas on a seasonal basis to avoid spending too much on bids. Ultimately, you should spend more on better performing ads.
Creating Engaging real estate Facebook ads
After navigating through the array of targeting options and tools, the next thing you want to do is create a captivating Facebook real estate marketing campaign. Your potential buyer is bombarded with a lot of information on Facebook, how do you make your ad stand out from the mass? Note that the new Facebook update focuses on interactions. This means that Facebook real estate marketing gimmicks that may work in the past would probably not work now. So your messaging needs to be bold and interactive.
A Facebook ad has four major text fields. Apart from your link, video or image, you’ll have a headline, news feed link description, and the main text.
The headline is the boldened part that appears under your image or video. The news feed link description would describe what you offer on the page you’re linking to. The main text is a short captivating piece of text that should appear over your image or video. Your CTA tells users what to do next. You’re free to customize it as you like.
- Make your headline short and sweet.
Adespresso, after analyzing over 752,000 Facebook ads found a constant variable in high performing ads. They found that the most popular headlines on Facebook are five words long.
They also dissected the text, description, and CTA of these ads for engagement and they found that the best ads contain
- Just 19 words of text. Effective Facebook ads are succinct and on point.
- 13 words link description. Longer link descriptions get truncated by Facebook’s 30 character limit.
- CTAs should depend on what you’re planning to do. Using no CTA at all could also work.
- Be creative with CTAs.
For most ads, a CTA would always redirect viewers to a landing page or form. But some real estate companies are seeing better results with CTAs that redirect users to chat via messenger. These “click to chat” CTA can help drive more conversions. You can even experiment with the ‘Call Now’ button which brings up a dial so viewers who are sold can call you directly. The ‘call now’ feature is fairly new and it’s only available with ‘local awareness’ or location-based ads. This GIF from advertisemint shows how it works.
- Don’t neglect mobile.
There is a broad shift towards mobile and mobile platforms. The Facebook app is the second most downloaded app all over the web. And Facebook messenger is the top mobile app by number of downloads. What this means is that you have to optimize your ad and content for mobile.
You have the option of targeting users on five different platforms, including Instagram and Messenger. Click here to learn more about Instagram ads.
A good idea would be split testing the same ad and optimizing for two different device types. You can choose both mobile and desktop and see which of these convert better. Mobile would probably perform better. Based on Facebook’s fourth quarter 2018 earnings, Facebook boasted $5.84 billion in earnings. Of that, $4.5 billion came from mobile devices. This means that more people are viewing Facebook via mobile.
- Optimize your Images.
With so much content on Facebook, you only have a short time to capture people’s attention. Each visit to Facebook lasts 10 to 12 minutes. You want to get and keep a user’s attention within this time frame. It’s a bit tough. But a way to try would be to use stunning images in your ads. If you’re opting for mobile ads, you might consider using carousel images, which allows you to show off multiple images in the same ad.
- Engage with Video Ads.
Videos have the best engagement rates on Facebook. However, as with posts and headlines, you want to make your video short and sweet. Videos longer than 60 seconds may get ignored. Kinetic Social’s report of 2 billion ad impressions found that 44% of 30-60 seconds videos were viewed to completion.
What do you offer?
You probably already have some ideas for your next Facebook ad. But the decisive point would be your offer.
What product are you selling? Where is it? And have you made it attractive enough? This could be an offer on your Facebook page, your listing page, a lead magnet or just great content.
Before you create ads, you need to have an engaging offer. Even if you’re using a messenger or click to call CTA, you should answer these two questions succinctly before creating an ad:
- Where are you driving people to? and
- Why should they care?
What’s your budget?
Be clear on how much you’re willing to spend to run your ads. How much you spend should depend on your goal. Trying to create brand awareness? You might need to run a low-budget, long term campaign. If you want to drive new leads, you should be prepared to spend some more. Also, the cost of running ads will depend on how long you’re planning to run ads, how many people you plan to reach, your target location if you’re targeting by location and possibly the time of day your ads will be running. You can use this calculator by adespresso to determine a potential budget for best ROI on your Facebook ads.
Is it working?
You might have to test some ad variants (A/B Testing) to find out what works best. Importantly, keep an eye on click throughs and cost per click. Measure your conversions using Facebook’s analytics. See how to track Facebook ad performance in this post.
Real estate agents who do not know how to use Facebook for real estate marketing are leaving a lot of cash on the table. With Facebook ads, you can create multi-platform ad campaigns that reach more people, even extending onto Instagram. You reach new people and capture new leads in exciting new ways without the need to distribute flyers all around town.
You can get people involved with your brand with Facebook videos that cost 10 times less than TV ads. Yet being able to combine different advertising formats through retargeting will help you create an impression that lasts much longer.