By the end of 2017, there were more than 2 million active users each month on Facebook – a 16 percent increase over the same time period in 2016 and further proof that Mark Zuckerberg’s brainchild of a platform is still thriving. For real estate agents, it’s more important than ever that digital marketing strategies incorporate the ‘Book, but what can you do beyond maintaining your profile and posting relevant information as often as you’re able? As it turns out, there are an awful lot of ways Facebook can help you connect with clients, sell homes and earn a bigger commission. Here are four:
1. Start a Facebook Group
You already have a professional Facebook page, right? Good! Now, connect that page to a Facebook group of your very own creation. It’s easy to do, and that private community will serve as your go-to spot for new and prospective clients to gather info without taxing the resources at your brick-and-mortar location. In other words, they can ask questions in the group instead of calling your office. Some brokers encourage group members to post their property search parameters so they can get on an MLS email list. Others use the group to share details about upcoming open houses and new, under-construction developments. There are a ton of strategies you can employee, but they all start with setting up the group itself.
2. Play With Facebook Ads
To get around Facebook’s new friends-and-family centric algorithms, real estate agents will need to understand and utilize key Facebook Ad tools more than ever.
- Build Custom Audiences:Your instinct may be to use ads to cast a wide net and snare as many people as possible, but that’s both ineffective and expensive. Facebook ads tend to work best when you narrow down your focus so you can tailor the ad copy and imagery to each niche demographic. Do this by building custom audiences; you can upload a CSV file containing all the information from your client database, and Facebook will help you connect with them online. Then, you can reach out to those people specifically. Some may be looking to buy, sell or rent again, while others will recognize your name and happily share the ad or sponsored post with their own networks.
- Use Behavioral Categories: Target your ads using Facebook’s behavioral categories. The Facebook team is constantly collecting data about its users and then translating that information into advertising subsets. You can reach out to people who are likely to move, those who have new jobs or people who are getting married and/or expecting a child. Those life changes often correlate with a desire to move, and that’s where you come in.
- Get Local: Segment your ad audience by ZIP code, and suddenly you’re reaching only those people for whom your information is most significant. When you’re paying per click or per impression, the type of eyes you have on your ad becomes even more important (and expensive).
3. Host an Online Event and Juice Your Commission Advance
It’s hard to get people to leave their homes to attend an informational seminar at your real-world office, but they can check into an online event in comfortable clothes and without hiring a babysitter. Facebook Live is the perfect medium conducting a real estate Q&A in real time. Advertise the time and date, send invites out to everyone in your Facebook group and build your authority (and your commission advance) as the world watches.
Facebook can be daunting for anyone unfamiliar with the intricacies of social media, but start slowly, implementing one idea at a time, and those small success – and not-so-small commissions – will add up quicker than you think.