What started out as a project inside a Harvard dorm room has exploded to a cultural phenomenon, reinventing the way we connect with each other around the globe. Facebook is a social media giant that people use to connect with friends and family, watch videos, get news updates, and maybe even do some networking. Latest stats in 2017 show approximately 1.32 billion people on average log onto Facebook daily.
Now, what if you started to look at Facebook as a whole new marketing tool? As an inbound marketing channel that can pull in leads for you – good, quality leads. Would you invest more time in it?
Other industries have been very successfully using Facebook to generate leads but for some reason, the real estate industry has been lagging behind. Up until now, many agents have been using the ‘shotgun’ approach, which in the context of marketing, is a strategy where a promotional campaign for services or products targets as large of an area or population as possible..
Other people are “boosting their posts” so that’s what they do. Someone else is running a page ad targeted towards a specific city or neighbourhood, so that’s what they do. It’s time to shake things up!
Treat your Facebook page as an inbound marketing channel
Inbound marketing focuses on creating quality content that naturally attracts people to your business. It uses digital content such as blogs, and social media – to create brand awareness and attract new clients. By aligning the content you publish with your target client’s needs and interests, you can naturally attract inbound traffic that can be converted, closed and delighted over time.
So, how do you actually do this on Facebook?
Run Facebook Lead Ads
Lead ads on Facebook (and Instagram) help you collect information from people interested in your business. The ads are designed to let people show their interest in your service by filling out a form in the ad with their details. By doing so, they are allowing you to follow up with them.
The information collected in a lead ad includes, but isn’t limited to, names, email addresses and phone numbers. You can even ask people custom questions that you care about (e.g., What services are you interested in?). To promote form completion, we suggest keeping questions short and sweet. Collecting names and email addresses may be perfectly sufficient to get the ball rolling.
When you create your ad, use a high-quality, eyecatching image with minimal text and a clear call to action. Write a clear and engaging caption to accompany your image. An effective caption might look something like this: “Imagine coming home to this gorgeous 4 bedroom home in Lawrence Park. Click for listing.”
Before you launch your ad, view how it displays on desktop as well as mobile. You want to ensure that it looks great on both.
Use Facebook videos to promote lead gen offers
Facebook’s organic reach dropped to 52% in 2016, thanks to the tweaks in Facebook’s algorithm, but videos are the big exception here. Did you know that video posts have 135% greater organic reach than photo posts? Video gets solid engagement rates, and they are a great way to connect with your clients in a more interactive way. Create videos to help introduce and promote lead-generating content, whether they’re offers, open houses, or something else.
In addition to the text CTA you can add your CTA in the video’s description. Remember to also add a verbal CTA to the video. Remind your followers to “sign up for my newsletter” or “visit our open house,” both early in the video and at the very end.And if you are hesitating because you feel awkward putting yourself on camera, guess what. So does everyone else! To conquer your fears, practice recording yourself at home, plan out what you’re going to say in advance and work at getting more comfortable being on screen. Create multiple takes if you have to until you feel comfortable with the rsult. And remember, your video doesn’t have to be perfect; believe it or not, people tend to respond well to authentic, uncut video.
Post Relevant, Valuable Content
When you attract new followers to your Facebook page, you want to keep them engaged, so that when the time comes for them to buy or sell, they approach you to help them. Building trust with new prospects can take time, and posting relevant, valuable content on your Facebook business page can help.
Content that “sells” your services, including your listings and testimonials, should make up less than one-third of all content that appears on your Facebook business page. Keep things interesting by posting a variety of topics on your page. Post relevant industry or local news, new blog posts, videos, photos, helpful tips, and other types of content. Think about the issues that are important to your target audience, and create posts around those. Switch up your ads regularly so your audience is always seeing fresh content.
Nurture, Nurture, Nurture
The lead to customer conversion time frame for a well-optimized Facebook Ads campaign is anywhere from one to twelve months or more. This means that at least 50% of the effort needs to focus on how you nurture your leads after getting them. Once you have acquired precious email signups from your Facebook ads, build your relationship with these contacts carefully. Segment your email list, deliver targeted email content and avoid making these common mistakes.
Facebook is a powerful tool for lead generation when used strategically. Even if you don’t have a ton of “likes” on your page, if you start approaching your Facebook page as an inbound marketing tool you can build quality leads and watch your email list soar.