It’s now, more than ever, pay to play in the world of social media. Long gone are the days of free exposure on social media that is worth anything.
If you want to be seen, then you need to be considering how you can utilise social ad management systems to give your content the boost it needs.
It’s not all doom and gloom though. Facebook’s Ad Platform provides the most cost-effective and precise demographic, geographic and behavioural target marketing and client data.
Here we share five Facebook Ad tactics that you probably aren’t utilising, but you definitely should be!
1. Import your database as custom audience
As we all know, it’s easier to sell to existing clients than to look for new ones.
Facebook Custom Audience allows you to create a list of either email addresses or phone numbers of contacts that you already have, and within a few simple steps, you can advertise directly to them on Facebook.
If you have a client list of prospective home buyers or sellers, members of the community in your target market, vendors and suppliers, you’re ready to get started.
The simple steps to follow are:
1. Create a list of either email addresses or phone numbers using your client data.
2. Save your client list in CSV or TXT format.
3. Go to the Audiences tab in Facebook’s Ads Manager.
4. Click the Create Audience button, select the Custom Audience option and then choose Customer List.
5. Upload the CSV or TXT file client list that you previously saved.
6. Your Custom Audience will then be ready within minutes.
Once you have created your custom audience, you can create an ad that will appear across the Facebook Advertising network, including your audience’s News Fee, the right-hand column and on any device.
BONUS: Make sure to import the phone numbers as well. Most people have their Facebook somewhat identified by their phone number over their email, so you’re more likely to see more of your database added to your audience. Only those people in your database who are found by the information in your database will be added to your audience.
2. Dynamic Ads to re-market to property viewers
Many real estate agents have a number of properties or listings in their portfolio at one time. The power of Facebook Dynamic Ads allows agents to create ads that target people who have browsed specific properties on your website and display the very property and information that they were looking at on their Facebook News Feed.
This Dynamic Ad feature saves agents from having to create dozens of ads for all of their property listings, with the ads made specific to what their potential buyer or seller has shown direct interest in.
To create Dynamic Ads, you’ll need to have a product catalog set up within your Facebook account. Given that agents normally have a regular turnover of properties, we recommend setting up an XML format catalog feed on your site so that updating properties will still keep these ads on autopilot. To do this, you might need the help of your web developer or code-savvy digital marketer.
To optimise this advertising format, you will need to set up a Facebook catalog and add the Facebook pixel to your website or App Events to your app. This will let you track and target your potential clients.
There is some good value in running these ads, and it saves serious time to reach out to interested prospects.
3. Driving traffic to your site instead of other portals
When you send an audience to one of the property portals, they own the data around the audience.
When you send people to your site, you can own the audience’s data for re-marketing, creating more optimised future campaigns and running great ad campaigns like Dynamic Ads and marketing to your database (only to those who’ve recently engaged on social media).
What many agents don’t realise is that it is more beneficial to drive traffic to your own website and begin collecting and controlling your visitor information.
Driving traffic to your website allows you to collect demographic and geographic location data about your visitors. You can view facts about what specific properties and pages of your website they are interested in, and most importantly, you will be able to leverage the above-mentioned Facebook Ad methods!
4. Video ads to drive awareness and engagement
They say “a picture speaks a thousand words”.
Video is the next level when it comes to storytelling.
In real estate, being able to show a video of the character and charm of your properties will give your potential buyers a real sense of living in that home. Video advertising is a great way to drive awareness and engagement of your property listings.
The optimal video length is generally less than two minutes. If you don’t have the budget to create a video with full production quality, you might consider making a slideshow from your images so that you can still benefit from the power of video.
There are some great tools out there for video creation like Adobe Spark, which is free.
5. Lead generation ads for appraisals
This last one should be considered in a broader digital marketing plan.
For example, you are running some videos for awareness, driving traffic to your site via some of your more popular or new properties, then utilising a Dynamic Product ad campaign re-marketing to those people who are engaging with the content on your website and Facebook News Feed.
From here, if you can identify those people who are potentially interested in selling their property, you can run lead generation campaigns offering a no-obligation free appraisal of their property.
Facebook Lead Ads let people show their interest in your property listing or services by filling out a contact form in the ad with their personal contact details and allowing a real estate agent to follow up with them. You can request email addresses and phone numbers as well as ask custom questions.
This is a hard sell and we don’t recommend this being your only form of advertising. People want to see the types of property you sell and how you utilise technologies like social media to get the job done.
As a result, it’s better to subtly sell through your work and use a lead generation campaign as a final stage to a campaign, as to not oversell and put people off. You can do this by hyper-targeting. For example, this may mean that you target those people who are engaged such as current home owners with a mortgage, those who visited the about page of your website in the last 30 days and those who live within your target location.
Josh is the founder of Knackmap, a social media marketing technology company. It creates solutions to challenging business problems online.