How To Set Up A Facebook Business Page For Real Estate

If you’re a real estate agent, broker, or manager, having a facebook business page dedicated to your real estate business is a great idea.

The main reason you want one is because Facebook works to generate leads.  Not only can you use it to create a network of prospects, clients, family, and friends that “like” you, but you can also use it for advertising on Facebook.

With over a Billion (yes, Billion) users actively using it each month, there are lots of people who are potential prospects for home buying and selling.

If you’re wondering how to set up Facebook business page so you can take full advantage of this audience, here’s the tutorial you’ve been looking for.

how to set up a facebook business page for real estate

Step One

Before you can set up a Facebook business page, you need to have a Facebook personal account.  If you don’t have that set up already, here’s how to do it.

Step Two

Head on over to https://www.facebook.com/pages/create.php so you can start your page.  You’ll have 6 different classifications to choose from.  As a real estate agent or brokerage, I’d recommend choosing the “Local Business” category.  Once you click that box, fill out the following info:

  • Choose “Real Estate” from the drop-down box.
  • Enter your business name.  Careful!  This will be the name of your Facebook Page.  It does not necessarily need to be the actual name of your business.  For example, you could name your page “Joe Smith, Real Estate Agent.”
  • Enter the rest of your contact information.

choose a facebook business page classification

Step Three:

Add the “About” section:

  • Type in “Real Estate” into the category section and then choose the most appropriate tag.
  • Add a few sentences regarding what your page is about.
  • Add your website, if you have one.
  • Choose a URL, which will be the web address of your facebook page (make it simple and short).
  • Click “save info.”

 

facebook page registration - about

Step Four:

Add a profile picture.  This is the main icon that will show up in the news feed.  An optimal image size is 180X180 pixels.

upload a facebook profile picture

Step Five:

Add your page to your favorites.  This will allow you to easily find your page in the left-hand navigation bar.

facebook registration favorites

Step Six:

Enter your preferred page audience.  You can add basic information such as location, age, gender, and interests.  I’d recommend adding the towns you service as the location.  You can consider targeting a certain gender, age range (if you tend to work with a younger or more mature audience), and adding real estate-related interests such as “zillow,” “trulia,” “real estate,” and/or other real estate interest topics.

audience preference for page registration

Step Seven:

Click on “About”.  At this point, you can then add more information under your page profile.  Although many of these fields will already be filled in, you can add additional information, such as hours, a longer description, and other items important for people to know.

page profile additional details

Step Eight:

Add a cover photo for you page.  If you don’t have one already, check out a free and easy tool like Canva that will allow you to create a Facebook cover photo with correct image dimensions of 851X315 pixels.

add facebook cover photo

Step Nine:

Add content to your page.  At this point, you have zero “likes” and no content.  So, add a new post to share information that you think people would like to know about.

Keep your content fresh, informative, and useful.  This means you should post at least 3 times per week and vary your content to be roughly 80% “non-sales” information (like community events) and 20% “sales” info (like your listings, open houses, testimonials, etc.).

When you post, consider what people would like to know about.  What images will appeal to them?  What local market stats might they want to know?  How can they be more informed home buyers and sellers?

Step Ten:

Now that you’ve got a completed page that looks great and has relevant content, you can start inviting people to your page.  Start with other agents in your office.  Next, ask people you know to like your page.  Third, ask your current clients and prospects to like your page.

Step Eleven:

Remember that a Facebook business page for your real estate business isn’t going to magically win you new clients just because you post new information about the local market.  You also won’t be a mega-agent just because you have a ton of Facebook fans.

What I’d recommend you do with this page is start running ads to get people into your “sales funnel.”  Yes, this process will cost some money, but it is the best way to make your Facebook business page generate legitimate real estate leads.

 

What Is A Facebook Custom Audience?

You can do some amazing things with Facebook Ads.  Of course, with any of our ads, our number one goal is to sell in one way or another to achieve a specific result.

What Is A Custom Audience?

One of the best ways that we can increase the effectiveness of our ads to maximize our results is to advertise to a group of people who already know who we are.  But how can we do that?  The answer is to use Facebook Custom Audiences.

So, what is a Facebook Custom Audience anyway?

facebook custom audiences

Well, it’s essentially a collection of people who already know us – or at least have a connection to us in one way or another.

Examples of people you already know in your real estate business that could be a Custom Audience are:

  • current clients you’re working with
  • past clients
  • prospects you keep in touch with
  • people you meet at open houses
  • contacts you get from your online lead generation activities
  • new people you meet at business-related social gatherings

The above examples are all groups of people who you likely already have some decent connection with and may have possibly even met with.

But what about lower-level prospects?  What about those people who have just come across you briefly online but haven’t made any real connection with you yet?  How can you use them as a Custom Audience?

Facebook is really helping you out here because they allow you to keep an “invisible list” of these people.  The way they do that is to allow you to add some special code to your website to keep track of visitors to your site.  You can even add this code to landing pages that may not be a part of your site so you can keep track of these people, too.

Why Are Custom Audiences So Important?

Custom Audiences are so important because they allow you to effectively and inexpensively reach the people who know you and are thus the most likely to do business with  you!

As a real estate agent, you’re busy with all types of activities trying to not only close existing deals, but also create new deals by staying in touch with people.

Think of Custom Audiences as the cheapest way to consistently and effectively be in front of people who are your next deals.  By automating ads that go out to these Custom Audiences and paying relatively little for them, you’ve got a reliable system of being top of mind that actually works.

Stay tuned for additional articles on Custom Audiences and how to integrate them into your real estate marketing…

 

29: How I’ll Triple My Real Estate Production In 2015

January, 2015 will mark the beginning of my 3rd year as an agent in residential real estate.  And I plan to triple my real estate production from what I did in 2014.  Here’s how.

Prior to being an agent, I ran (and still own but have delegated the management of) a pet services company where we get 90% of all our new business from the internet.  And the majority of this new business comes to us for free without paid advertising.

In fact, one of the reasons I got into real estate was because I felt I could leverage what I learned in this other business to produce real estate leads.

Well, as it turns out, some of my internet magic works for real estate, but I learned that a lot of it doesn’t produce results in quite the same way.  So I had to look for new solutions to get buyer and seller leads.

how to increase real estate production
Over the last 2 years I’ve experimented in all types of ways with internet-based lead generation techniques.  As I start year 3, here’s what I’m going to focus on.

Note that none of what I’m doing is related to traditional techniques of cold calling, door knocking, farming with direct mail, open houses, or other typical activities.  Further, I’m also not using any pay-per-click systems related to getting buyer leads with IDX or anything like that.

I truly feel that there is a NEW way to do things in real estate.  And I’m doubling-down on my bet by forgetting about every traditional technique I’ve been taught.

This is all I’m doing for the next year.  And I think that this 4-part approach is going to work:

1.  Facebook Ads

Facebook Ads are not at all related to what we’ve traditionally learned about Facebook and social media.  To me, the social media component of posting stuff to my Facebook timeline and getting “likes” is a bottomless pit of effort with no real tangible return.

Facebook Ads, on the other hand, give very specific results.  I know that if I spend X dollars, I will get Y number of leads.  If I don’t get as many leads as I want, then I know I need to change some component of the advertisement or lead capture process.

I’ll be using the ads for 3 main types of campaigns:

  1. Ads to bring cold traffic to sign up for a webinar
  2. “Retargeting-Loop” Ads for warm traffic
  3. “Custom Audience” Ads for those very familiar with me

See below for more info on the Webinars.

If you’re not sure what “retargeting” is, it’s a way for you to target ads only to people who have already come to your website.  So, for example, I’m going to be running ads to drive cold traffic to my website for local market updates.  Once they’ve been to my site and have some familiarity with me, I’ll be running retargeting ads directly to those people to have them sign up for a webinar or get other valuable content from me that’s specific to their interest (location, seller, buyer, etc.)

If you’re not familiar with “custom audiences,” it’s a way for you to target people you already have on some type of list.  So, for example, I’ll be uploading my list of clients and then running ads to those people every so often to remind them of my services and to think of me for referrals.

2.  Webinars

Webinars are online presentations.  I conduct these at my computer in my office and webinar attendees can watch and listen from where ever they are via phone, tablet, or computer.  It’s very convenient and cost effective.

Why webinars?  Well, the short answer is that they’re a great way for prospects (who are typically complete strangers) to get to know me and understand that I know what I’m talking about.

With webinars, people can see me live on video, hear my voice, get a sense of my personality, and learn something – all at the same time.

Plus, if a prospect is wiling to spend 45 minutes online with me, don’t you think they’re probably more serious than someone who spends 5 seconds clicking a PPC ad to sign up to get emails of new homes?  You bet they are.  Webinar attendees are A-level prospects for sure!

My webinars will revolve around seller and buyer-related topics.

3. My Email List

My list of real estate prospects is a crucial component to my plan.  Since you need to constantly be in contact with people, an automated email campaign is a must-have system to have in place.  Often referred to as a “drip campaign,” my email list will receive short messages from me generally related to buyer and seller tips and tricks.

4.  Video Testimonials and Referrals

You can’t go wrong with referrals, of course.  I’m definitely going to be more conscious of asking people for referrals and staying in contact with past clients.

Further, I’m taking the typical testimonial and cranking it up a few notches by getting video testimonials.  I’ve been able to get about 9 so far this past year.  Not everyone is wiling to be on camera, but I’ve noticed that those who are will typically be very excited to talk about me and my services.

These videos get uploaded to my youtube channel and put on my website.

 

Would you like to see how my plan turns out?

Get regular updates from me.  Copy my ideas and learn from me regarding things that go right and what went wrong by getting on my email list right now.

My list gets regular updates on what I’m doing and exactly how I’m doing it.  Plus, I often interview top agents to learn their story of what they’ve done to make it big in real estate.

All this is free, so make sure to get on my email list by clicking here.

What about you?  I’d love to learn how you’re going to make 2015 the best year ever. Leave a comment below.  Thanks!

24: Top 7 Ways To Improve Your Real Estate Facebook Ad Conversion

There are 10 gazillion facebook ads competing for your attention every time you visit their site.  Well, maybe it’s not quite that many, but it’s a lot, to be sure.

With that much competition, it’s imperative that you create ads that have a super-strong call-to-action so you can increase your conversion rate of your real estate ads.

What’s a “call-to-action” you ask?  Well, it’s basically the request that you’re making of the viewer.  Maybe you want them to sign up for something, download a free report, or take some other action.

When you’ve got a great call-to-action, the conversion rate of your ad goes up.  So, here are the top 7 ways to increase the effectiveness of your ad and drive that conversion higher and higher.

tips to increase facebook ad conversion rate
 

1.  Inspire Action

The whole point of your facebook ad is to get your prospect to take some type of action, right?  So, the very first thing any ad must accomplish is to tell the prospect exactly what it is that you want them to do next.

Use words that inspire and propel action.  Examples of these types of words include:  register, download, attend, visit, sign up, call, email, click, etc.

For example, if  you were trying to get someone to sign up for a webinar on home selling, your ad might say:

  • “Register for our Home Seller 101 webinar.  Click here to sign up.”

2.  Be Direct

People on facebook are in a passive state of mind.  They’re not looking for your real estate services.  So, you must be direct in what you are asking of them so they don’t have to think about it too hard.

If you want them to download a free home buyer checklist, be direct and say “Download this homebuyer checklist.”  Don’t confuse your prospect by sugar-coating your words and trying to make your offer sound fancier than it really is.  Just get to the point and make your call-to-action as direct as possible.

3.  Add A Deadline

When people are faced with a limited-time offer, they’re forced to make a decision or lose out.  So, adding a deadline and creating a sense of urgency helps people make their decision sooner rather than later (and hopefully they will decide right then and there).

If you’re advertising an open house, you have urgency built into the ad because there is a very specific time and date of the event.  If you’re advertising a webinar, again, you have a specific time and date and you could also throw in “limited space available.”

4.  Make It Free

Whatever it is you’re offering in your facebook ad, make it free.  Everyone loves free stuff.

Examples include:  Free home buyer checklist, Free webinar, Free home seller net sheet, Free list of local lenders/inspectors, etc.

You’re trying to increase your conversion rate, so don’t put a price on anything at the beginning.  Make your offer “free” and you’ll reduce the friction your prospect has to giving you their contact info.

5.  Introduce a Fear Factor

I don’t generally sell “fear” to my clients, but introducing a small bit of a “fear factor” can make a difference to some people.  No one wants to make a mistake, especially people who have already had a bad experience with a real estate agent or who have been involved with a real estate deal gone wrong.

Effective headlines that have a bit of fear built in include:  “don’t hire the wrong real estate agent”, “will your house ever sell?”, and “are you paying too much for your house?”

6.  Be Brief

Related to point #2 above, your ads should be brief as well as be direct.

No one is going to read a novel-length advertisement in their newsfeed.  So, your ad needs to be short and to the point.  It’s a mistake to try and warm people up with a bunch of copy before making your call-to-action pitch.  No one cares what you have to say.  Get right to the point and be brief.

7.  Use A Testimonial

One really cool thing about facebook is that it will essentially add testimonials to your ads for you.  For instance, if you’re advertising to a pool of people and a friend of someone in that pool has liked your ad, it will say “Sally Jenkins Likes This.”

But you don’t want to leave the testimonial piece entirely in facebook’s hands.  Instead, you can proactively highlight testimonials by including them in your ad.

Maybe you’ve got a high-profile client that is letting you use their image for your ad.  Or, more likely, you’re using a local client who has given you permission to use their picture or video for your marketing purposes.

Testimonials and recommendations can often help strangers trust you just that little bit extra to send them over the edge and take you up on your call-to-action request.

Summary

There is an art and a science to increasing your facebook ad conversion rate.  Use these tips and see your real estate ads perform better.

 

 

 

21: [TB] Does Facebook Work For Real Estate Agents?

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Does Facebook work for real estate agents?  Is it something that can help you generate real leads?

In my opinion…

…YES.

does facebook work for real estate agents?

First, it’s important to consider that Facebook is NOT a great fit for every business.  For example, besides being in real estate, I own a local pet services company where we do things like dog walking, running, and pet sitting.  Facebook doesn’t work that great for this type of business in terms of generating new customers (but it’s awesome for keeping current customers and generating referrals).

The reasons for this are many.  Chief among them though is that, unlike with real estate, people shop for dog walking services quickly and they’re proactive about it.

This means that they know what they’re looking for, do a search on the internet, and then are likely to give their business to the first seemingly-reputable business they can find.  It all happens within a matter of minutes.  So, to win in that game, you have to be found exactly when someone is looking for you.  That’s where organic SEO and Google PPC come into play.

However, in real estate, we know that this is not at all how things work.

Real estate shoppers aren’t looking for real estate agents.  They’re looking for homes or information about homes in regards to selling or buying.  Agents enter the picture only after they’ve already done research of some sort.

And, often, agents are only in the equation because that have to be, not necessarily because a home shopper wants them to be.

Plus, we know that home shoppers and sellers don’t start their research on the internet and then buy their dream home 10 minutes later.  Instead, the buying and selling cycles are typically drawn-out affairs that last for 3, 6, 12, or even 18 months or longer.

This might sound bad at first.  But it’s precisely because of this long sales cycle that helps Facebook be a great fit for real estate agents.

Second, it’s critical to know that Facebook won’t be successful for your real estate business based on the typical “social media” mindset that we’ve been taught for the last few years.

Instead, you should be thinking of Facebook as your “social advertising system” and not as just a place to post your latest open house info and latest community home sale stats.

Indeed, you’re going to have to pay a few bucks to make Facebook work for you as a real estate agent.  This “pay to play” mindset makes some people mad because they’ve been used to a free ride for so long.  But paid advertising really is the secret to generating real estate leads with Facebook.

You need to forget about the “old days” when you could post something and have 90% of your fans see it.

Now, you’re lucky if 10% of them see it.

That’s why you must adapt to how Facebook is working today.

You’ll need to get used to promoting posts (no, not with the “boost post” button, but with the Power Editor).  You’ll need to be able to create ads and “lead magnets” that get people into your sales funnel, email list, and/or into a Facebook custom audience.  And you’ll need to get used to building a relationship with these people and following up with them on Facebook, in paid ads, with email, and in other creative ways.

That last point is really where Facebook shines.  Remember that this is a place to build trust and a relationship over time.

Where most real estate lead generation systems like direct mail, cold-calling, and pay-per-click ads fail – or, at least break down – is that there’s a lack of relationship building.  Getting a complete stranger to trust you these days off of a one-time connection is brutally difficult.

So, face that facts and accept that instant conversions aren’t going to happen for you.  No one is going to go from stranger to your customer in 8 seconds.

Instead, embrace the opportunity of building a relationship.

It’s going to take some work, but this relationship-building is where Facebook is different from other lead generation things you can do.  And this is precisely why it can work for you as a real estate agent.

17: [TOOLBOX] Discover The #1 Secret To Generating Facebook Real Estate Leads

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The Secret

When I talk to agents, I find that Facebook to most of them is the most confusing and misunderstood marketing tool out there.  People really have no idea how to harness all the potential that it has.  And, it’s no wonder because Facebook changes their system almost every week.

generating leads with facebook

But, one thing always stays the same.  And that’s that Facebook wants you to do one thing: PAY THEM

Yep, if you want to reach your current audience or build a new one, you will need to fork over a few bucks.

And so the secret to generating new real estate leads on a continual and predicable basis with Facebook is to invest in and learn to utilize the Facebook Advertising system.

Before you write Facebook off because you have to “pay to play”, consider that this medium is, by far, the most economical, efficient, and powerful advertising system you could possibly use in your real estate business.  Facebook truly is a game changer as far as generating leads is concerned.

In fact, in my humble opinion, Facebook is the biggest bang for your real estate marketing buck…ever. Of course, this assumes you’re doing it correctly.  Because, when done incorrectly, it’s an incredible vacuum sucking your marketing budget dry faster than you thought was possible.

If you have any thoughts about using Facebook in your business, you just need to accept the fact that the days of using Facebook for business purposes for free are long gone.  If you’re not wiling to fork over a few bucks, then Facebook really isn’t for you unless you’re that extremely rare exception of the total social butterfly who has thousands and thousands of friends on a personal profile (not business profile) and you’re really, really good at networking.  In that case, you could likely still be generating a consistent flow of new leads by referral.  But, for the other 99.9% of us, the advertising route is going to be the way to go.

What Can You Do With Facebook Ads?

One of the really amazing things about Facebook Ads is that they allow you to do pretty much any type of advertising you can do with other mediums, but in a better, faster, and cheaper way.  Here’s just a few basic ideas:

  • target a geographic farm
  • target a list of your past clients for referrals
  • keep advertising to A, B, and C-level prospects with various campaigns
  • offer items of value to current and new prospects
  • reach thousands (or tens of thousands) of people directly in your local area
  • promote an open house
  • promote a “just listed” or “just sold” campaign
  • target an incredibly-focused demographic of sellers and/or buyers
  • you can even keep track of those who clicked on your ad but did not provide you with their contact information

And you can do a lot of this for $10 to $50 at a time – and get results!!!

Here’s The Key To Generating Leads

Now that you know that the secret to using Facebook is to incorporate paid advertising, the key to generate leads is by placing ads that target a specific type of person with a specific offer.

You use various offers to entice people to take the action you request in your ad.  Maybe it’s to exchange something of value for their contact info.  Or, maybe you’re just promoting a piece of content that people interact with so that you can then track and serve more ads to these people.

There are a variety of ways to use Facebook Ads.  Remember that the Facebook platform cannot support over a billion users for free and the resources they give you to advertise in amazingly powerful ways are worthwhile to learn and invest in.