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On any given week, I field tons of calls from Realtors® that want to discuss marketing, and in the course of discussion they reveal to me that they don’t like Facebook advertising, it doesn’t work for them and it’s outdated. 99.9% of the time, with a little additional probing and asking questions, I always come to find out one thing:
They were right about only one thing. It didn’t work for them.
The truth of the matter though is that it didn’t work for them because they are going about it all wrong. There are many reasons we find, however there are three culprits, time and time again, that pop up and rear their ugly heads. Today I want to share these three things with you, in the hopes that you’ll own up to the fact that you may have been doing it wrong, and take another pass at something that can really help you grow your Real Estate Practice, and increase your marketplace visibility in ways you never thought possible.
You Can’t Take An “I’ll Have A #1” Approach To Your Marketing Plan
The thing I find most interesting about Realtors® embarking on a marketing plan is their willingness to invest a large chunk of their income into the campaign itself, but at the end of the day, they really haven’t researched or put any thought into whether or not the messages they will be sending will resonate, at all, with the people that live in their marketplace.
When it comes to this, I actually don’t blame the Realtor®. I blame the vendor they are using. Too often Real Estate agents end up teaming up with vendors and not marketing partners. Vendors do nothing other than push their product or service, to sell as much of it as possible, to make money. This does not make for a good partnership.
You want to work with an actual Marketing Agency that will help you define your goals, define your ideal client’s personas and put together a schedule and draft content that will resonate with these people, turning them into prospects, so you can get them in your pipeline and turn them into clients.
CONSISTENCY Has To Be Your Mantra
At this point, given the number of times I’ve written about this, and given that this is a staple of any good marketing educators lecture, if you aren’t consistent, it’s just not going to work. Consistency is EVERYTHING when it comes to your Real Estate Facebook ads.
The most common reasons we see a lapse in consistency have to do with either not planning out your marketing campaign in advance, or biting off more than you can chew when it comes to the number of marketplaces you are marketing to and the size of your ad budget. First, you must realize that you are the one that “wears all the hats”. Rest assured you are going to get super swamped and if you don’t have ALL your marketing messages planned out a year in advance, or you do not have a Marketing Agency to help you, you will drop the ball on your marketing, devoting time to your current deals and clients, and your marketing efforts will fail.
Secondly, you have to remember that marketing is a process. If you figure it’s going to take 4-8 months to really break into your marketplace and start seeing measurable results, YOU MUST pick a manageable number of zip codes and monthly ad budget so you can afford to do it, every single month, without fail. There are no exceptions to this rule. If you can’t afford to do that, shrink the size of target marketplaces. You DO NOT want to run out of money and have to completely stop marketing, before you get to that milestone date. If you do, you not only failed, but wasted a ton of your money in the process.
Track And Follow Up Accordingly
The other very common thing we find when speaking with people about their marketing campaigns is that when they say their Facebook ads didn’t work, they actually have no real idea or basis to make that assertion. The reason for this is that they have no way of tracking their ads and simply rely on the homeowner to comment or like their ad, or call them on the phone and say they saw their ad. This is a very poor plan.
This day in age, technology gives Realtors FANTASTIC ways to track the effectiveness of their campagins. Using the pre-built lead capture forms in facebook is actually the easiest, and one of my favorite ways to capture people’s info. The form will auto-fill with the homeowner’s name, mobile phone and email address, so the barrier of entry to get them to submit that form is low, making it highly likely they will.
Without capture forms, a homeowner may look at your ad, think in the back of their mind that when they are ready, they’ll call you, and then perhaps months later, hopefully remember to follow up with you. Had you known in the beginning they might be interested in working with you in the future, you would have had the luxury of using those months to keep dripping follow up messages on them and cultivating them as a qualified lead that would not forget you exist.
So there you have it. While I cannot say that Facebook ads work 100% of the time for all agents, in all marketplaces, I can firmly say that of the people that we come across that claim it doesn’t work at all, a good 98% of them have fallen into one of these traps. Don’t be that Realtor® 🙂 Plan your campaigns, be realistic, track your results and cultivate your leads.