The marketing landscape nowadays is extensive, varied and full of opportunity. Despite being crowded with millions of advertisers, the ability to reach your target market with a customized message and offer has ever been easier or cheaper. Joining Facebook ads and real estate is a massive opportunity that many realtors and agencies are still massively underutilizing. So in this post, I want to provide clarity and actionable steps for you to start implementing this tool.
This blueprint will be using a lead magnet strategy for Facebook ads. The primary objective of a good lead magnet is to provide something of high perceived value (often for free) in exchange for a prospect’s email.
The benefits of using a lead magnet are many but include quickly warming up a cold audience to you and your brand, generating a list of qualified prospect from which you can communicate with for free (via email marketing) and standing out from competitors by providing unique value and building trust, rapport and authority within your industry.
Real estate is a game of frequent negotiations, late nights, numerous back-and-forth communications, contract gymnastics and patience. Often, the hard work that you put in upfront doesn’t always pay off in accepted offers and sales.
This is why Facebook ads can be so effective. You can essentially screen and qualify prospects to suit your preferences while building an owned list of interested buyers outside of your brokerage. And it all starts with effective targeting and providing irresistible value to people.
That’s why the focus for this post is on lead magnets and prospect targeting. These two elements are crucial for Facebook ad success as a Realtor.
Before we get started here are few things you’ll need:
- A Facebook Business Manager Account
- Don’t worry, it’s completely free
- A Facebook Business Page
- This will be the page that you run ads from
- Ideally, this shouldn’t be your personal profile, but rather a professional business page
- An Advertising Budget
- More is better, but at least $100 to start with testing and familiarizing yourself with the platform
- An Offer & Target Market
- No worries if you don’t have these items figured out yet, I’ll be discussing them in more detail later on!
- A Landing Page Software or External Site to Send Traffic to (*optional but recommended)
- Create Your Audience(s)
- Your Offer
- Creating A Great Landing Page
- Landing Page& Sales Funnel Tools
- Creating the Campaign
- How to Make Professional Real Estate Video Ads for Free
- Launching the Campaign: Tips
- Followup Communication & Retargeting Campaigns
- Other Ad Campaign Strategies
1. Create Your Audience(2)
Every effective campaign starts with clearly identifying the target audience.
Perhaps it’s obvious, but targeting your market with the right message and the right offer are critical first steps to realizing any positive ROIs with a Facebook ad campaign.
And this is true regardless of any industry, offer or target market.
So in this section, I’ll be walking you through how to create a target market inside the Facebook Business Manager.
I’ll also be providing a visual guide and building out a mock real estate audience (which you can feel free to copy and simply change out any relevant information – such as location).
So let’s dive in!
*Note: Facebook frequently updates their platform design, so your screen may look slightly different from below. However, the process should be about the same and the buttons located easy enough.
Go to Audiences Inside Your Facebook Business Manager
Click On Create Audience and Select Saved Audience From the Drop-down
Name the Audience and Choose Your Target Audience’s Location(s), Age Range and Language
Scroll Down and Put in Detailed Targeting
- I put in first time home buyers and selected Colorado because that was the location I set
- After you find one detailed targeting, click on the Suggestions tab to bring up more ideas
You Can Also Select Exclude People or Narrow Audience to Make Your Audience More Niche or to Make the Audience Size Smaller
Hit Create Audience when finished
That’s pretty much all that’s required to make a new saved audience. I recommend you try making a few more audiences though.
It’s good practice to test multiple audiences when you’re making a new campaign. So the more, the better.
Also remember the name of your saved audience(s) because when we actually create the campaign, we will be selecting them from a drop-down.
You can also create an audience inside the campaign, but I like to do this beforehand for my own organizational purposes and so I can have a list of saved audiences from which to use or reference to at any point.
2. Your Offer
Creating an effective offer requires that you create something very specific and irresistible for a specific target audience. In this way, you may have multiple offers (and messaging) that are targeting different audiences.
To keep things simple when starting however, you can choose just one core offer and a few audiences to test.
To keep it customized, you can simple change out the messaging and landing page to suit the audience.
I’ve provided a short list of some common lead magnet offers you may consider using for your campaign. Each of the examples have merit and this list is by no means comprehensive.
When deciding on an offer, it’s important to think about how you can differentiate yourself and provide an offer that’s actually enticing.
To do this:
- Understand Your Audience
- What are their problems and pain points?
- How can you provide a quick solution to those problems or pain points?
- What are their values? (good school district, safety, affordability, beauty and aesthetics, DIY and fixer uppers, etc., rental income potential)
- Have one offer per audience (i.e., don’t send the same fixer upper related offer to someone who’s top priority is family and neighborhood safety)
- Consider Your Unique Skills, Knowledge or Experience
- Are you naturally charismatic in front of a camera?
- Are you good with computers or video editing?
- Are you a good writer or do you have extensive expertise in a particular area related to real estate?
- Identify the Market You Operate In
- Is there a lot of competition?
- What are your main competitors doing and what are their offers?
- How can you make your offer better and more enticing than your competitors?
- Do you operate in a small town that values relationships?
- Is your area upper-class? Single family homes? Young families?
- Provide A Quick, Actionable Win For Your Target Customers
- You want to provide real value to your target market
- Give them a solution to a real problem that’s easy and quick to consume
After analyzing and critically examining yourself, your audience and your market, you can better choose an appropriate lead magnet offer.
Here is a short list of some common lead magnet for real estate agents:
- A Free Downloadable PDF
- Bonus Offers
- Free house cleaning coupons
- Free home design consultation or home staging offers
- Neighborhood Safety and/or School Ranking Report
- Property Value Forecast Report
- Average Rental Potential Report
- Free Gift, Consultation or Complimentary Service
- Free eBook
- It’s extra work, but you could even write this using your industry experience!
- Email Newsletter Signup to Receive Pocket Listings
- A Free House Valuation or Market Report
3. Creating A Great Landing Page
Although you can create a lead generation form directly inside Facebook (so people don’t have to leave Facebook at all), there can be potential drawbacks to this method.
I get it though, on-site Facebook lead capture forms can definitely be simpler to employ rather than using external lead capture pages.
But if your offers are more expensive and/or complicated, then your sales funnels will tend to be longer and have various followup communication and retargeting ads.
In these situations, it’s helpful to adopt a more robust framework for your ad strategy using various landing pages and messaging.
Using a landing page gives you the opportunity to fully pitch your offer with more extensive messaging and content.
Ultimately, this will help you:
- Sell more effectively with a beautifully designed, specific sales page
- More effectively collect data to track your website visitors for ad retargeting
- And this is an essential step for successful Facebook ads (step 6 below covers this topic in more detail)
You can even segment your landing page/website visitors based on specific engagement or on-site behaviors.
For example, knowing how much time someone spent on your site, what buttons they clicked on, how engaged with the material they were and how active they were can better guide your ad retargeting to best spend your budget on only the most engaged prospects.
Still, testing Facebook’s lead capture forms may prove to be effective depending on your objective, offer, target audience, messaging and campaign design.
As another example, creating a captivating and engaging video introducing some exclusive property, content or offer (with effective audience targeting) can be highly effective for lead generation.
Here, you could simply add a lead capture form and a call to action directly inside Facebook for people to leave their email and contact info (should they want more information or to claim the specific offer).
So you’ll want to decide which method works best for you, your offer, your audience and your preferences and budget.
But again, both strategies can work well.
Just remember, regardless of the method you choose, it’s always good to test multiple strategies to find which performs best.
Landing Page & Sales Funnel Tools
- Builderall (free plan)
- Many impressive features including membership sites, chat bots, blogging app, email marketing, website sharing, scarcity timers, etc.
- Ucraft (free plan)
- Simple, no frills software with industry-specific templates
- GetResponse ($15/month; 30-day free trial)
- Comes with powerful, industry-leading email automation software
- Automates your marketing funnels with landing pages, upsells and downsells
- ClickFunnels ($97/month; 14-day free trial)
- Highly engaged and active community with extensive training material and online resources
- Sharefunnels and many existing real estate templates that are high quality, professional and free for members
If you do decide create a landing page and use it for your campaign, this will be the destination URL that you will be putting into the Facebook ad campaign.
You should take note here that although many of the options have free plans, you’ll likely need to upgrade to a paid membership to use an owned domain.
Facebook can be funny about destination URLs that are not owned (for example “clickfunnels.yoursite.com”). As such, after you explore one of the landing page builders above, you may be required to upgrade at some point.
Many of them however are still very affordable, with Builderall for example coming in at just $19.90/month, which gives you up to 3 domains.
Recommended Read: 12 Ways to Make & Optimize For A Good Landing Page
$$ Tip Jar
If you decide to use Builderall or ClickFunnels, you can share your landing page templates with other real estate agents (or anyone really) by using a unique share funnel link.
If they sign up from your referral, you’ll receive monthly, recurring commissions from their membership.
This can be a great way to easily subsidize the software’s cost while also becoming a passive income stream.
4. Creating The Campaign
Once you have all the above details figured out, we can start building the actual Facebook ad campaign.
To do this we’ll first need to navigate into the Facebook Business Manager.
I’d like to note here that if this is your first time using Facebook’s Business Manager, I definitely recommend you spend some time exploring the platform and the different pages.
Although it may look overwhelming for beginners, if you just hop around to the different areas (and follow this guide as well), I think you’ll quickly become familiar with the interface
And lastly, before we dive in, you should know that every Facebook ad campaign will have 3 levels:
- This is where you can set your campaign name, budget and objective
- Ad Set
- This is where you can edit things like your audience and ad placement
- This is where you create your actual ad, text and creatives
OK, if you’re ready, simply follow along with the steps below to create your campaign!
Inside the Facebook Business Manager, Click On Ads Manager
Then Click On Create to Make A New Campaign
*If you notice the tabs at the top, you’ll see the 3 levels I mentioned above: Campaign, Ad Set and Ad. The Account Overview tab gives an overall summary of everything’s that’s going on.
You Have 2 Options Now:
- Fill in the Necessary Blanks and Proceed by Hitting Save to Draft at the Bottom (Quick Creation)
- Opt For Guided Creation Which Will Walk You Through the Process
- This is great if you’re new to Facebook ads and/or digital marketing
- The rest of this visual guide will be using this approach
We’ll be Going With the Lead Generation Objective For This Tutorial
Go Ahead and Give Your Campaign A Name, Set Your Daily Budget (i.e., the maximum amount you want to spend per day) and hit Continue
- Although I’ve left it toggled off, you can split-test different variables, a great thing to try for your future campaigns!
- Campaign Budget Optimization should be toggled on, which will automatically put your ad spend into the only most profitable ads and ad sets
- My daily budget says $100, but you can go with just $5-10/day to start!
Now You’ll Need to Choose the Facebook Page You’ll Be Running Ads From
- Remember, you probably don’t want to be running ads from your personal Facebook profile
- Dynamic Creative lets you add variations in your text, headlines and images/videos to test for the best performing combinations
- Catalog is for eCommerce if you have an online store synced with Facebook
Next, Scroll Down to Audience and Find and Select the Audience You Created (from above) Under the Use Saved Audience Menu
Scroll Down to Placements and Leave Automatic Placements Selected.
Then Scroll Down and Hit Continue.
- Manual Placements lets you choose the different locations your ads will show
- This can be useful if you want to run an Instagram-only campaign for example
*Note: If you happen to see any Error messages, don’t worry, this happens sometimes. Just click the button to fix them before continuing.
On the Next Screen, We’ll Start Building the Actual Ad
Scroll Through and Select the Format You’d Like For Your Ad, Upload the Image or Video You’d Like and Add Your Text, Headlines and Any Links. Also Choose a Call to Action That Makes the Most Sense.
You’ll Then Come Across Instant Form. Here, You Can Create A New Form, Which Will Be Used to Capture Leads Directly On Facebook (because we chose the Lead Generation Objective)
When You’ve Finished Here, You Can Keep Scrolling Down and Hit the Confirm Button.
Regardless of the route you take, you’ll be required to choose an objective for your campaign. This is important because this determines how the Facebook algorithm will behave and the type of people your ad will be shown to. Here is a quick breakdown of your options:
- Brand Awareness
- App Installs
- Video Views
- Lead Generation
- Catalog Sales
- Store Traffic
For our purposes here, you can narrow your objectives down to either Awareness, Traffic, Engagement, Video Views, Lead Generation or Conversions.
The other objectives are either beyond the scope of this post or not related to your niche (for example, Catalog Sales is for eCommerce sites).
How To Make Professional Real Estate Video Ads For Free
I’ve mentioned briefly about video and hinted how it performs better. Well, this truth is that video consistently converts better and outperforms compared to images and other creatives.
This is why it’s so crucial to start using video as soon as possible in your campaigns.
Luckily, it doesn’t require any technical experience or any large budgets to get started.
In fact, you can start using pre-made, professional quality real estate video ads completely for free right now.
Allow me to introduce a few tools that will let you create, edit and manage beautiful, high quality videos (for your advertising efforts or any other online uses).
- Renderforest (free plan)
- Make videos, animations, presentations, intros and outros, music visualizations and more
- Make free logos
- Make websites and landing pages
- Wave.Video (free plan)
- Make beautiful, professional quality marketing and social media videos
- Promo ($49/month; 2 months free)
- Unique and eye-catching marketing videos and templates with user-friendly interface for creating and editing
- *$39/month if you buy the annual plan
5. Launching The Campaign: Tips
So if everything is set up and you’ve got your video or images uploaded, your text written and your destination links added, you’re ready to launch your campaign.
To make sure everything goes smooth and your ads are approved, here is a quick checklist of things to double check:
- Make sure there are no error messages
- Double check that your titles, descriptions, creatives and URLs are Facebook ad compliant
- After launching, it can take up to 24 hours (or longer) for your ads to be approved
- So just sit tight!
- Don’t Make Any Changes to Your Campaign For At Least 3 Days
- The algorithm takes time to start optimizing
- You Can Pause & Scale Campaigns, Ad Sets & Ads Any Time
- Pause the under-performing ones
- Scale the best performing ads and ad set by increasing the budget to reach more people
6. Followup Communication & Retargeting Campaigns
Making sales and conversions using Facebook ads requires retargeting. In fact, the rule of 7 states that customers can require up to 7 (or more) contact points before they actually purchase a product or service from a business.
This level of retargeting is often done through email followup and Facebook retargeting ads.
Now for real estate, you obviously won’t be making any (house) sales directly through Facebook.
But implementing an effective retargeting strategy will enable you to better capture leads, build relationships and further engage with your customers in a way that strengthens your brand and builds awareness.
If a prospect did not complete some desired action after the first ad (i.e., they didn’t submit their email), there could be a variety of reasons why.
Sure, perhaps they just weren’t interested.
But other common reasons could be something came up and they had to go, they decided to do further research, they got distracted, their computer ran out of battery or froze, they spilled their coffee, the doorbell rang and they forgot to complete the form.
As you know from experience, it’s often easier to get distracted than to stay focused and complete some advertiser’s action.
So by retargeting these prospects that showed initial interest (but never completed the desired action), you’re creating another opportunity for them to claim your offer while simultaneously strengthening their awareness of you.
To do this, the process is pretty much the same as a regular campaign, except you’ll need to of course customize your messaging and details and also create a custom audience.
So let’s look at how to do this.
Go to Audiences Inside Your Facebook Business Manager
Click On Create Audience and Choose Custom Audience From the Drop-Down
Next Select the Source of Your Retargeting Campaign and Follow the Steps
These are common sources:
- Website (website visitors and data from your Facebook pixel)
- Customer List (if you have an email list, you can upload that here)
- Video (if you’re retargeting people who viewed a previous video ad/post)
After creating this custom audience, you’ll then create and launch a new campaign in your Ads Manager that is customized for this particular group of people.
Recommended Read: A Foolproof Guide to Facebook Retargeting
7. Other Ad Campaign Strategies
- Open House Ads
- Self Promotion/Brand Ads
- Don’t ask for anything, rather just softly introduce yourself and let people know who you are and what you represent
- A personal, raw video (recorded on your phone) would do great here
- New House on the Market Ads
- Interactive Ads
- For example, make a quiz-style ad for people to guess the true market value of home in your area
- Then, they can find out if they were correct by visiting your landing page or (if you want) by submitting their email
- After visiting your landing page, you retarget these people with followup ads
- Since they will now recognize you, they will be more open to any potential offers
- Free + Shipping Campaigns
- Essentially, you give away something for free and they only have to cover the shipping costs
- You want to set the shipping costs to at least break even
- You can add similar, complimentary products as one-click upsells during checkout to increase the average cart value
- For example, if you like art and design, you could create and upload free designs onto t-shirts, phone cases, pillows and more using a free service like Teespring (via print-on-demand)
- Then, whenever someone visits your Teespring store and orders one of your designs, they pay a heavily discounted price for some original, cool design
- You need to have your audience targeting dialed in for a specific subset of your audience that are both in the housing market but also meet some other interest-based criteria that your design would appeal to (sports, yoga, beer, travel, food/cooking, etc.)
- If you’d like a full tutorial on using Teespring and the print-on-demand business model, check out the video below by Greg Gottfried – super helpful!
**EMBED GREG VIDEO
This post has walked through the basics of building a target audience, creating an enticing offer and setting up a profitable lead magnet campaign with Facebook ads.
I’ve highlighted the importance of testing, retargeting and customization. These aspects can amplify the success of your lead generation efforts with Facebook.
Facebook ads is a powerful platform offering real estate agents expansive opportunities to reach their target demographics and communicate with them in new, engaging ways.
Building and strengthening relationships by offering free or highly perceived value is a strategy that always works well.
Whether you’re new to Facebook ads (or digital marketing in general) or experienced, revisiting new strategies (such as effective landing pages, sales funnels and retargeting methods) is an ongoing requirement to stay relevant and competitive in this day and age.
Facebook ads provides realtors (and businesses of any industry) unprecedented access to reach your exact target customer with a fully customized message, offer and ad creative.
And utilizing these tools we have at hand does not have to break the bank.
By implementing an effective lead magnet strategy with Facebook ads, we are able to build trust and authority while capturing a prospect’s contact information (i.e., their email).
From here, retargeting can be carried out using free methods (through email correspondence or over-the-phone communication) and more advanced Facebook ad retargeting.
That’s all I’ve got for your today!
Let me know in the comments if you’ve tried Facebook ads before! If not, what’s holding you back?