One of the most common questions I get asked by agents is how to get real estate leads from Facebook.
Let me be the first to say, there is no magic bullet.
All marketing is about having a clear strategy and then executing it consistently, testing and refining along the way until you find exactly what to offer your target audience that will produce the best results.
With that said, Facebook offers some of the most powerful online marketing capabilities available.
Your ability to build awareness with tens, or hundreds, of thousands of homeowners has never been easier.
And unlike the old school real estate trainers who still preach “dialing for dollars”, you can use Facebook to automate your lead generation by creating sales funnel, freeing time for you to focus on other areas of your business – or your life!
In this article, I will explain how to get real estate leads by creating a simple Facebook ad funnel.
Let’s start by exploring how sales funnels work.
How sales funnels work
Most real estate agents are taught how to sell.
Agents are taught to get on the phone and look for a homeowner who wants to list their home today.
The likelihood of finding that needle in the haystack is rare, and one reason why many agents who subscribe to this technique are always riding the income roller coaster.
Every homeowner has their own agenda and timeframe.
To become an effective marketer, however, you must learn how people buy and how to provide the right information at the right time.
When you know how people buy, and how to influence their buying decision, you can create sales funnels that address every stage of their buying, or hiring, decision.
In it’s simplest form, there are three parts to the buyers’ decision-making process, as shown below;
In the first stage of the decision-making process, or the top of the funnel, the homeowner becomes aware of you – or they become aware of their need for an agent’s services.
Your opportunity to move these homeowners through to the next stage of your funnel will depend on their need, whether immediate or future, for a real estate agent’s services.
Just because they are now aware of you doesn’t mean they need your services – yet.
If the homeowner does have a need for the services of a real estate agent, they move to the next stage of the funnel – consideration.
At this point they are gathering the information they will use to determine who they should call.
What the homeowner is looking for at this stage is how you are able to help them achieve their goals.
Some of the factors they’ll consider are your reputation, track record, testimonials and experience.
The middle part of your funnel should focus on providing homeowners with the information they need to see how the process works and why you are the best agent to help them navigate the process successfully.
Once the homeowner is convinced that you are the best qualified agent to help them, they enter the last stage of the funnel, conversion.
At the bottom of the funnel, your ads should be designed to get the homeowner to take action – to either call or email you to schedule an appointment.
This sales process is so well accepted that Facebook developed their ad manager to reflect these objectives, as shown below;
Start with building awareness
Let’s assume you are starting from scratch and have a limited number of fans on your Facebook page.
Your goal is to build awareness among homeowners in your market.
But posting your listings and open houses isn’t going to cut it.
You have to start a real estate blog.
If you don’t have a WordPress website with a blog, I encourage you to get one yesterday.
The website your company provides, in all likelihood, is limited to your profile, contact information and your listings, but not a blog. Even if it provides a blog, you will need to be able to install the Facebook pixel on your site and link that pixel to your own ad account, not the brokerage firm’s account.
To begin building awareness, I suggest that you create a blog content calendar and write one blog post per week.
Make these posts informative. Use them to educate your target audience.
Ask your friends what topics are of interest to them.
The quality of these posts will determine the first impression you make with your target audience.
Once you complete the blog article, you will post it to your Facebook business page.
Wait a day or two and once you begin to see people engaging with your post, use the Ads Manager to promote your post to your target audience, following the steps in the video below;
(To see the detail, click the enlarge button to view the video in full screen mode)
Move prospects towards consideration
As you continue to post your blog articles and drive traffic to your website, you will be building your Facebook custom audiences.
The people who make up these audiences are now familiar with you and, by virtue of having visited your website, may be interested in selling their home.
Your goal is to retarget them with ads for additional content that will help them understand the selling process and presents your track record, testimonials and proven approach to selling homes.
Video ads work extremely well for these ads as it provides the homeowner with an opportunity to see you, building a connection.
I’ve written about using video for Facebook ads before if you want to learn more about how to use them.
In your video, you should ask an attention-grabbing question with an obvious “yes” answer and then quickly introduce yourself and state your value proposition and offer.
For example, you might say, “Have you ever wondered how you can sell your home for the highest possible price? Hi, I’m Jane Austin with ABC Realty, I help homeowners in Shady Grove achieve market beating results when selling their home.” If you’ve wondered how to get the most for your home, I’ve put together a free Seller’s Survival Guide that will help you understand how to make your home stand out so that it commands the highest possible price. To get your copy, simply click the link below this video.”
That video shouldn’t take more than about 30 seconds, beginning to end.
To see how we set up the retargeting ad, watch the video below;
Be sure to create a custom audience that tracks visitors to the “thank you” page of your landing page.
The reason you track the visitors to the URL of your “thank you” page is that only those people who opted-in for your offer would see the “thank you” page.
This would identify them as having downloaded the presentation and position them for the next stage in the funnel.
Additionally, you can create a custom audience of people who have watched your video.
Facebook allows you to create custom audiences based on the number of seconds the video was watched and use that information to retarget those people with additional ads.
Provide opportunities for conversion
The last stage of your funnel is designed to convert leads from people who have visited your landing page and downloaded your presentation and encourage them to take the next step, an in-person appointment.
If your presentation is well-designed, it should answer the majority of questions any homeowner would have about,
- Your approach to selling homes
- Your track record of results compared to the market averages
- Your testimonials
- Any guarantees or special services you offer
At this point, you need to make an offer that encourages the homeowner to contact you.
One example would be to offer a no-obligation assessment of their home.
You’ll offer to identify any repairs that would help their home stand out from the competition, suggest ideas for staging their home and more.
You will use the same process to create your next ad as you did in the previous video, targeting the custom audience created from visitors to your “thank you” page.
If you are fortunate to get hundreds, or thousands, of visitors to read your blog post, your custom audience size may be adequate to run a successful retargeting campaign.
If your custom audience sizes are too small, your ads may not run.
You can potentially overcome this by changing your custom audience from people who visited a specific web site ( the URL of your recent blog post ) to all visitors to your website.
This will aggregate all of the traffic to your website and can provide a more robust target audience.
Furthermore, you can use the custom audience feature to target people who interact with your Facebook business page as well.
Until you build a larger following, and see more traffic to your website, it makes sense to combine all custom audiences to reach as many people as possible.
If you find that your custom audience size of people who opt-in for your free guide is too small to run an ad, I would encourage you to set up an automated email campaign that makes the same offer you would have made using Facebook.
As you post a new article to your blog each week, and promote it using Facebook, your traffic will steadily grow.
You will see a consistent flow of traffic to your website, and your retargeting campaign will automatically begin to move those people through your funnel, providing a steady stream of well-qualified leads.