How to Get Your Facebook Ads Groove Back
How to Get Your Facebook Ads Groove Back
Written by Kate Rekrut of Joyce, Inc.
Facebook has been a key part of many agents’ lead funnel for years. But lately, you might be finding it harder… and harder… and harder to get your ads approved. And even if you get your ads approved, you might not be thrilled with your results.
So what gives?
As a digital marketer, I manage Facebook campaigns for dozens of clients. I also advise agents and brokers on how to run their own campaigns. Whether you hold the reins or work with an agency, here are the top things you should know about recent shifts in Facebook advertising (and how to get back to loving your results).
Housing ads have special rules on Facebook.
In May 2019, Facebook was hit with a HUD lawsuit for allowing advertisers to use discriminatory targeting. Whether that discrimination was intentional or not doesn’t matter. All housing, employment, and banking ads are now subject to strict rules:
- ZIP code selection is unavailable. Location selection must include all areas within a 15-mile radius of any selected city, address or dropped pin.
- Some detailed targeting options, which may include demographics, behaviors, or interests, are unavailable.
- Excluding any detailed targeting, selections are unavailable.
- You cannot edit Age or Gender.
- Lookalike Audience ad feature is no longer available.
- You cannot use Saved Audiences anymore, so the audiences you’ve created in the past can no longer be accessed.
With limited targeting, your Facebook ads now need to be much more general. This is especially true for listing ads, since location is everything. Instead of, “I just listed this house in your neighborhood!” try “See all of my listings throughout the area.” Here’s why this might improve your results.
- A 15-mile radius is pretty big and encompasses a lot of different neighborhoods – so you’re avoiding the awkwardness of mistakenly implying the house is in their neighborhood or near them.
- How often does a buyer actually buy the first home they see? Sending people to view all of your listings increases the chances of them finding something they like.
- You can still showcase each of your listings in the ad creative. Just make the ad flexible enough that the user has multiple options.
Try different ad types in Ads Manager.
There is a time and a place for boosting your posts. But if you want to harness the full power of Facebook, you should upgrade to using Facebook’s Ads Manager.
Here’s the difference: with a boost, you’re just getting extra visibility on an existing post. Not the worst thing, obviously. But with a true Facebook Ad, you have access to a full suite of ad types, targeting options, A/B testing, reporting, and other capabilities you just don’t get from a boost.
For example, one of the coolest new ad types is a Lead Generation Form. Instead of sending people to your website to fill out a contact form, they can give you their contact info right on the Facebook platform. This removes any friction or barriers from the user giving you their contact info, so your lead generation rate skyrockets.
The Ads Manager interface has a learning curve. There are plenty of resources, such as Facebook’s free Blueprint online training courses. Of course, outsourcing to a proven, successful digital marketing specialist can save you a lot of time, money, and frustration if learning new technology isn’t your thing. (Hint hint: email firstname.lastname@example.org if you’re looking for that kind of help.)
Make it a great end-to-end experience.
Ok, so you’ve gotten your ad approved and it’s starting to drive leads. What now?
If you don’t have your funnel working like a well-oiled machine, your leads are going to dry up and you’ll miss your chance. Have a consistent plan in place to warm up your leads, build a relationship with them, and get them what they need.
Don’t collect a bunch of leads, sit on them for a month, and then reach out to them weeks later. Develop a process where you can get in contact with them right away. People are very quick to forget that they requested information, so don’t give them the chance to forget!
This might sound like a full-time job, but using the right technologies can make it a lot easier. CRMs, email automation, and text messaging make the process smoother and quicker. With a solid process and the proper tools, you can seal the deal with your lead in a timely manner. Your lead will appreciate your quick follow-up and trust you for being professional and put-together.
Facebook Ads can be a huge blessing to agents. Treat the platform with respect – take the time to learn how to do it right. And don’t be afraid to reach out to a professional to get the results you’re looking for. Happy advertising!
About the Author: Kate Rekrut is the Director of Marketing and Product Development at Joyce, Inc. in Pittsburgh, PA. She writes for The Hot Sheet blog for real estate agents.