Now we’re getting down to the nitty-gritty.
You’ve built solid foundations in Facebook. You know exactly who you’re targeting and you’ve set up your Facebook page, so you look like a pro.
You also know how often to post, what to post and how to save time creating content. And you’ve also seen some great examples of real estate agents who are using Facebook well.
Now we’re going to get into the details of how to use Facebook to generate more business.
Because looking good and posting regularly is only part of the picture. That’s kind of like having a great shop front, with a window display that’s updated regularly.
These things attract people who pass by. But we want to do more than that.
People who pass by our shopfront are only a small portion of the people we could connect with.
Now we need to do the online equivalent of in-person networking or delivering brochures or advertising.
Here’s how to do that.
Hang Out with Your Customers
Think about where your potential customers hang out in Facebook. Is it in local retail outlets or local cafes?
If you’re targeting high-end customers, they might also interact with other high-end businesses. Think luxury car dealers, bespoke jewellers or fashion boutiques.
Now look for these sorts of businesses on Facebook.
When you find the business pages, do a quick check. We want them to have at least a couple of hundred followers and be posting regularly (i.e. at least twice a week).
If they have regular audience interaction (fans who comment and interact with their posts), that’s even better.
Make a list of these pages and start visiting them every week and commenting as your page. That’s right, you’re going to become one of the fans of these pages.
Now, it’s a little tricky working out how to do this. First, you need to be an administrator, editor or moderator of the page.
You also need to be on a desktop or logged into facebook.com on your mobile device. You can’t do this using the apps.
Facebook will default to you commenting as your personal profile, but you can click your profile image under the post and select the page you want to comment as.
Once you’ve done that, you’ll notice the profile image changes to the one on your page.
See how the image below now shows the Pixilink logo, and we’re commenting as our page?
Tweak the Algorithm
Yes, you can tweak the algorithm!
When you post to your page, comment and like the post. The algorithm then thinks, “This post just went live, and someone already likes it – it must be popular. Let’s share it more widely!”
You can comment and like as your page, or as your personal profile. It doesn’t matter.
Some businesses say things like, “We forgot to mention …” to give them an excuse to comment.
Some businesses use this in a rather spammy way by commenting on each post with their URL, which isn’t recommended. Facebook is looking for qualitative posts that give value to people, so try to add value to your post.
You can also form a “power posse” with other businesses where you comment and like each other’s posts.
Boost the Best
Sometimes Facebook recommends you boost a post, because it’s popular.
Boosting a post means paying money to increase the number of people who will see the post. This is useful, but you need to think strategically.
Facebook is interested in increasing revenue, they’re not there to give you strategic marketing advice.
So, if you’re thinking of boosting a post make sure it’s going to be a useful post for you. Think about how it will help you achieve your marketing or business goals.
Respond to everything
Social media is about being social to be sure to interact with your audience!
That means tagging other businesses and responding to any comments on your post. You might want to tag a lawyer who helped with a sale, for example.
Don’t forget to like everything, ask questions in comments, and thank people when it’s appropriate.
If you post the image of a property you’ve sold, you might tag the buyers or other businesses involved in the sale. You don’t need to go crazy, but you could tag the photographer, the professional staging company or the mortgage broker.
Tagging people in this way extends your reach. It’s like networking online!
Invite the Likes
You can invite people to like your page, without having to pay for advertising.
Facebook is now encouraging pages to do this, so you may receive notifications on some posts.
Here’s how to do this.
When people react to a post, by using the thumbs up, the heart or other reactions symbols you can see who’s reacted to your to the post.
Underneath each post, you’ll get a note like this one that says “Jacob Boshoff and Simi Girn” reacted to the post. Just click on the link in the names.
This pops up a list of the people who’ve reacted to the post, and you’ll see the option of inviting them to like your page.
In the screenshot below you’ll see we’ve invited one person to like the page, so the button is greyed out. But we can click on the “Invite” button next to Simi to invite her to like our page.
You can also invite anyone who’s your friend on Facebook to like your page, using the “Invite Friends” button on your page.
Rather than inviting every one of your friends, use this strategically by inviting current business partners, people who are likely to become prospects, or people interested in real estate.
Check Out Great Groups
Search for groups you can join. Try searching for your area, like “Vancouver” or search for a topic and then select ‘groups’ at the top, so you only see groups that match this criterion.
Here’s what it looks like when we search for Vancouver groups.
Scroll down through the list and click on any that interest you. It’s a good idea to check out the description or rules for each group to ensure they’re a good fit for you.
This one called “Vancouver Rentals and Roommates” says it’s a place to find real estate, homes for sale and properties to rent.
A good place for a real estate agent to socialise, no?
Get More Business
Now you know a lot of strategies for generating business using Facebook.
This stuff isn’t hard. It just takes a little time.
And it pays off. Businesses who use these techniques bring in regular business from Facebook.
They can even bring in business without advertising at all. All it takes is a little consistency and commitment.
So, set aside half an hour a week, or a few minutes every day, to interact with other businesses, boost a post and respond to comments.
Before you know it, you’ll have regular leads and people will be seeking you out. You’ll look like a true professional thanks to your online profile, posts and interactions.
People will feel they know and like you before they even meet you in person. So, it will be easier to convert leads to customers.
What are you waiting for? Grab your action plan and get going. 😊
Your Action Plan:
- Make a list of businesses where you customers hang out, and interact with them as your page, once a week
- Tweak the algorithm by commenting and liking your own posts, particularly the ones you want to reach more people
- Boost the best posts once or twice each month
- Respond to all comments and questions on your page
- Invite people to like your page