So you already have a Facebook personal profile, but do you have a Facebook Page for your real estate business? If you don’t, it’s probably because you didn’t know you needed one or maybe you would like to have one but just aren’t sure where to start.
With this post, we thought we would give you the run down on Facebook Pages and let you decide for yourself whether you need one for your business. If you already know you would like to create a Facebook Page but are not sure of the steps, not to worry, we’ve created a Facebook Page How to Guide just for you.
So Why Should Facebook be an Integral Part of Your Online Marketing Strategy?
After interviewing several real estate agents on our show, out of all the different social media platforms available, Facebook seems to be one of the more prominent ways real estate agents are generating new leads for their business. This is no surprise given the insane number of people on Facebook – over 1.4 billion active users! And with more than 900 million people checking their Facebook page daily, this is probably your best bet for investing a good portion of your time and energy. Whether you are just starting to build your online presence or give your existing online marketing efforts a boost, Facebook continues to provide a user-friendly, inexpensive platform for business owners to build an interactive online community with their fans. And if you are only using your personal profile to promote your business, you may be missing out on some important lead generating opportunities. So let’s take a moment and talk about exactly what a Facebook Page is, and how it differs from the personal profile you already have set up.
What Is a Facebook Page and How Is It Different than a Facebook Personal Profile?
Facebook pages are a way for businesses, brands and organizations to share their stories and connect with people in a way that is sometimes not possible on your personal profile. Like profiles, you can customize Pages by publishing stories, hosting events, adding apps and more. A Facebook Page offers users the opportunity to ‘Like’ your page which allows them to receive updates from your business directly in their News Feed. There are tricks and techniques for getting higher exposure in the News Feed of your followers, however we’ll be saving this discussion for a later post so remember to check back with us.
You will need a Facebook Personal Profile to create a Facebook Page since Pages are created and managed directly from here. Think of a Page (or Business Page as we will be referring to it from now on) as simply an extension of your personal profile.
Facebook pages allow you to add business info such as your website, hours of operation, business description and contact information, helping customers discover you and see what your business is all about. These details make it easier to find your real estate business Page on Facebook and with search engines. And if you select the Local Business category when you create your Page, customers can rate your business, write reviews, and also check-in when visiting your office, things that you can’t do with just a personal profile.
What Are Some of the Other Reasons You May Want a Facebook Business Page?
No Limits to Your Reach. Facebook only allows 5,000 friends to be connected with you on your personal profile, whereas with a business Page you can have as many fans or followers that you can attract. If you are just starting your business this may not be a huge deal, but if you are planning to grow, which of course you should be, you may want to keep this in mind for the future. The good news is that it’s never too late to start a Facebook Page and if you do have a lot of friends already connected to your personal profile, you have a built-in database of potential customers that you can ask to come on over and ‘Like’ your business Page.
Facebook Insights is another HUGE reason you might want to start using a Facebook business Page. Facebook Insights allow you to gain valuable knowledge on how your page is performing. For example; you can find out how many views, likes, comments, or shares (engagement) your page or its content received during a specified time period. In addition, you’ll receive important demographic and geographic data such as gender, age, language, and country of your visitors. You can also use your Page Insights to see the time of day and days of the week when people who like your Page are on Facebook. This is pretty cool information that you can use to either tweak the content or timing of your posts to obtain the highest possible engagement with your target audience.
Contests and Facebook Offers are two incredibly important features of Facebook Pages. Facebook allows you to run contests and offers where you can give away free goods or services designed to increase engagement on your Page, attract new customers, and ultimately bring potential clients over to your website. Offering your Facebook audience a chance to win free movie tickets or a gift card prize for simply commenting on one of your posts or for attending an open house after seeing your promotional post online are just some of the ways you could utilize this feature. Offers and contests are a great way to stay engaged with your audience and even attract new customers. According to Facebook guidelines, offers and contests are prohibited on personal profiles.
Custom Tabs are yet another advantage of having a Facebook business Page. Custom Tabs allow you to personalize the tab area that appears just below the cover photo on your business Page. For example, you can promote your latest offer, video, or real estate listings right on your page through a Custom Tab. You can also include tabs that integrate with your other social media platforms just by adding social buttons like Twitter, YouTube, Pinterest and Instagram. These tabs allow your Facebook users to find out what’s happening on your other platforms without ever having to leave your Facebook Page. You can check out our post on How to Add Social Media Tabs to Your Real Estate Business Facebook Page if you are feeling adventurous!
Assigning Admin Roles is probably something you haven’t thought about but is nonetheless a very helpful tool only offered on Facebook Pages. This feature lets you assign roles to other people to help you manage your account such as Advertiser, Editor, Moderator, Analyst, etc. Along with the roles comes certain permissions which limit the users to only certain aspects of your Facebook Page. In addition, Facebook recently launched Facebook Business Manager which Facebook is promoting as a more secure way to manage your Pages and ad accounts. You’ll be able to see who is working on what and what sections they have access to, helping you to keep your business separate from your personal Facebook profile. Business Manager is best suited for those businesses having 3 or more Pages and/or multiple ad accounts.
Freedom to post all things business. How many times have you gotten frustrated when your friends bombard your timeline with their business posts? Trust us, you don’t want to become that person. When people like your real estate business page there is a level of expectation that they will receive updates and news about your real estate business. However with your personal profile it’s a whole different story.
Now don’t get us wrong, your personal profile is a great starting place to drum up new real estate business and turn personal relationships into business ones. In fact, sprinkling real estate business updates in with your personal posts like announcing a new listing or congratulating a new client on their first home purchase lets your friends know you’re still active in your business. However too many business related posts that take up your friends’ entire timeline could have a potentially negative effect thus causing the worst to happen……the dreaded Hide feature could be activated and that’s definitely not good for business!
What about wanting to know more about a business only to find pictures of the owner’s latest escapade out with friends from the night before. This is the very reason business Pages exist. Creating a business page allows you to have a Facebook page that focuses solely on your real estate business without bringing into play what your relatives did on their family vacation.
Facebook Ads…Facebook Ads…Facebook Ads……(Notice the emphasis on Facebook Ads!) Probably the biggest reason to have a Facebook business Page is for the ability to run Facebook Ads. Advertising on Facebook does not have to break the bank. You can promote a featured post or run an ad for as little as $5.00. Creating an ad on Facebook is also surprisingly easy to do. In short, you can create the ad directly from your real estate business Page, include a video or photo to capture your audience’s attention and even add a call to action button that prompts them to complete a task; for example asking them to like your Facebook Page, visit your website or claim an offer. Next, and this is what makes Facebook ads so invaluable, is that you can tell Facebook to deliver your ad based on certain geographic and demographic criteria like age, gender, or city. You can even disseminate your ad based on ‘Like’ and search activity of Facebook members. In addition, based on the engagement you receive from your ads, Facebook gives you the opportunity to re-target future ads towards those individuals showing the most interest in your Facebook content. This type of feedback is something that you won’t get with most other types of advertising allowing you to build a stronger fan base and ultimately a better business.
So….Do You Need a Facebook Page?
A lot of Facebook users (especially real estate agents) commingle their business pages with their personal profiles. If you are one of these people, you may want to consider whether this is the best option. If you are fully committed to marketing your business in every way possible and want to get the most out of what Facebook has to offer its business owners, maybe it’s time you give Pages a try. Hopefully after reading this post, you have a clearer understanding of the use and benefits of Facebook Pages and how they can be used to promote your business in an easy and inexpensive way. But like we said earlier, we’re not here to tell you that you absolutely must have a Facebook page, we just wanted you to have all the latest information. The rest is up to you!
So if you’ve decided that its time to create that Facebook page, make sure to check out our post on How to Setup a Facebook Page for Your Real Estate Business
Do you already have a Facebook Page for your business? Let us know your thoughts on this topic. If you think you have a Facebook Page that really stands out from the rest send us your Facebook Link. We would love to see some examples of how you’re using your Facebook pages to promote your real estate business.
~Greg & Tracy