Your ad campaign just finished running, and it didn’t drive any qualified leads. Feeling like it totally bombed? Ready to swear off digital ads for all eternity? Think again.
While of course lead generation is key to sales, having a strong brand is the recipe for long-term prosperity and a stream of leads down the line. It’s just how branding works.
There’s actually a proven psychological phenomenon — the Mere Exposure Effect — that shows that people tend to develop a preference to things they’ve seen before over things they haven’t, simply because of superficial familiarity.
Look at Nike. The company has such strong branding that when you need to buy sneakers, your mind goes right to it. You don’t watch Air Jordan ads all day, but the company’s exposed its products and brand enough over the years for its draw to be subconscious.
The same principle applies to real estate agents. While you may not be Nike-level after Year 1, if you prime your customers in due time, they will think of you when the time is right.
But what if I don’t have many transactions to promote?
You don’t have to just yet. The main point of brand awareness is exposure: Putting your face out there so more prospects see you’re a knowledgeable real estate agent in their market. While later on you should be creating an ad for every single sale and listing you have, for now focus on creating content to which prospective clients can relate, be it Search Engine Optimization tips, neighborhood guides or anything else you can think of.
With that in mind, here are a couple of ways to increase brand awareness:
1. Google My Business
It’s no secret that Google runs the world. Indeed, the site processes 40,000 searches every second, and as such has become a homebase for starting the real estate search — with the number of searches for local real agents skyrocketing over the past few years. So a presence there is vital. Google’s new Business profile feature lets you cover the right half of the screen — under certain search terms — with your photo, address, phone number, website and reviews, all of which are essential.
Having a Facebook page is a no-brainer. Ninety-seven percent of agents use it, and the average person checks his/her newsfeed 14 times a day. But not posting regularly is a common real estate agent pitfall. You should be posting ads, creating videos, offering giveaways, going live, creating polls and doing whatever you can to increase engagement. You don’t have to do it every day, but try to be active at least weekly.
Create an Instagram account. It’s the fastest-growing social media platform on the planet. This can help you show off recent sales and listings,showcase beautiful spots near homes you’re selling, or give prospects a taste of your personality. Advertising on Instagram is helpful in getting to the increasingly home-focused millennial demographic, too, and its inherently visual model is perfect for ads.
More largely than just Facebook, you should be creating content and ads and establishing credibility whenever and wherever you can. Have a YouTube channel, create a blog, advertise your profile. It’s worth it to give away valuable knowledge with no strings attached. It can be a strenuous process, but it’s worthwhile, even if you outsource it.