If you’re looking for ways to improve your marketing strategy to reach more buyers in the right places, there’s one HUGE aspect you cannot ignore: Social Media. In today’s digitally connected world, even if you’re still skeptical about whether social media can work for your business, it’s time to change your mindset.
Why is social media so important?
Along with your website, social media is your digital store front. Whether you like it or not, our society and culture are shifting dramatically to a more open and service-oriented environment. No matter how unfamiliar or intimidating social media may be to you, it’s not going away. Our advice? Just go with it. If you execute social media correctly with the right strategies, it will help you increase brand awareness, build online credibility, grow traffic to your website, and provide valuable word of mouth referrals.
What social media channels should you use?
If you’re just starting out, try focusing on one social platform. That way, you can truly give it the attention it needs to be successful, and prevent spreading yourself too thin across multiple channels. If you try to tackle all channels at once with limited resources and time, then your results will inevitably be mediocre
If you need a social channel to start with, go with Facebook. With 3 out of 4 Americans on the platform, the audience is certainly there to reach. It also has the most advanced ad platform out there, so you have the best opportunity to whittle down this large following in order to target your exact buyer demographic, and serve ads directly to their newsfeed. One of these ads should be Lead Generation, which allows you to target your audience and collect leads directly within the platform.
However, in order to truly maximize your marketing strategy, your long-term goal should be to have a larger social media presence across all the channels. This involves platforms like Twitter, for quick, real-time communication; Houzz and Pinterest, for showcasing recent projects and design ideas; and Instagram for presenting the quality of your work through high-end, professional photography. With each of these platforms, the goal is to encourage traffic to your website, and ultimately to get potential buyers to contact you. This is why the more places you can be found, and the more education you provide buyers about your product and process, the more successful your strategy will be.
This management isn’t easy on your own, so consulting a professional who has knowledge and experience of this type of marketing can help you optimize your pages, show you the right content to post, and set up targeted ads that deliver to the right audience.
What content should you post?
Just because you’re posting regularly doesn’t mean you have a good social media presence. The content you’re sharing is a visual representation of your business. When you post anything, make sure it looks great and reads well. This means photos that aren’t blurry or off-center, copy that is clear and enticing, and links that go to the appropriate landing pages.
The goal of your content is to market your company by showing how you’re different from other builders in your market. But think of your content like a first date. If you only talk about yourself, you’re probably not going to get a second date – or get users to keep coming back. Follow the 80/20 rule: be a resource to people 80% of the time and showcase your business the other 20%. Consumers want to know what’s in it for them, so make sure that’s loud and clear.
Before and After photos, as well as Happy Homeowners and Testimonials, are great posts to showcase your business. And tips about home design, the building process, new home advancements, and product offerings help buyers see you as the experts in your field. Put yourself in their shoes and create a plan based on what they would want to see.
Bonus Tip: Use a specific hashtag to represent the subject of the content in order to help it get found by anyone searching for that specific feature, product or service. This is a great way to expand your audience beyond your actual followers.
What about Facebook advertising?
With so many advancements in social media advertising, and paid outreach at the lowest cost it’s ever been, builders have more affordable opportunities than ever to reach prospective buyers. These ads can be set up to target your exact buyer demographic, so that all those people you’re reaching and adding to your sales funnel are quality leads.
Lead Generation ads make it possible for you to capture user contact information right within the platform. With the right message and graphic, you can potentially capture 3-5 leads for only $10 a day.
With the rise of Millennial and Generation X’s buying power, the practice of producing content uniquely for your social media channels is more important than ever. You can sponsor or “boost” posts, which means paying to have them inserted and prioritized in a specific user’s newsfeeds. They’re available at a very low cost, and are invaluable for capitalizing on the short attention spans of these buyers on such an eventful platform.
Additionally, Facebook Live, a free feature, essentially allows your Facebook page to become its own TV channel, and all your followers get notified when you’re recording. This strategy is effective because people are attracted to the rawness and authenticity of a live video. No matter how amateur your video skills, this is exactly the type of personal approach that brings you closer to your audience – and potential buyers. Use this feature to give tips, broadcast during open houses and community events, or show progress on current builds. There’s a lot of opportunity here.
How do I measure my social media success?
If you’ve committed to social media advertising, you need a benchmark to be sure what you’re doing is working. By doing so, you can figure out how to keep improving on a successful strategy, or determine what you need to do differently with an unsuccessful one.
Setting up Google Analytics to connect and track your website activity will help you directly measure what site traffic is being driven directly from your platforms. Social media should be in your top 10 pages for source of traffic, so you need to be looking at these channels to figure out what’s most effective. You can also look at Facebook Insights on your business page to track exact engagement, such as likes, comments, click-throughs and new followers.
So what are the key takeaways?
Social media is continuing to evolve. It does work, and we highly recommend investing in it to grow your leads and sales.
Consult a professional to figure out the best means of implementing and managing it effectively.
If you’re looking to invest your time and money into these strategies, start with new concepts like Lead Generation ads and boosted posts.
Try some of the newer features like Facebook Live; have an idea and a plan to promote and share it. People are flocking to these features, so take advantage of what’s out there.
For more information on getting started, or a FREE social media report card of your current strategy, contact Andy Bergren or any of the experts at Group Two!
By Andy Bergren
Senior Account Manager