Social media marketing (the right way) for Home Builders
Social media is an incredible way to create conversations about your brand. Big companies use it all the time, as a marketing medium for small businesses. What is the point of creating conversations? If anything, you probably need less conversation and more sales.
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That doesn’t mean that social media doesn’t work for small businesses, it just means that you need to use it in the correct way.
Adding content to your social media profiles
Content is very important in social media marketing. … If headlines are important to catch the readers attention, contents are important too because it is the one who tells if what is the headline is all about. It is the soul of any social media marketing or any article.
Getting fans and followers to your social media profiles
As a small business you don’t really want to pay Facebook to feature your business in front of your target demographic. Google Pay Per Click (PPC) is way more efficient at reaching your target market, so any money that you are going to spend on buying ads should be spent on search, not social media.
So how do you get the fans and followers?
The reason why social media works so well for certain businesses is due to brand advocates – people who rave and rant about you and your business to anyone that would listen (in a positive way of course). These are the kinds of followers you need on your social profiles.
- It increases the activity in your social media account, which keeps search engines interested.
- It provides more social proof for your business. By solving problems quickly, and in the open, you are showing potential customers how easy it is to get customer support.
- Every time someone posts on your social media account, all of their friends and followers see it too. Yes sir, that is called a free brand awareness campaign.
Imagine all your customer service questions come in through a free platform that promotes your brand in the process? Isn’t that the best kind of social media utilization you can think of?
So which social media account is best for home builders?
Since Facebook is the most popular platform with over 167 million users in the US and Canada alone, I think that would be your best bet. Especially since older Canadians are really getting the hang of it, whereas the younger generation utilize Twitter.
Facebook also allows you to promote certain posts to your followers if you wanted to run a special event or an opening of a building project. You should still be running Twitter and Google+ accounts for the SEO value they give your website.
Eventually, when you become an enormous company, due to these marketing tactics, you can invest more heavily in other social media platforms.
YouTube your way to the top
By now you will be sitting pretty. You are generating tons of organic traffic to your website, positioning yourself as an expert, and you are utilizing social media in the right way.
Now things will get really interesting. By utilizing YouTube properly, you will be able to add another layer of social proof to your website by generating a ton of traffic. Home builders never use YouTube to its full potential, so you will really get one up on your competitors.
The only problem with video marketing is that it is expensive to maintain. Getting a high quality video shot isn’t as cheap as some of the other content creation methods. Posting videos about your company from an iPhone isn’t going to do you any favors (you know who you are).
So what kind of videos are we talking about?
Ideally, you want the kind of videos which shows off how much your customers love your company. Below are a couple of my clients, RES Contracting, and Easy Living Homes. They absolutely nailed their videos.
We would suggest finding a local freelancer to shoot and cut the video for you. Craig’s List is always a winner when it comes to stuff like this.
Promoting your video on YouTube to get to the top of Google
That’s right, you can get your video to the top of Google for almost any keyword. In fact, it is 52 times easier to rank a video than a web page. You should be targeting those really competitive ones with at least more than 500 searches per month. Here are a couple of examples.
- New homes Toronto
- Toronto home builders
- Home builders Toronto
These are just a couple of examples. By doing a proper keyword analysis you will be able to find more than 100 relevant keywords people search for.
Now that you have your video and your keyword, what’s next?
When you upload the video to YouTube, you should embed it in the blog post you just posted. This will tell Google what the video is about. Especially if the two articles are relevant to one another.
Next, head over to Microworkers.com and get Canadian users to write 100 comments on your YouTube video. You should create a second micro project and ask over 300 workers to share the video on Twitter and Google+. The third micro project will be to ‘like’ the YouTube video – and you should get about 500-1,000 ‘likes’.
Once you have created all the projects, you should submit the video to Virool.com and blast it with Canadian based YouTube views. How many views really depends on how competitive the keyword is, but the more you spend on views, the higher the odds of your video reaching the top of Google. You would need at least 10,000 views.
Lastly, head over to pennybacklinks.com and get 1,000 low quality links built to your video.
Not only will your company get tons of exposure from doing the promotion, but the continuous traffic from Google will be incredibly beneficial. The more videos you do, the more traffic you will get. It also has the added bonus of increasing the conversation rate of your website.
If you want a guaranteed top spot in Google you should read this article: How to get 100,000 views to your YouTube video.
Paid ads that gets you the right customers
There are tons of ways you can use paid ads to get traffic to your website, but you need to focus all of your attention on the ones that generate the highest ROI. Luckily for you, I have already done the research for you.
I know everyone rants and raves on about Facebook and Twitter ads, but in the end, search engines win out, and here’s why.
Social networks are just that: social. If you were sitting in a bar, chatting to your friends, and someone shoves a flyer in your face about a new home development, you will take one look at it and be pissed off – even if you were interested in buying a new home. It is not the time or the place.
Search engines are different. If you were actively searching for a new home, and you come across a flyer with information about new homes for sale, you are way more likely to take action.
Paid search includes Bing Ads and Google Adwords. When you take into account all the moving parts of these ad platforms, it can get very complicated, very quickly. So think about hiring an external company to handle your PPC campaigns. You will save a ton of money and time in the long run.
Retargeting is an awesome form of advertising, because your ads are only displayed to people who visited your website. So if someone visits your site, they will see ads for your website all over the internet for 30 days. It might sounds annoying, but it has an incredible ROI.
You can use the Double Click network, or Positionly, but make sure you rotate your ads every week. People get tired of seeing the same old stuff and your ROI will drop.
Location based marketing
As with all areas of online marketing, location based has tons of things to consider. But you know me, I like focusing on the one thing that gives you the highest ROI, and that is Google+ Local.
By doing this right, you will be showing up on people’s maps if they search for business within a specific area. You are also very likely to be featured in the top of the search listings if you physical location matches the zip code of the ‘searcher’.
So how do you implement location based marketing?
It is pretty simple actually. Just add your business and the address to Google + Local. Since you have already set up your social media accounts (remember strategy #4?) you just have to go to www.google.com/local/add and follow the steps.
So what are the big guys spending their money on?
As you can see, according to CMA, the large ‘corps’ are spending 15% of their budget on ‘internet/web’. If you include social media in that statistic you will be looking at 24%.
Another interesting stat is that 76% of construction companies will be increasing their marketing budgets in 2017. So who do you think is going to grab the bulk of the pent up demand? You, or them?
If you are a local home builder and you implement the following online marketing tactics you can compete with these guys on a level playing field. That means getting more customers, becoming an industry thought leader, getting attention from the local media, having your pick of investors etc.
So let’s dive in and I will explain exactly how you can achieve all of this, and more, in these 11 marketing tactics.
Get Google’s Attention by Blogging
It is no secret that I believe blogging is one of the best ways to get Google’s attention and there is plenty of good reason for that.
According to HubSpot, active blogs draw 6.9 times more organic search traffic and double the amount of referral traffic. Check out the results of their study below.
Why does Google reward me for writing blog posts?
Google has changed a lot since it came to us (with a bang) over a decade ago, but one thing remains the same. Google indexes pages and tries to connect the most relevant pages to search queries people type in. The more pages you have, the more chance you have of someone coming across your website.
So blogging has been driving traffic to websites for years, but there has been some recent fundamental changes in the way Google operates which give high quality, freshly updated, smoothly shaven (kidding), blogs more authority in the search results.
Google now looks at quality and quantity more than ever. Spam websites are getting punished and this has opened up an opportunity for legitimate businesses. So blogging has a higher ROI than it used to, because tons of spam websites aren’t competing with you anymore.
It is pretty obvious how more traffic from search engines will help you to acquire customers. However, all sorts of interesting people who are in the home building industry will also come across your website. That includes investors, reporters, politicians, procurement departments, consultants, lawyers, and your competitors.
Position yourself as an expert
Blogging does a lot more than encourage a ‘Google love fest’ on your website. It also positions you as an expert within your industry. By writing highly effective blog posts, all those people who are now coming to your website will believe that you really know what you are talking about.
“Being an expert fosters trust and respect”
Don’t you hate coming across those customers that just don’t respect you, or what you do? Well, that drastically reduces when you are constantly blogging and become an authority in your space. Imagine people calling you up and asking you to help out on their building project? You have just landed your first consulting job, thank you very much sir!
If you build tract homes and need investors, wouldn’t it be great to show off how much other people think of your knowledge? Wouldn’t it be incredible if they contact you, because you have written an outstanding article on something they are interested in? Blogging is an excellent way to prove that you are the real deal.
What do home builders blog about?
So we’re guessing that you are convinced that blogging is worth it (because it is), but what on earth should you blog about?
By using the Google keyword tool, you should be able to make a list of what keywords to write about, but it isn’t as effective as you might think. The best thing to do is find out what your target audience are really looking for. You have to blog for people, not for Google.
Let us give you a breakdown
Tract Home Builder
If you build communities of homes, then you should blog for three audiences.
- Investors – e.g. how to find the best lots for homes
- Builders and contractors – e.g. what materials work best for modern framing
- New home buyers – e.g. how to save $40,000 on your new home mortgage
For help coming up with a great, and specific title, you should read this article by Neil Patel: A Simple Plan for Writing a Powerful Blog Post in Less Than 2 Hours
Custom Home Builder
If you usually take on one project at a time then you should focus on your ideal customer. This would probably be older, upper middle class, people.
- Blog about how you can use your self-directed IRA to get a tax break on building your new home.
- What to look for when they choose their custom home builder.
- What ROI a custom home can give them.
- How to leave their assets, like their home, to loved ones tax free.
The possibilities are really endless.
Make a list of interesting blogs to get ideas
Try to write about 4-8 blog posts each month. The more frequently you post, the more traffic you will get. The most important thing is to stick with it. It can take a long time for your blog to become popular, but if you combine blogging with content marketing, then you will be able to rise to the top even faster.
Spread your expertise around the web with content marketing
Now that you have a blog which is spitting out fresh and juicy content for Google and your target audience, it is time to leverage the hell out of it.
There are several ways in which you can spread your content around the web, but we are going to clump them together into one: Paid advertising.
Paid content marketing method
You have to make sure that your content is of a really good quality. If it isn’t, then you will be wasting your money, because the traffic will just bounce right off your website. You want people to stick around. The more they stick around the more likely they are to share their content on their social media accounts, especially Twitter and Google+.
Reaching out to influencers is still your best bet in the long run, but they may not look favorably on your blog if you don’t have any comments or social shares.
We would recommend using a combination of paid and free content marketing tactics, because then you get instant traffic as well as building long term relationships with some incredible bloggers.
If you really want to rock at content marketing then read this advanced guide by Brian Lang: Content Marketing Guide: How Top Companies Generate 1000’s of Visitors Each Month
Use 3 Simple Lead Generation Techniques
Blogging and content marketing will take care of the traffic for now. Before pursuing any other traffic generation strategies, you should optimize your website to capture leads.
The golden rule, when it comes to lead generation, is that not everyone is ready to buy your product or inquire about your services when they land on your website. But that doesn’t mean that they never will be. The problem is that once they are ready to contact you, they may have forgotten how they found you in the first place.
So it is very important to give your visitors something for free in exchange for their contact information. This will allow you to build up your email list which fits nicely into your blogging and content marketing strategies mentioned above.
Here are three lead generation techniques and what to do with those leads.
What to do with your new found content
Now you should create a sign up form on your blog sidebar, or a popup, which asks for a visitors email address and nothing more. The less you ask for, the more leads you’ll get.
Every time you write a new blog post you should email it to your list of prospects and ask them for their feedback. This will help to improve your content marketing and will firmly position you as an expert.
Now that you have your lead, that person will be constantly reminded about you and your company. When they are ready to buy a new home then YOU are the person they are going to contact. Better than that, if one of their friends wants to buy a new home, YOU will be the person they refer them to.
This achieves a number of things:
The whole purpose of getting someone’s email address (by offering the eBook) is because they may not be ready to engage in a serious conversation about your product. The reason for emailing them your blog posts is to keep your company in the forefront of their thinking when it comes to homes. The reason for the email series is to push those who are ready, over the fence and into your arms.
Luckily for you, your blogging has already done most of the work for you. You have the traffic and you have the credibility. Now you just need to let people know that you are accepting investors.
You should create a landing page specifically for investors, and leave subtle links around your website to drive traffic to that page. You will be surprised about how many private individuals have tons of money lying around in their IRAs.
The landing page needs to show them facts and figures on what they can expect by investing in your building projects. Then give them a simple form to fill out so that you can get in contact.
You can do this with any secondary target audience, but you have to do it right. Otherwise your website will lose focus and the conversion rate will drop.