Back in March, Facebook announced changes to their current algorithm that will alter who’s content you see on your feed and who sees your content. This change aims to create a more personalized and more private social setting for you. It will recognize your “inner circle’ or those that you interact with most frequently and expose users to less content created outside of that sphere. Facebook will also start placing an emphasis on groups that users belong to, putting that content as the main focus of your feed. This algorithm is not new, just updated to allow better results and get back to the social site that Facebook once was, before advertising and mass marketing became popular.
So, how does this affect you? When it comes to advertising, the effectiveness of mass marketing will decrease. However, agents who do target marketing to groups that have a tie-in with the listing or message will do well. All in all, with this change to Facebook’s algorithm, it is imperative that you become more strategic with your advertising goals rather than casting a wide net. Additionally, this change prompts you to become more involved in groups and engage with your local community. The more active you are with various real estate and community-centered groups, the more people your content will be put in front of.
Here are four strategies that REALTOR® Magazine* offers to help you stay ahead of these algorithm changes:
“Make proper use of other photo-driven platforms. Instagram and Pinterest, for example, are strong mediums for showcasing photography, which is the most critical component of your marketing. Focus on presenting listing photos and short stories about your properties on these platforms while using Facebook more for making authentic connections in groups. “If you have great photos and a knack for storytelling, [Instagram is] a platform that’s made for you,” Listanski says.
Share more video content. Facebook favors serving video content—especially Facebook Live—to its users. If your videos are compelling and informative, you’ll likely end up in more of your followers’ feeds. Betti Russo, ABR, managing broker at Realty Executives Exceptional, REALTORS®, in Oakland, N.J., began a weekly Facebook video series in January focusing on topics such as FSBOs and vacation homes. In that time, her video views have grown from only a handful to about 1,100 per video. Though she also shares her videos on Instagram, YouTube, LinkedIn, Pinterest, and Twitter, “most of my traffic comes from Facebook,” Russo says. “What’s important is to be consistent. Have a plan and a schedule, and it becomes like brushing your teeth every day.”
Join a variety of Facebook groups. In addition to real estate groups, get involved in online communities centered on other topics that are relevant to you. This will give you an opportunity to be more authentic in your interactions—instead of selling yourself as a real estate pro—which is the purpose of social media anyway, says Katie Lance, a social media consultant focusing on real estate. “Join a local group on parenting or photography—nothing to do with real estate—and connect with people over things that are personal,” Lance says. “Remember that social media is a marathon and not a sprint.”
Provide extra value to make your posts more shareable. Even if your organic reach decreases, those who do see your posts will be more likely to share them with others if they offer educational takeaways for the audience. “Real estate professionals need to think beyond the marketing copy they have posted on the MLS or on their flyer and think more like a storyteller,” Lance says. For example, instead of posting a simple announcement about a new listing, offer some information about your client’s journey to get the home prepared for market, along with some practical tips for sellers. Your followers are more likely to share such a post with friends and family who may be preparing for a move.”
*Freed, Stacey. “Beat Facebook at Its Own Algorithm Game.” REALTOR® Magazine, July 2019, magazine.realtor/technology/feature/article/2019/06/beat-facebook-at-its-own-algorithm-game.