Imagine you have an exploratory meeting with a young married couple who is looking to build their first house. Your home construction services were strongly recommended by one of your customers who just posted a 3D perspective of their future home on Facebook. After a bit of research, this young couple has decided to meet with you for a preliminary draft. This scenario can become quite common if you learn to master the art of marketing via social media.
The content you produce and share on social media creates interactions between potential buyers and is a powerful way for a brand to gain visibility as well as establish close communication with current and future customers. In short, marketing on social media can create generations of loyal customers.
Each social network has its own characteristics, but the process is always the same:
- Receiving brand mentions around a positive experience
- Collecting “likes,” followers, pins, recommendations, and positive opinions
- Encouraging dialogue between your “influencer” customers and your followers
- Encouraging your employees or anyone who could be your brand ambassador to get involved in expanding your community
#1 It develops your brand awareness
By sharing content that highlights your brand name and performance, you expose your brand to a powerful panel of potential customers. Your content, if it sparks interest and is well-targeted, will be followed and shared by your community: your content will be transmitted virally.
Remember that in 2017, 59% of French people were connected to a social network. Your future customers are likely to be part of that network.
If you can create appropriate and targeted content for your future buyers, you have the makings of a viral campaign on social media. Create content regularly, and post it to ensure that the people following you as well as those you have identified as influencers share it.
Your ultimate objective: that their circles of influence are exposed regularly to your brand in order to optimize your brand awareness. When their followers are ready to contact a home builder, they’ll think of you.
Note that not all content is suitable for social media! Think in advance about which social networks your customers are on and what types of content they expect to see on these networks. Then evaluate the type of content that you can produce and for each one, establish rules regarding the frequency of publication, tone, vocabulary, key words to highlight, etc. You are now on the verge of establishing your marketing strategy on social media.
#2 It reassures future buyers
Social media is based on the Theory of Social Proof. This is a theory which states that people generally look to others for guidance, especially when they’re faced with uncertainty or unknowns. If word of mouth can influence small purchases, it can be very powerful for large investments, such as the purchase of a house.
Many young buyers who are active on social media have very little or even no experience with buying a house. Any information found on the internet can play a role in their decision-making. Customers complaining on social networks or questions left with no response are all turn offs. Conversely, a home builder who is active on their business page, who shares their designs and responds quickly to comments makes future buyers feel comfortable. They will be more likely to call on you for an exploratory meeting, as their first interaction with your brand will leave a positive impression.
#3 It creates close communication
Social media can also open up direct communication with potential customers. Have conversations with your community, speak directly to your followers, encourage interactions on the content you post. The Holy Grail? Start receiving interaction on your content or private messages on the social networks that you’ve engaged with. Routinely respond to all the comments or questions that are asked on this medium. You will be building the foundation of an effective social media marketing strategy and creating a positive feedback loop for a successful customer experience.
On this topic:
Improving the customer experience: an essential part of the digital transformation for single-family home builders
Be careful, though! These initial results take a long time to achieve. Don’t expect to attract thousands of followers in a few weeks. The process takes months, but your efforts won’t be in vain.
If your budget allows for it, and you wish to accelerate the process, you can sponsor your content or launch an advertising campaign on whatever social networks you choose.
Optimize your advertising spending by targeting your advertising to a specific geographic area or by filtering according to a specific demographic. For example, if you are a home builder in Lyon and you’re targeting first-time buyers, create a campaign that shows a 3D perspective of a home corresponding to that target and to the construction requirements for that region, and expose your ad campaign only to those who fit the following filters: the Lyon region and 25-35 years of age.
Also remember to indicate in your campaigns the names of the cities or places where you’re present or wish to become present. Future buyers who are specifically looking in this area will be all the more attentive to your communications.
#4 It generates traffic to your website permanently
Everything you post on social media on behalf of your brand should direct people to your website, whether it’s a contest announcement, an open house, a blog article, a 3D perspective from your catalog of homes, a link to a video, a picture of the homes you’ve constructed, etc. When a visitor visits your website, part of your goal has already been accomplished. To take it further, make sure everything is available there.
To go further:
3 indispensable content pieces for a home builder’s website
#5 It converts online prospects to actual buyers of new homes
Offer Internet users content that will make them want to take the next step, even if it’s only to register on your website by filling out a form in exchange for receiving the information they’re looking for.
Don’t forget about action call buttons on your site, as they attract the visitor’s attention and explain the actions expected of them.
Capture the information you need in order to lead them to your sales funnel. Then it’s up to your sales team to set up an appointment with them or an exploratory meeting or to visit a model home. If they are converted to buyers, they may become even more influential ambassadors on social media.