What real estate agents think they know about Facebook but really don’t

What you don't know will hurt you

Here’s a quick quiz for you. Just answer true or false to these questions:

  • The ideal Facebook page status update is a photo.
  • You should no longer ask questions in status updates.
  • Post once a day for maximum efficacy.
  • No one will see your posts if you don’t pay to boost your posts.

How do you think you did? Be honest with yourself. I know that these are common statements made by many real estate agents — and they got them from social media teachers, trainers and speakers.

Guess what? Every single one of these statements is false. Every. Single. One.

FacebookFacts_128368295
Facebook myths image via Shutterstock.

Let’s go through each one:

The ideal Facebook page status update is a photo.

Yes, Facebook users love photos. However, the ideal Facebook page status update isn’t a photo. Despite users’ love of photos, the ideal page status update is still a simple plain text update, with around four to 10 words in a single sentence.

Don’t get me wrong, Facebook is still penalizing pages that manipulate plain text updates (especially when it comes to sharing links: page owners were deleting the “preview” and making the update “ugly”) but they are not penalizing “real” plain text updates. Despite users love of photos, users still respond more to plain text updates.

You should no longer ask questions in status updates.

I saw this shared by a very well-known and well-liked person in our industry. Unfortunately, they couldn’t be more wrong. The best overall engagement you’ll get is when you ask interesting or meaningful questions of your fans. Ask questions that inspire people to answer.

One of the best ones I’ve asked on our real estate pages is: “A new kitchen or a luxury vacation?” People LOVE this question — seriously — it is quick and easy for them to answer, and they are more than willing to share their “opinion,” aka their answer.

There is a caveat to this: You must also engage. When they answer the question, you need to respond to them. Engage with them. Have a conversation. That’s the point of the question in the first place, right?

In fact, just about everything you post should have some element of a question — whether you are simply sharing content from another source, or posting your own content. The way to increase engagement is to ask black/white, yes/no, one-word-answer questions.

Post once a day for maximum efficacy.

Oh goodness. A couple of months ago, this was true. Now? It’s completely the opposite. The Facebook pages with the most activity and engagement are pages that post multiple times each day. The absolute minimum you should be posting to your page is three to four times a day. The ideal? Six to eight, throughout the entire 24-hour period.

Why? Because Facebook has changed its algorithm (because the older Facebook gets, the more profiles are created, the more pages are created, the more people each person is connected to, which means there is simply too much going on to put it all in each person’s news feed,) which is why your posts are reaching so few people.

Each post is only “fresh” for two to four hours, which means you’ve got to have something going up every three to four hours on your page. You may get in front of only 10-20 people with each post (this number depends on how many highly targeted likes your page has), but each post gets in front of 10-20 different people. If you are posting at least three to four times each day, over the course of an entire week you’ve reached 210-280 of your likes — this is a good thing.

There is a caveat with this too: You must post relevant, interesting and wanted content. How does Facebook know what is relevant, interesting and wanted? By the reactions of your followers: click-throughs, likes, comments, shares, etc.

No one will see your posts if you don’t pay to boost your posts.

Yeah, this isn’t true. Like I just said, it’s about how many posts you put up each day, how relevant those posts are to your audience and how targeted your audience is.

For the most part, you shouldn’t even be using the “boost post” option. When to boost posts and what posts to boost are a training article all in itself, or maybe even a mini-webinar training (let me know if you’d be interested in a mini-webinar training on this in the comments below).

Do any of these surprise you?

Christina Ethridge is the founder of LeadsAndLeverage.com, helping real estate agents capture, convert and close Facebook leads.


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