Whether you are using Zillow, realtor.com, Facebook Ads, Google Adwords or a third-party display network to generate more leads, there are best practices and tricks to optimize your campaigns. I thought I’d share my top five.

  • State your intent clearly to better ensure that only interested parties visit your page.
  • A/B test and optimize your campaigns for conversion.
  • Change your Facebook ad creative regularly.
  • Optimize your landing pages for mobile.

Whether you are using Zillow, realtor.com, Facebook Ads, Google Adwords or a third-party display network to generate more leads, there are best practices and tricks to optimize your campaigns. I thought I’d share my top five.

Now, when I say optimization, I mean three things:

  • Decreasing your cost to acquire a lead/customer, your CAC
  • Increasing the speed at which leads come in
  • Increasing the conversion of leads into appointments and sales

State your intent very clearly on the ads

If you ask the creator of any successful digital marketing campaign, regardless of industry, one pattern that you will find is that all of the campaigns had very clear ad copy.

This means that the prospect knows you’re trying to sell them, they know what you’re selling and they are OK with it. This increases the chance they will convert into sales.

Whenever you are creating a new marketing campaign to target homesellers or homebuyers, be clear as to what you are offering and why someone should click on the ad.

Example: If you are targeting homesellers in Toronto, your ad copy should mention the word “Toronto” somewhere.

“Wondering How Much Your Home Is Worth Today in Toronto? – Get A Free Home Valuation”

Unless you are using an advanced landing page that calculates the value of someone’s home instantly using their data, avoid using words like “instant,” “right now” and so on.

Your goal is to attract leads and make sure that they understand your intent to give them a call with a market report and home valuation.

State this clearly on your landing page. You will save a ton of time and money because only those who are genuinely interested will fill out the form.

A/B test your landing pages

Hearing the phrase “A/B test” for the first time? Don’t freak out; it’s a common term used in the internet marketing world.

A/B testing means: “launching two or more variations of your landing page to see which one is performing better.”

You should particularly focus on the word variation, image variation, web form placement and, overall, how to properly execute a successful A/B testing campaign using the latest software.


Example: You are offering a free checklist to homebuyers, and your form is on the left with a few bullet points to the right.

A “B” variation could be switching the form to the right side of the landing page. A third variation might involve using pictures of people; a fourth variation is using a picture of a house for sale.

The important thing to note is that each of your A/B testing variations should be slightly different than the others so that the behavior of users interacting with your landing pages can be accurately measured.

However, only change one element at a time.

Changing the landing page to a completely new design is a very common A/B testing mistake because the data you get from the two different variations will not directly give you the feedback you require to constantly improve your conversion rate for your ad campaigns. (What part or parts of the design you changed helped your conversion rate? If you change more than one element, you’ll never know.)

Most landing page software these days allow you to deploy multiple variations easily. We have tested and recommend InstaPage or UnBounce. Try A/B testing with your current and future campaigns.

Once you start getting some conversions, analyze which version is working better and direct a greater percentage of traffic towards it.

Then, figure out why one version of your landing page is working better, make subtle changes to your underperforming versions, and repeat!

Constant A/B testing is a best practice of marketing mavericks! Keep measuring and adjusting your landing pages, and you will definitely improve your lead count with time.

Optimize campaigns for conversion

Most real estate agents run their campaign on both Facebook and Google Adwords to generate leads. When your campaign starts getting at least three leads, tweak the settings so that it’s optimized for conversions.

In order to start optimizing your conversions, you need to ensure that both Google’s conversion tag as well Facebook pixel is installed on the “thank you” page. It’s important that these tags fire whenever someone fills out a form so that the conversions are recorded.

Install these two Chrome browser plugins to make sure that your pixels and tracking codes are implemented properly:

Once you have optimized the campaigns for conversions, the algorithms will try to generate more leads for your daily budget by showing the ads in front of people who are more likely to convert. This is helpful if you are an agent with a limited daily budget because you can get an extra lead or two when your campaigns are optimized based on previous conversions.

For Facebook Ads, you should change the ad-set to pay for impressions and optimize for conversion. This is by far the best combination that you can use for lead generation on Facebook.

Change ad creatives on Facebook with increased frequency

Keep a very close eye on the frequency count for a Facebook ad campaign. The frequency count refers to how often someone is viewing your ad for the custom audience that you are targeting towards.

In the real estate lead generation industry, anything above a frequency of 2.8 means it’s time to change your creatives.

However, if you are generating a lot of leads at a lower cost per acquisition (CPA), keep the ads running. The last thing you want to do is change something on a successful campaign and see the lead count drop.


However, there is a high benchmark where “ad fatigue” starts setting in.

In the Silicon Valley marketing scene, the best practice is to change your creative when the frequency exceeds 4 or 5, max. After this frequency, you’re paying to have your ad in front of people; however, they aren’t noticing.

Now, if you are not getting enough leads or your leads per day is decreasing, that’s a sign to change your ad creative and do some A/B testing.

We recommend that you always use two to three images for your Facebook ad to see which ones are performing better, then swap the under-performing ones with new creatives. Keeping the ads fresh means people are more likely to click them once they see it on their newsfeeds.

AdEspresso is a tool that helps marketers create lots of ad creative combinations in a short period of time.

Also, try to use images with no text because the Facebook algorithm prefers them — our testing has revealed pictures of people’s faces convert higher than landscapes.

Ultimately, your goal for your buyer and seller campaigns should be to get a click-through rate (CTR) of 1 percent.

Anything above 1 percent — especially in tier-1 areas like Toronto, Los Angeles and New York — means people are responding well to your ads.

Optimize your landing pages for mobile devices

In 2017, optimizing your landing pages for mobile should be your No. 1 priority to generate more leads from your digital marketing campaigns.

Here’s why: Nearly 50 percent of people browse Facebook and Google using their mobile phones. Therefore, if you want to decrease your CAC and increase the speed of lead acquisition, offer a mobile-friendly and responsive landing page.

Mobile-friendly landing pages should have a clear headline, a good call to action (CTA) as well as an easy-to-fill form. You can always work on your original landing page design and tweak it for mobile devices.

Remember, when people are browsing on mobile, they are always swiping — and you need to have attention-grabbing call to actions in order to make them fill out the form (remember tip No. 1 — be clear and direct).

A/B test different CTA phrases on mobile and desktop to see which ones are performing better.

And test your landing page using Google’s mobile-friendly page test so that you can fix all the errors that pop up on your landing page. The test will determine whether your landing page is optimized for various mobile devices.

Grant Findlay-Shirras is the CEO of Parkbench.com and the Local Leader Real Estate Marketing System. Follow Grant on Instagram and Twitter @GrantFSofficial.

Email Grant Findlay-Shirras.

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