How estate agencies and developers can use Performance Marketing to successfully market property on social media

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By Gil Sperling, Co-CEO: Flow Living

Digital marketing spend surpassed traditional marketing spend in 2020 – in the US, $151bn versus $107bn – and over 70% of global digital ad spend is spent on Facebook, Instagram and Google. But plenty of that money is also wasted when advertisers don’t properly target their audiences – which is why Performance Marketing is vital for effective reach and optimising budgets.

Performance Marketing is essentially paid media, placed at scale, incorporating the right data to deliver focused personalisation to target people who actually want your product. It may harness the power of tech and reams of data, but ultimately, it’s about personalisation. We know that people are more likely to transact online when something they want or need is being offered to them. Performance Marketing gives companies the tools to put the right ads in front of the right people, at the right time, on a 1:1 basis at scale of the 23 million people who use Facebook and Instagram in South Africa on a daily basis.

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Property and Performance Marketing

The property space in South Africa is an industry that is perfectly positioned for a transition to Performance Marketing – the South African property industry was missing out until proptech started revolutionising the rental and sales market. Agents have long relied on building relationships and ‘owning’ suburbs with prominent billboards and dustbin ads, but the world is moving on and the pandemic has changed the way people live, work, play and consume media.

The internet will remain the largest advertising platform, not only because large portions of the global population are working from home, forgoing their daily commute, and will probably continue to do so on a permanent basis; but because the global lockdown has also seen a huge increase in the time we all spend online.

The property industry is a different animal

Performance Marketing in property allows estate agents to know and understand who’s in the market for buying, renting or selling; what their price bracket is; their life stage; behaviour and therefore what is a relevant property for them.

FlowFuel reduces fragmentation within the property market through automation. It allows real estate agencies to automatically convert their listings into online ads that are served to a targeted audience across Facebook, Instagram and Google, using behavioural data. These digital ads offer advertisers high-quality and low-cost business leads, and are the fastest and easiest way to maximise marketing budget.

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How does this differ from traditional marketing? Let’s compare them in terms of the ‘funnel’ approach. Both share a funnel that comprises the three standard phases:

Awareness: Telling people you exist and what you do

Consideration: Having people start to engage and build trust

Transaction: Sales and driving the bottom line

Retention: Transacting throughout lifetime and trusted referral


Performance Property Marketing done right

Performance Marketing in property harnesses an agent’s hard-won reputational trust and area expertise, built over years, and puts it to much more effective use. It’s not FMCG where people need to buy groceries, log on, order and expect a delivery within hours. Buying a property is possibly the largest financial transaction a consumer will ever make, so the purchasing cycle takes way longer, from finding a reputable agent via awareness, lengthy Consideration, through to the Transaction phase that takes months, with plenty of paperwork.

Success, for an agent, then looks like having the right leads - motivated buyers and renters - delivered to them instantly via the automated ads, and being able to apply their skill, knowledge and trust, to converting them. FlowFuel removes that scattergun variable and allows the right consumer to find the right agent, in the right place and at the right time.

Closing the deal still relies on agent expertise

There are plenty of moving parts in the property purchase and rental journey – and we’re still moving towards making the end-to-end journey completely digital, but Performance Marketing brings together a huge number of the fragmented pieces. Social media has moved beyond likes, comments and shares – and our FlowFuel tool is taking property industry marketing into the 21st century.

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