Getting a good real estate investor marketing ROI with PPC and SEO can be time-consuming, expensive, and requires a fair amount of patience, but it can be insanely good.
Want to know what makes the difference between a giant leaky bucket of lost cash versus a good investment?
That’s what you’re going to learn in this post.
8 Ways to Increase Real Estate Investor Marketing ROI Using SEO and PPC
Seriously, we hate to watch people waste tons of money on PPC – or anywhere else, really. But PPC is especially big business. In Q4 of 2017 Google earned $31.91 billion – $27.22 billion of that coming from ads. So they’re doing something right. In fact, they’re doing a lot of things right… which is why we err on the side of caution when our members use Google to build and manage their real estate industry-specific AdWords accounts.
Do you think, for instance, that AdWords is built to help you save money? Or is it built to make Google money? I think it’s pretty darn safe to assume that Google’s interface is doing a fantastic job of making money for Google. It’s almost as if they spent fortunes hiring the best minds on the planet to help them make money… oh wait, that’s exactly what they did.
If only vanity metrics didn’t feel so darn good to watch.
So how do you beat ’em at their own game?
Learn, learn, and learn some more. AdWords knows how their platform performs, but it does not know the real estate investment industry. Google is a search giant, claiming at least 2/3 of all online queries.
That brings us to the specifics of getting great real estate investor marketing ROI from SEO & PPC:
Share This “SEO vs. PPC” Infographic On Your Site
1. Don’t put all your eggs in Google’s basket.
Even though the traffic counts might look a lot higher elsewhere when every lead is potentially worth thousands of dollars to your business, do you really want to risk losing them to other investors? Consider delivering your online real estate marketing across multiple platforms. Besides AdWords and organic Google SEO rankings, cast your marketing net into Bing, YouTube, Instagram, Craigslist, and Facebook.
2. Over $1700 spent on AdWords and no leads! Get really good data, then use it.
To get great ROI, it’s really important that you monitor and track your SEO and PPC campaigns so that you can continuously adjust them to improve your results. Make sure that you’re optimizing and ranking for keywords that are actually getting traffic, or else you won’t get leads and you won’t be spending money on what works.
The example above is a perfect reflection of spending money on what is not working. You must follow some protocol process to look at and pause keywords that are not driving in leads. Find out what your max cost per lead is and work your numbers back to budget your marketing.
Watch: How to Calculate Your Max Cost Per Real Estate Lead
Our team of SEO & PPC experts works closely with our tech and marketing departments to deliver the powerful combination of technology + creative that is essential to get huge ROI from online campaigns – and we constantly test in order to achieve continuous improvement on our already stellar results, because we know the value of great data.
3. Determine the intent of different keyword phrases.
It’s not enough to drive clicks and impressions to your PPC ad. In fact, that isn’t even the goal. The goal is to drive conversions to your website. If your ad isn’t generating high-commitment leads, then you’re wasting money. End of story.
The truth is, all other metrics are vanity metrics. Unless the ROI of your ad campaigns is positive, then you should stop spending money you’re not going to retrieve.
This is exactly why it’s so important for you to determine the intent of target keyword phrases before dumping dollar bills into AdWords, hoping for a return. The last thing you want is to get caught up in vanity metrics – click and impressions – assuming that your ad is performing well and keeping it running, only to find out that the people who were clicking and visiting your website weren’t actually interested in your service – they weren’t your target market.
To avoid that demise, ask yourself, “What is this person looking for? What do they want?” before choosing a set of keywords to target. Once you know why they’re searching for that phrase, you’ll have a far better chance of targeting the right people at high-commitment moments – which means you also have a much better chance of generating leads and building the business of your PPC dreams.
4. Set strict and realistic expectations.
Whether it’s a time-investment for SEO or a monetary investment for PPC, the truth is the same – to be successful, you need to set strict and realistic expectations for your efforts. Don’t go into a campaign thinking, “We’ll see what happens.” Instead, determine how many leads, realistically, that you want to generate and when you want to generate them by.
Crystal clear expectations drive SEO and PPC success, not random, “Let’s see what we can make happen.” Get specific, stay specific, and if you aren’t meeting your goals, stop. Then, figure out what you’re doing wrong and start again, or find somewhere more worthwhile to invest your money.
5. Track phone calls, not just form submissions.
Are you asking the people who call you if they’ve checked out your website? Chances are good that they have. Most people these days will visit your site to make sure you’re credible before picking up the phone. Google claims that phone numbers increase click-through rates by as much as 6% to 8%. Call tracking platforms such as CallRail or CallFire offer the technology to track the number of phone calls that are a direct result of your PPC campaigns. You’ll be able to accurately track phone call info to calculate your ROI.
6. Avoid just “trying it out.”
Don’t be one of those folks who say “that didn’t work for me” after spending thousands of dollars to get poor results from PPC and SEO. Instead, start with a concrete real estate marketing plan so that you know exactly the steps you’re going to take each month and the results you expect, then measure your actual performance and adjust along the way. SEO takes months (even years) of hard work to deliver a steady stream of daily leads, and even a good PPC campaign will take some time to produce results. Plus, it’s really tempting to be reactive and make big changes when searches are down for a month or two. Don’t “try it out.”
Create a plan with solid steps and an annual budget based on real data, or you’ll be throwing money away.
7. Hire help if you need it.
Do you want to pay someone to learn on your dime, or do you want great results?
It’s really a choice of investment strategy. If you’re investing in a business partner, relative or family friend who wants to become an expert at online real estate marketing, it might make sense to train them in-house. Or hire a VA.
Watch: 3 Key Mindset Changes You Need to Make Before Hiring Real Estate Virtual Assistant with Max Maxwell
Some of our clients have invested their time and money training employees or virtual assistants to drive their SEO & PPC campaigns (they’re using our trainings to teach ’em). That’s cool, but we’ve learned that the time and energy it takes to train the VA is rarely worth the time… once some folks become SEO & PPC experts, they recognize how valuable this kind of knowledge is… and they start charging a lot more money, then leave for someone who is paying more.
Others simply don’t want to spend their time, and they hire us so that they can focus on doing deals. We’ve created great systems that leverage great talent and killer technology, so we can charge less each month than it costs to hire someone in-house. Even the investors who are paying over $20K/month for their marketing can’t get results like ours from SEO & PPC. Online lead generation is our focus and specialty, so we’ve found a lot of great tools to reduce the time we spend while dramatically increasing the results. That’s the benefit of experience and wisdom and part of Our Mission:
Add humanity to business and help people regain time for the things that matter.
8. Focus on your target market.
If you’re a highly ambitious person, it’s exciting to make big plans.
But if you want great ROI, you’ve gotta focus and start small.
It’s important to pick keywords that reflect your target marketing, or else you’ll end up with a lot of expensive traffic and poor quality leads. I’ve heard horror stories from investors who spent loads of money and time on SEO, then finally started getting leads… but they weren’t in the investor’s city, or even in their country. “Motivated Sellers from Around the World” sounds kinda cool, but for business… it’s a total waste.
For good SEO results, you need to focus your optimization efforts on local keywords that have good traffic counts. Just choose a few good keywords, really work hard to rank high for those, and only when you have conquered your niche, then start adding additional keywords. (For all you military history buffs out there: how many generals have lost a war because they spread their troops too thin?)
With PPC, you can really localize the traffic using negative keywords, geographic limitations, bid rate and other factors that will dramatically improve the quality of your traffic and leads.
Of course, we handle all of that stuff for our clients, and we’re insanely proud of the results we get.
If you’re gonna try it on your own, educate yourself!
Yes. PPC and SEO can take a significant amount of time. At Carrot, we try to minimize the amount of time pursuing these marketing strategies will take by providing our members with a website optimized for conversion and search engines.
Still, the more you know, the better your website will perform, faster.
And these 8 ideas are a great place to start.