Last week RE/MAX Europe attended the Ad World Conference 2021. This event is the biggest digital conference surrounding the topic of paid ads globally. With paid social media advertising being such a key focus topic for RE/MAX Agents and Broker/Owners across our network, we asked RE/MAX Europe's Senior Digital Media Manager, Will Campbell to share some of his main take-aways from the event.
- - - -
With more than 100 sessions to choose from with topics ranging from building a personal brand, lead generation, creating brand advocates, e-commerce and much more, there were certainly many opportunities to hear from some of the digital world’s top minds and transfer their lessons to the world of real estate.
Today I would like to talk about the first talk I managed to see at the event. It was from Germany's leading digital marketing expert, CEO of CTR Accelerator, and inventor of the PCTR Loop, Daniel Hipke. In this article I have taken the key take-aways from Daniel Hipke's talk and elaborated on them for both RE/MAX Europe Agents and Broker/Owners.
I want to mention at this stage that all credit for the PCTR Loop concept goes to Daniel Hipke. This article is written purely in the interest of knowledge-sharing for the RE/MAX Europe network.
BUILD A SELF-SUSTAINING LEAD MACHINE
Creating ads which create enquiries on your website is good but what is even better is creating a self-sustaining system of paid ads which drive up the temperature of your leads and bring in new potential clients or recruits at the same time. This is done by developing a PCTR Loop with your paid content.
PCTR stands for Pitch, Content, Trust and Remind. As opposed to a traditional marketing funnel where leads are encouraged to take increasing levels of interest in your brand, a PCTR Loop is a series of paid social media ad content types which feed into each other and result in much warmer leads. Visualized as a figure of eight, customers or prospects can join the loop at any stage and the process will still be effective.
One thing to bear in mind: To create a PCTR Loop that automatically creates new leads for your business, you will need 10 to 25 different ad creatives and texts. These ad materials will need to be high quality with a clearly defined focus.
where should my focus be?
When setting up your paid campaign on Facebook or Instagram you may be asking yourself: What is the most important part of a social media ad campaign? Is it the ad creatives, the offer, or the ad targeting?
Well, it is in fact all those things, but you need to know where to split your focus. Daniel Hipke of CTR Accelerator shared that when he creates social media ad campaigns 50% of his focus goes into the offer, 40% goes into the ad creatives (the images or videos you want to use), and 10% goes into the audience targeting.
The success of your ad campaign starts with the offer. If the offer is not relevant or attractive to your potential customers, they will simply keep scrolling. Consider the value you want to provide to your potential clients – are you offering a free evaluation, new listings, or job opportunities? Think about the language you want to use – does your audience respond well to quick simple messages or do they like to have all the information up front? Consider how quickly you can deliver on your offer - this includes having a solution in place to respond to requests quickly or making sure your landing page can be accessed without too much clicking around.
The reason the ad creatives should take up 40% of your focus is because you should be thinking about multiple versions of your ad campaign. On average your potential customer will have to see your ad six or seven times before engaging with it. Therefore, providing a variety of materials they can consume and making sure they don’t get bored of seeing your message is key. You should use different visuals which work together to drive towards one attractive goal. It is also best practice when running multiple ad creatives to test campaigns against one another to see which one performs best. This is called A/B testing and is a great way to focus in on the type of ad content that works best for your offer.
The last 10% of your focus should be on choosing your audience and targeting the right people. Of course, ads need an audience to be effective in any way, but contrary to some ways of thinking, focusing a larger portion of your energy on who will see your ad might not be the best use of your time. Daniel Hipke of CTR Accelerator suggests that if your offer is clear and attractive, and your creatives are well chosen and engaging, then the targeting should become less of a priority. Facebook prefers you keep a broad audience and let the algorithm find the perfect recipients for your ads for you.
the loop: pitch, content, trust, remind
Pitch – start with a performance ad which clearly shows your offer, your services, or the solution you are proposing to your clients. Most people will run a paid social media ad campaign and, after being impressed with the initial reach, are then disappointed by the lack of leads – this is because most people get stuck at this stage of the PCTR Loop and do not scale their campaigns further.
Content – in this stage of the loop you need to provide what are called ‘value videos’. This is where you handle objections before they even come up. For most agents this could be engaging video content around why FSBOs are a bad idea or why exclusive listing agreements are the best way to go. Agents and Broker/Owners will know all too well the kind of objections they hear on a daily basis. Use those experiences, generate your value videos, and show your expertise.
Trust – now is the time to back your offer and your expertise up with testimonials. Show that there are real people out there that were happy they worked with you. Remember that potential customers are much more likely to convert into clients if they can see people like them have had a positive experience. Don’t be afraid to ask past clients to get in front of camera and be sure to have suggestions ready about aspects of your business they can talk about. This could even include a podcast or interview.
Remind – this is the stage in the loop where you are creating short form content to remind your audience of your services and your value. This can also include non-paid content such as stories, short video posts and blog articles. With regards to paid ads, it is advised to run a short 30 to 40 second video keeping you top of mind.
Once you have each of these four stages running and you can see who has interacted with your ads, it’s time to retarget. Complete all four stages again but define the audience as those who have already seen or interacted with your ads. This then closes the PCTR loop and because your ads are running all the time and generating new interest constantly, you are creating maximum impact through a growing audience.
maintain the machine
Of course, setting a PCTR Loop up is only the first step. Like any machine it will need optimizing and maintaining. If you start to notice a dip in the quality of leads you are gaining or a decline in your new audience growth it is time to create new ads with more up to date content and a refreshed offer.
Paid social media ads are a fantastic way to reach your audience and generate new clients, but by building a PCTR Loop for your business you will be head and shoulders above the competition outside the RE/MAX Europe network. Start making plans for your own PCTR Loop today and see better results tomorrow.
I would like to thank Daniel Hipke for an inspiring talk at Ad World Conference and for his work creating the excellent PCTR Loop concept.