Facebook’s updates in August 2020 provide more opportunities to property managers to engage with their community, generate trust, and build their network.
- Posts & comments in Facebook Groups have more newsfeed visibility than Page posts & comments
- Creating a Facebook Group as a property manager can nurture leads, improve tenant communication and encourage investors to work with you
- Facebook’s improved accessibility updates broaden the reach of your posts
- Users now have more control over how much of your content they see – you can use the data on this to create more content that’s performing better
- Property managers can use Facebook’s online events for additional revenue & to increase engagement in their community
2020 Facebook Updates Property Managers Should Know About
You may have noticed that Facebook is looking different these days – a LOT different! Between its cleaner, brighter design, its stronger emphasis on groups, improved accessibility, new page follow settings, paid online events, and more, there’s a lot to take in.
So we’ve picked out the updates that we think will be most relevant to property managers, and highlighted how you can make the most of them.
How Property Managers Can Utilize Facebook Groups
The first Facebook update property managers need to have on their radar is Facebook Groups. Facebook is making Groups more important than ever. But what does that mean exactly?
Facebook Groups are becoming prioritized in newsfeeds. You may have noticed already that posts to your Page are showing up less and less in newsfeeds. This move actually started in 2018 with a new Facebook algorithm called Facebook Zero. We won’t go crazy into detail about that now (you can read more here), but what you need to know is that the intention behind Facebook Zero was to foster more tighter-knit communities on the app.
This explains why posts made in the Facebook Groups you’re a part of, are now all over your newsfeed.
So how does this affect property managers?
Well, you should keep in mind that organic posts on your Page aren’t reaching as far as they did before.
And we would strongly recommend that you consider building a Facebook Group associated with your Page.
What Kinds of Groups Property Managers Can Create
We’ve come up with several ideas for groups that property managers can create on Facebook to grow their network, generate trust, and ultimately, increase their business:
Property Managers & Vendors in Your Area: Do a quick search on Facebook to see if there’s already a Facebook group that’s been created for your local area. If not, this is your time to shine! By creating and facilitating a place for local property managers and vendors to connect, share ideas and ask questions, you will position yourself as the authority in your area.
Property Owners & Investors: Start a group for both your current owners, and interested investors. If you’ve been creating content for your website blog, you can share that content in your group as well. Use this content to prompt discussions, Q&A’s, etc. Existing owners will appreciate learning from you and seeing how knowledgeable you are in the industry. New investors will like this opportunity to learn more about your company without having to commit quite yet. This is a perfect “incubating” space for new investors, where you can nurture your relationship with them and demonstrate your expertise.
Current Tenants: Use a Facebook group to create a community for your current tenants! You can post great educational content that will help them maintain their rental, and quickly send out relevant information. Establish yourself as a proactive and caring property manager by posting weather, traffic or event updates that could affect your tenants. Make your group “private” so that tenants feel more comfortable asking questions, and to protect their privacy.
Ultimately, the power of Facebook Groups is to build community and trust. Before you quickly come up with a name and throw up a Group, spend some time with your team talking about the purpose behind the Group, who will facilitate it, what content you’ll share, and how frequently you’ll check on it. A poorly managed Group can backfire, so be sure you have the resources, time, and clear vision of how the Group will operate before you get started.
Facebook is Becoming More Accessible
It shouldn’t be a surprise that in 2020 part of the Facebook update includes accessibility improvements. These include but are not limited to:
- Scalable font sizes (improves reading accessibility)
- Contextual headings implemented in the correct, descending order (assists folks using a screen reader to navigate the page)
- Full keyboard navigation (for folks who can’t use a mouse)
To read more about the new accessibility improvements, see the update posted on Facebook Engineering.
Why is this important for you to know, as a property manager?
More accessibility on social media means that your content is able to reach a broader scope of people. This means a bigger pool of leads, owners, tenants and investors.
It also means that if you’ve been late to the game in terms of ensuring that your website is accessible, it’s time to step up! Check out our recent podcast episode and blog post about website accessibility, and reach out to us if you have any questions.
Facebook’s New Page Follow Settings
As of August 2020, Facebook is testing out new page follow settings. Their test seems to include some users being able to control what posts they see from a page based on whether the post is a post, video, live video or offer, according to this article. If this update gets rolled out to everyone, your followers can now choose whether they want to just receive highlights, or all content you post related to each of the categories mentioned above.
There are two ways property managers can use this to their advantage:
1) Make sure your followers know about these new options so that they can opt-in to receive more of your content if they want to, and
2) Watch the analytics of your posts to find out what kinds of content your followers are subscribing to.
If your videos are getting much better engagement than photo-only or text-only posts, your followers may be specifically subscribing to that content. Focus your time and energy on the type of content that your followers are already engaging with.
If you’re not sure how to track these analytics, reach out to us at Fourandhalf — we’re happy to help you craft a content and data-driven social media strategy.
A NOTE FROM US: When we looked for these new settings on our Facebook page in September, we didn’t see quite this range of options — yet. But we did notice a “Follow Settings” option which allowed users to have more control over how a Page’s posts appeared on their newsfeed, and whether they were receiving notifications for every post, or just the highlights. Stay tuned for updates!
How Property Managers Can Use Facebook’s New Paid Online Events
The world was already moving more and more online before COVID-19, and now, we’re online more than ever. In light of this, another Facebook update property managers should know about is the creation of “Online Events.”
These are different from Facebook’s regular “Events” option in two important ways:
1) They provide attendees easy access to video engagement with messenger rooms, Facebook Live or an external link, and
2) Attendees can pay for the event directly through Facebook, without any additional fees from Facebook for the next year.
This is a great opportunity for property managers to build community, share educational content and make a little extra revenue. Off the top of our heads, here are three webinar-style ideas that you could turn into paid online events on Facebook:
- Investors: What To Look For In A Property Management Company
- Owners: How to Identify Great Rental Properties To Purchase
- Tenants: 3 Quick & Easy Maintenance Fixes You Can Do Without Calling Us
Want more ideas? Give us a call, and let’s talk about how you can step up your social media marketing game.
Get The Most Out of Facebook in 2020
If you remember nothing else from our blog today, remember that Facebook Groups are getting the spotlight right now, front and center. Whether you’re making them or joining them, as a property manager, this is a great time for you to engage with your online community and demonstrate your expertise.
You should know the latest trends, so that your marketing is reaching its fullest potential.
The Fourandhalf Team is here to support you and your property management business, crafting holistic marketing strategies that can shift with our rapidly growing and changing world. Send us a quick note if you’d like to schedule a call.