3 Tips to Get Best Results from Facebook Photos
In my role leading the Cook & James marketing team, I also often consult with our valued collaborators and colleagues and share my expertise on how to best boost their traditional and social media presence. One of the most frequent topics I find myself discussing with agents and brokers is Facebook photos – what’s the best way to use them, where’s the sweet spot for that “just right” number of images, how often should new photos post, and so on.
Let me tell you, you can be spot on with all the right responses to questions like these but if you don’t first follow these three tips, I can almost promise that results will be subpar from Facebook photos and images. And then usually your business results will follow a similarly subpar trajectory.
Create A Custom Banner
Your banner – the image at the top of your page - is truly the first impression your potential client gets when visiting your Facebook business page. Put time and thought into choosing something that speaks to your brand and avoid grabbing a generic image from your search engine and simply uploading it. By not creating something custom, not only are you poaching someone’s image, you also run the risk of having the exact same banner as another real estate professional. This typically hurts your brand and definitely exposes your lack of savvy in the realm of digital marketing and advertising.
But not to worry. You don’t have to be a polished graphic artist to get the job done. I always recommend two free tools for agents to use to create custom banners. The first is Canva, a design tool that allows you to easily create custom images— there are templates, fonts, images, shapes and colors, all free to choose from and extremely user friendly.
The second tool is Unsplash, a free photo website. With Unsplash, you don’t have to worry about stealing someone’s image. All photos are free and can be used for commercial and noncommercial purposes with no permissions necessary. One of my favorite image categories for real estate professionals is Unsplash’s gallery of luxury kitchens.
Include Your Own Professional Branding
I typically suggest that agents use an industry-specific photo such as a beautiful kitchen, home, landscape, or development and add your broker logo and/or your personal tagline. This is a great way for people who view your Facebook page to immediately recognize who you are, what you do, and what brand or brokerage you represent.
I also stress the importance of having a clean image. Do not include every last detail on your banner like your office, fax and cell numbers, website, email address, favorite charity, dog’s name and hobbies. All the basic ancillary contact information will be (should be) included in the “about” section on your business page and that’s where it should stay. If you’re not using a business page and therefore all this detailed information can’t live there, then that is an entirely different conversation!
Size DOES Matter
Despite some people’s insistence, sizing does matter.
Make sure you create a banner image correctly sized for Facebook, otherwise you risk losing viewers due to load time, blurriness and overall de-ranking on search engines. Remember, if your page or image takes longer than 2-3 seconds to fully load, you've lost the viewer.
The correct dimensions for desktop are 820 pixels wide and 312 pixels tall and, for mobile, they are 640 pixels wide by 360 pixels tall. If the image you choose or create is too small, Facebook will stretch the image on your page, producing a blurry or fuzzy picture. Again, this is where creating something custom on Canva can come in handy, since that tool allows you to customize the size.
One cautionary note about size: every social media platform has different size requirements, so make sure you always double check each platform and adjust your image accordingly to get the most out of the platform.
If you follow these three tips, you’ll be well on your way to optimizing the use of photos for business social media marketing and therefore be ready to take full advantage of the leads, contacts and connections facilitated via Facebook.
Mary Jackson is marketing manager at Cook & James and leads traditional and social marketing efforts. Expert in practical search engine optimization (SEO) applications, web development, analytics and other social media strategies, Mary is a frequent presenter at Cook & James outreach events. Additionally, she is available to consult with the firm’s agent and broker colleagues and collaborators on marketing strategy. Jackson holds degrees in business marketing and English/communications from Truett McConnell University in Cleveland, Ga., where she played on a volleyball scholarship.