Nextdoor Real Estate

In the increasingly competitive world of real estate, agents are continuously on the lookout for innovative methods of lead generation. One platform that has gained popularity among some agents recently is Nextdoor, a social networking service for neighborhoods. The platform’s local focus and spirit of community make it a potential goldmine for agents. Some, however, have found Nextdoor real estate listings to be a challenging path to traverse.

Most agents admitting to having faced hurdles such as limitations in the platform’s advertising functionalities, a lukewarm response from the community, and even struggling to establish a consistent and engaging online presence. These mixed experiences reveal that Nextdoor real estate advertising can’t be approached with a one-size-fits-all strategy. Successful utilization of the platform demands a more nuanced, tailored approach that we’ll go over here:

How Real Estate Agents can use Nextdoor

When it comes to using Nextdoor for real estate there are a couple paths to take:

  • Agents can leverage the Nextdoor advertising platform for brand advertising and lead generation, which in some instances (albeit rare) can be a primary source for an agents leads. Typically though this serves as brand advertising that is less conclusive in terms of ROI
  • Agents can also act as users on Nextdoor posting about local market insights and area events, without investing in paid ads. This ends up becoming more of a passive branding vehicle similar to real world community involvement strategies.

This divergence in use cases underscores that the platform hasn’t yet matured for use as a real estate marketing tool.

How does Nextdoor advertising work for real estate?

Nextdoor’s advertising model is designed to accommodate a wide range of advertisers, but conceptually is very well suited for real estate because it allows agents to leverage the platform to reach out to communities and prospects. The promise of the Nextdoor platform is that it’s the digital equivalent of geo-farming.

Nextdoor real estate

Here’s a breakdown of how advertising works on Nextdoor based on the provided summary:

  • Ad-Supported Platform: Nextdoor operates as an ad-supported platform, meaning that it relies on advertisements to remain free for its users. This model supports both the businesses advertising on the platform and the community of users by keeping the service accessible without charge.
  • Who Can Advertise: Any business, regardless of size, can advertise on Nextdoor as long as it adheres to the platform’s Ad Policy. This inclusivity ensures that both local and national brands can engage with and provide information about their services to the community.
  • Ad Placement: Advertisements on Nextdoor are displayed in various high-visibility areas, including the main newsfeed, digest emails, the in-app digest, and the For Sale and Free section. These ads are clearly labeled as “Sponsored” to distinguish them from non-sponsored content, ensuring transparency for users.
  • How to Advertise: Businesses interested in advertising on Nextdoor can find multiple options to suit their marketing strategies. Local businesses targeting customers within a 30-mile radius can utilize advertising tools directly from their business profile on Nextdoor. This local advertising approach is ideal for businesses aiming to reach new and existing customers in their immediate area.
  • Expanding Reach: For businesses with a broader target market, spanning several neighborhoods or nationwide, Nextdoor offers brand advertising opportunities. These options are tailored for regional and national companies looking to increase their visibility and reach potential customers across multiple markets.

By offering a range of advertising solutions, Nextdoor facilitates targeted marketing efforts, helping businesses to grow their customer base and enhance community awareness of their offerings.

Many agents remark at the low cost of advertising on Nextdoor however it’s not uncommon for agents to also get underwhelmed with the results. Still for agents working on a tight budget, yet wanting to tap the potential local leads, Nextdoor warrants a closer look with a small test budget.

Using Nextdoor for Community Engagement

When exploring strategies to make the most of Nextdoor real estate listings, one common line of action that emerges is active community engagement. By design, Nextdoor is a digital version of a real world community – which means the conversations and interactions will be all over the map.

The platform is intended for neighborly discussions and local community engagement; but like any social media platform, it is subject to the realities of human interaction – both positive and negative. Agents must navigate the intricate balance of community ties in order to ensure positive professional networking.

Nextdoor real estate marketing tactics for agents

With this balance in mind, for agents looking to gain positive attention towards their brand there are a few recommended tactics:

  • being a reliable source for info: community event info, yard sales, road closures, emergency notifications, new retail and restaurants, or just answering questions from the community
  • offering specific help: handy house maintenance tips (ex: how to clean out gutters in advance of a storm)
  • engage other local businesses: promote local services/vendors that may be able to add value to the community (ex: suggest a local HVAC maintenance company when seasons are changing)
  • genuine commitment to community participation: provide positive feedback whenever possible
  • Other forms of adding value to discussions: get creative on how to offer advice/insights, and support to the community

Effective Nextdoor engagement requires more than just creating a profile. It means being active providing helpful, responsive info and while staying respectful of community norms.

And agents that have the most success with Nextdoor, blend these types of online community engagement with and other advertising AND offline community engagement. This hybrid strategy allows agents to capitalize on the Nextdoor platform’s localized reach while layering in campaigns that allow for deeper engagement:

Challenges and Restrictions

The platform is intended for neighborly discussions and local community engagement; but like any social media platform, it’s not perfect.

Here are some of the challenges that real estate agents have reported when using Nextdoor for prospecting:

  • Negative energy: Nextdoor discussions are subject to the realities of human interaction – both positive and negative. Agents must navigate the intricate balance of community ties in order to ensure positive professional networking.
  • Being perceived as spamming: Pushy networking tactics can backfire leading to negative perceptions within a community, affecting a realtor’s reputation and business…and in some extreme cases, being banned and/or facing restrictions on the platform.

It’s clear that community dynamics including – the level of drama, negative or positive energy, community attitudes, and specific etiquette norms – play a significant role in how effective Nextdoor, can be as a platform for real estate promotion.

The key is to understand the dynamics of individual communities – their do’s and don’ts, their collective attitudes – and tactfully craft your engagement and overall marketing strategy. When used correctly, Nextdoor holds the potential to be a surprisingly beneficial tool for connecting agents with local leads.

Alternatives and Comparisons to Nextdoor Real Estate Ads

When it comes to advertising channels, it’s important to constantly compare results and adjust course accordingly. Here are the top alternatives to Nextdoor for real estate agents to consider:

  • Meta: Unsurprisingly, Nextdoor’s closest competitor is going to be Facebook+Instagram (aka Meta) and with the massive user adoption and robust advertising platform, it’s a challenging comparison for Nextdoor. On Facebook/Instagram, real estate agents enjoy the freedom to create extensive and striking visual advertisements, fostering a broadly scattered but potentially less engaged audience. In comparison, Nextdoor real estate listings offer a more focused local user base, even though the advertising capabilities are more restrained.
  • Google Pay-per-click Advertising: Google ads are a slightly different beast than Nextdoor since they’re related to user’s searches. That means the audience is very high intent and the ads come at a much higher cost. Localization is possible too with Google Ads and that’s where Google Business becomes more of a factor especially for real estate agents.
  • Google Business: A Google Business profile is table stakes for any agent…and agents should be pushing to get more reviews on their profile so they rank higher in local searches on Google. But even if they don’t rank the highest in terms of reviews, Google Ads has various local placements (ex: Google Maps) which allow agents to advertise their Google Business profile to high intent audiences.
  • Yelp: Yelp is the top local search platform for US consumers and while Google Business is continually trying to take market share, Yelp is still a great choice for real estate businesses that are trying to attract consumers in a specific region. In addition to organic search results, the Yelp Business product has ads that allow businesses to pay for placement in specific searches in specific areas. There are also other premium features that Yelp offers businesses to highlight and promote their business. Some of these – for example email newsletter placement – overlap with Nextdoor’s offering.
  • Real Life Community Engagement: Let’s get real (as in offline aka IRL). Communities start in the real world and that’s where the most impactful engagement exists. Real estate agents should also consider participation in community events, charities, chamber of commerce, and even client appreciation events to create real world bonds with a communities members.
  • Geo-farming: Geo-farming is one of the proven ways to get more listings and is one of the best offline comparisons to the Nextdoor real estate advertising services. Whether it’s targeting a neighborhood with mailers, postcards, EDDM campaigns or sending Real Estate Swag out, geo-farming is a great way to engage prospects where they live!

The key takeaway is that leveraging these platforms should not be an either-or choice. Instead, a synergy of both, tailored to the agent’s unique requirements, could yield the desired results. Diving deeper into this premise, we discover an array of aspects for consideration- geographic targeting, community engagement, ad regulations, and audience demographics. Assessing these factors can help real estate professionals strategize their marketing efforts efficiently for lead generation.

Nextdoor presents a unique and potentially promising avenue for agents looking to deepen their community ties and enhance local visibility. As a platform rooted in neighborhood connections and local engagement, Nextdoor offers real estate professionals an unparalleled opportunity to showcase their listings, share success stories, and build a trusted presence in the areas they serve. The specificity and locality of Nextdoor ads allow for a targeted approach, reaching potential buyers and sellers right in their own neighborhoods. This can significantly increase the relevance and impact of advertising efforts, making Nextdoor a valuable component of a comprehensive real estate marketing strategy.

Overall, consensus among agents we discussed Nextdoor advertising with is that while Nextdoor can play a role in a broader marketing strategy, relying solely on its advertising will not yield the desired results and will fail to show positive ROI.

Agents that have had success with Nextdoor advocated for a more integrated approach that includes direct community engagement, strategic use of various advertising platforms, and efforts to build a strong local brand and reputation.

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