A Little Help Can Go A Long Way: How One REI BlackBook User Conquered Google Ads


Having resources available at your fingertips and using them to your full advantage can only help you succeed in pretty much anything – especially in your real estate investment business. 

This was the case for a REI BlackBook member and his venture into advertising online.  

Kent Knabe has been a REI BlackBook user for five years, however, didn’t start taking advantage of his membership until recently because he wasn’t doing a lot of marketing. 

He was getting his leads from a multiple listing service, courthouse auctions, referrals and mailing out probates. 

Knabe said he has a narrow focus when searching for the right house to rehab. It has to be in a good area with the best schools.

His purpose is to add love into each house he rehabs in order to bring it back to life.  

In April 2019, REI BlackBook hosted an Accelerator course on Google Ads presented by Dan Barrett. Knabe said he learned that leads coming from Google Ads are going to be more qualified. 

“Google Ads would be targeted to people that really were wanting to do something,” he said. 

“If they’re looking it up Google, these are people that are pretty motivated; that they’re wanting to do something fairly quickly.”

Knabe likes how Google Ads have the ability to target a certain market “very tightly.” 

“My niche is I don’t buy in North County or South County,” he said. “I target a certain part of St. Louis that I buy houses in.”

Following the accelerator, Knabe hired Barrett to help with his Google Ads. He started running his ads at the beginning of June 2019 and received a lead on a property 2-3 weeks later. 

The property was in a great area with great schools nearby, according to Knabe, and the house already had some completed updates.  

After the first visit, Knabe made an offer. He noted that the seller refused his first offer, but called him back a week later. A contract was signed in mid-July and he closed near the end of August. 

Knabe renovated the house and sold it within his target margin. Since last summer, he said he hasn’t been as successful as his first attempt because of his niche market.

“I’m not looking to build a huge business,” Knabe said. “My goal is to do about $2 million in sales a year, so that’s four houses that are half million dollars or five houses that are $400,000.”

“I make a good margin on that, and it helps cover my marketing costs and everything else,” he said. 

Knabe has some advice for those just starting out with Google Ads. 

“You don’t have to start out real big with it. You can start out smaller,” he said. 

He added that this is a process you have to keep adjusting and working on to succeed. 

In addition to Google Ads, Knabe has had success with Facebook Ads, thanks to another Accelerator course presented by REI BlackBook Marketing Director Josh Arras. 

He followed Arras’ scripts, put up a bandit ad and received a hit within five days. Knabe said he was under contract within three weeks of running to ad, which he cost him $120. 

With Facebook Ads, he mentioned that you can get more leads for less money, but not all of them are going to be as qualified as if they are coming from Google Ads.  

Knabe’s next task is master REI BlackBook’s latest software tool, Profit Drive.      

About Knabe 

In 2011, Knabe started his real estate investment business part-time. 

Four years later, he partly retired from a career in software in 2015 to focus more on his rehabbing business. 

Over the past nine years, Knabe has renovated approximately 55 houses. His goal is to target 5-6 houses in the $300,000-$500,000 price range. 

Click here to check out Knabe’s business.  

About Dan Barrett  

Barrett is the founder of AdWords Nerds, which is an online marketing expert and head of the Google Partner Agency, that is dedicated to helping real estate investors do deals online.

He has helped investors big and small generate hundreds of leads and deals online and has partnered with some of the biggest names in real estate investing. 

Would you like to learn more about REI BlackBook? Click here to set up a demo call today. 

What You Should Do Now:

  1. Get started with REI Blackbook for FREE: Get 14 days FREE access to our software and start converting more leads into deals.
  2. If you'd like to learn the exact strategies our power users are implementing to generate motivated seller leads consistently, check out our Motivated Seller Guide.
  3. If you'd like to learn how our team can build out your REI Blackbook system FOR you, head to our implementation page.
  4. If you know another real estate investor who'd enjoy reading this page, share it with them via email, Linkedin, Twitter or Facebook.

Get Started with REI BlackBook Today

Get started today and get 14 days free access
  • andy-wright

    Without REI BlackBook we would not have gotten as far as we have as fast as we have. It is an invaluable swiss army knife for our business.

    Andy Wright
    Mountain Shamrock Properties