The Big Guide to Facebook Audiences for Real Estate

Nov 11, 2016

Choosing the right audience for your Facebook ad can be the make or break factor in its success. Much of the time spent creating ads can an should be focused on the audience. This can be just as important as the creative itself.


Let’s take a look at all the different options for your Facebook audiences.


People who like your Page


This is a very fast and simple way to target your ads, just to people who have liked your page. Whether or not you use this method really depends on who likes your page. If you have thousands of people who like your page then it may be worth it. If its only 100-300 then you need to think about who they are. For starters, thats a small group to send an ad out too, and how many of them are close friends and family that you don’t need to advertise to as much?


As well, if you’re a popular agent in your area, then it may just be a lot of other agents liking your page. You need to take a look at who likes your page and decide if you actually want to spend money marketing to them. 80-90% of real estate agent pages I look at its probably better to not run campaigns to the people who like the page.



Friends of People who like your page


Running an ad to friends of people who like your page is a great way to add social proof. Each ad you run shows that your friends like the page. So if my friend “John Smith” was seeing ad run to friends of mine. It would show above the ad “Andrew Fogliato likes ____________”. Its a good way to peak the interest of potential clients a little bit more as its a silent endorsement of the page. This is also way you shouldn’t like another agents page.


Similar to people who like your page. You need to take a look at who likes your page. Are they people who have networks you want to target? Are they people who you want to make it look like they are endorsing you?


If you aren’t sure then run a small test at $5/day for up to a week and see what kind of results you get.



Cold Audience


A cold audience is one who has no connection to you whatsoever. You are targeting based on location, demographics and interests. You are going to narrow it down to try and get them to engage with your ad.


With a cold audience you need to spend a little extra time building trust. The further you can narrow your audience to a specific group the more likely they are to respond. A big mistake people make is making a cold audience too large to try and capture everybody. By narrowing the audience down and tailoring a message to the group it will resonate with them more.


For example, instead of targeting buyers try targeting first time buyers, or investors, or those looking to buy a bigger home. You know people with a growing family will need a bigger home so you can target by people who are parents.



Target by Customer Information


Creating a Custom Audience on Facebook can really take your marketing to the next level. This allows you to curate your perfect audience. It does take a little more work though. The first is to target people already on your list. The average email open rate for real estate emails is only 19%. By uploading your list to Facebook you can target messages to a larger portion of the list.


The benefit of this is they are more likely to interact with your content. This is one of the warmest audiences you can have. They’ve already interacted with you at some point so you have their contact information. You can also use this to segment your list.


For example, if I had a lot of leads looking in the first time buyer price range I’d add them to a list and when I have content or a listing specifically related to them I’d target the ads to them that way. I’d do the same for all the different price ranges and demographics in my community. Then as you get more leads over time you can keep adding to the custom list.



Target by Website Traffic


Facebook has a pixel that you can embed on your website. When you ask Facebook to create the Pixel for you all you have to do is embed it on your site, a simple copy and paste. If you aren’t sure how to do it then send the code to whoever runs your website and they can do it quite easily.


Once the code is embedded on your website it will start monitoring who comes to your website and then tracks them back to Facebook. Now you can start targeting them specifically with ads. Someone who has been to your website is a much warmer audience.


You can even take it one step further with the pixel and target people who came to specific pages on your site. Did you write a blog post about a school in a specific part of town? Now you can target anyone who read that article with ads about buying a home in that school district. You can target anyone who looked at a specific listing with updates about that listing. The ability to get creative with this is massive.


Even if you aren’t going to run ads for a while get the pixel installed on your site so you can start building the size of the list with people coming to your site. Worst case you never end up using it but its good to have the option there.


Pro Tip: Do you share articles and posts from other websites than your own? Use snip.ly and you can have that article shared with a pixel on it. So you could theoretically share an article from a major news outlet and then retarget anyone who clicked through your link and read it. 


Target by Engagement on Facebook


Do you have videos in your marketing plan? If you do then you should definitely upload them directly to Facebook. Then go into your custom audiences and build audiences based on people who have actually watched your video.  You can decide based on how much of your videos people actually watched.


This is a huge opportunity for agents. Usually retargeting has to be done by people leaving Facebook and being hit with a pixel. Now it can be based on the video content on Facebook they are engaging with. Next time you create a video tour of one of your listings you can retarget people who watched it with updates on the property like a price change, or a sold campaign. You can also retarget with additional properties in the same price range since you now know the range they’re interested in.


You can target based on the amount of your videos that they watched too. Someone who watches 95% of your video is a lot more likely to engage or opt in on your next offering than somebody who only watched 3 seconds. Your options for adding someone to an audience is anyone who has watched at least 3 seconds, 10 seconds, 25%, 50%, 75%, or 95% of one of your videos.



Lookalike Audience


Once you’ve created custom audiences you have a new option; the lookalike audience. Facebook collects reams of data on all its users. By analyzing the data they are able to learn a lot about who you are. Then they can analyze trends in the data and then identify patterns. When you ask Facebook to create a lookalike audience based on one of your other audiences they will search through the data and find people the most like them.


How can you use this? Upload a list of your past clients, feel free to not include clients you disliked, and have Facebook create an audience of people who are similar to your past clients. This will improve the chances that the leads you end up getting are people that you will enjoy working with. Even ones more likely to opt-in to your offers as well. This means a lower cost per lead.


The ultimate goal of using the power of Facebook audiences is to target them with a highly specific message that resonates. By doing this you’ll get more opt-ins and lower the cost of your advertising. By not taking advantage of everything Facebook has to offer in their ad platform. you’re doing your business a disservice.