Facebook Ads For Real Estate: 10 Killer Ad Strategies

by Toby

September 17, 2018

Real Estate Testimonial Facebook Ad

Agency Tested & Proven Ways To Gain More Real Estate Leads With Facebook Ads

*Recently updated with Facebook’s latest changes. *


In this post, I am sharing targeting strategies and ad types you can implement NOW for your real estate Facebook ad campaigns. What is important to remember before we get going into the best content is that Facebook marketing for real estate is dependent on paid ad strategies – without ads, your organic non-paid posts will get you nowhere (page posts without ads reach at best 1% of your fans).

Do Facebook Ads For Realtors Work?

Yes, Facebook ads for realtors work. The people that want to buy the homes you are selling, or the people that want to find a realtor to sell their home, are on Facebook in higher numbers and for longer periods of time than any other channel bar none. Your success depends on your strategy, consistency, and ongoing campaign adjustments.

With Facebook ads, an entire world of potential opens for marketing real estate.

Below are proven tactics that generate results.

We have tested these tactics in our agency with real estate clients nationwide to generate buyer listings, seller leads, and to create omnipresent awareness with the target audience in local markets to more effectively farm territories.

The benefit to you: a shortened learning curve that has been tested which you can implement now!

Read our related post on marketing to all levels of the real estate sales funnel using Facebook ads, and using Facebook ads to grow seller listing leads.

3 Core Pillars Of Success For Real Estate Ads On Facebook

  1. Targeting – the most important component which I’m discussing below (the options available are unbelievably specific and precise – unmatched with anything else you’re doing to drive leads)
  2. Campaign Objectives – Facebook has more than 10 campaign objectives (Lead generation, Brand Awareness, Engagement, Reach, Conversions, and more)
    • Many real estate professionals start with the infamous Boost Post which is part of the Engagement objective – you should stop that now as most of that ad spend is wasted (related post here on why and another post here on Boost Posts vs Facebook Ads, which is better? )
  3. Your Ad – what type of ad (single image, carousel ad, lead ad, video ad, etc.), and then what is the imagery and copy written into the ad

The targeting you choose for your ads is the single most important determining factor to your Facebook ad campaign success and your ability to generate seller listing leads and buyer leads.


Show your ads to the wrong audience, and it doesn’t matter what else you do, or what you offer, you won’t be successful. But…

The best part is that with Facebook ads you can be precise and targeted so your ads show only to your ideal customers and you get results that deliver leads.

Most realtors are still not using effective Facebook ad campaign strategies – the benefit is that you have an opportunity to create an impact now on your business and grow leads that your peers are missing out on.

Why Facebook Ads For Real Estate Agents?

Facebook Ads for Real Estate Agents

The Facebook ad platform offers an unrivaled rich, diverse, and deep level of ad targeting options no other advertising platform can provide. This allows you to reach your ideal target customer very efficiently and not waste ad dollars showing to people that are not interested in your services. This cannot be achieved with any other marketing channel.

Below are the three broad areas of Facebook ad targeting.

In a minute, I’ll show you how powerful this is and how you can zero in on your ideal customer. Each of the 3 buckets below opens up hundreds of options.

  • Interests – what are people interested in, pages they have liked, and closely related topics
  • Behaviors – reach people based on past purchases or intent to purchase (i.e., people looking to buy a home)
  • Demographics – include age, income, kids or no kids, parents living in the home, job title, own or rent a current home, and hundreds of other options

All these targets can be further segmented geographically – by zip code, city, state, or within a radius of a specific point on the map as well.

But let’s see how this targeting works…

How laser-focused can you get with your Facebook advertising?

And how it can benefit you and your real estate lead generation efforts?

Without further ado, here are 10 proven Facebook ad tactics for realtors (not in order of importance).

Laser Targeted Segmentation

Facebook Ad Tactic # 1: Lead Ads

Lead Ads are a special type of Facebook ad that allows you to capture either buyer or seller leads right within Facebook. There’s no need to send the traffic off Facebook. Leads Ads are particularly useful for growing seller leads (a related post here on how to target home sellers and grow seller leads).

The main benefits of Lead Ads are:

  • No need for a landing page since you’re capturing the lead within Facebook
  • Easier for the customer to submit their information to you as Facebook will pre-fill form fields (even more important for people on mobile devices that would have a hard time filling out a form on your website)
  • Leads can be easily downloaded straight out of Facebook or sent directly to a Google sheet (there are many options)
  • Can be set up so that buyer and seller leads are funneled directly into your CRM or marketing automation software (such as InfusionSoft, or email marketing programs like MailChimp)

The ad below is a Lead Ad for a realtor:

Real Estate Lead Ad
Real Estate Facebook Lead Ad

When someone clicks on the ad, it opens a form to capture the necessary information that you need. You have the option to create many different fields to capture more information.

For example, if you were running home evaluation ads to capture seller leads, you could ask for the person’s first and last name, email address, phone number, and home address for the evaluation.

Real estate leads captured in Facebook like this are immediately available to you and can be downloaded directly out of Facebook or funneled into your CRM or marketing automation platform for an email sequence (i.e., MailChimp, Infusionsoft, etc.)

Real Estate Facebook Ad: Lead Ad Form
Real Estate Facebook Ad: Lead Ad Form

Facebook Ad Tactic # 2: Buying A House

Facebook has a very specific interest category for people that are potential buyers, it’s called – “Buying A House”

How fantastic is that?

The intent of a consumer in the “Buying A House” bucket has a higher likelihood of needing a real estate agent, among a whole host of other products and services.

Facebook knows who these consumers are from its rich behavioral data sets that include both online and offline data about these specific consumers.

Laser Targeted Facebook Segmentation

Suppose you’re a realtor in San Diego, and you specialize in the areas in and around the Poway, Rancho Bernardo, and Scripps Ranch areas – mostly upper middle-income neighborhoods with Household Incomes (HHI) above $100,000 per year.

If we pull zip codes in those areas on Facebook, we find 170,000 people that we can reach on Facebook. But when we add the behavior of “Buying A House” we narrow that target down to potential buyers with active intent.

Here’s what that looks like in Facebook’s ad platform:

buying a house facebook ad targeting for buyers
Real Estate Facebook Ads Targeting: Buying A House

The amazing benefit of Facebook ads for real estate is that you can continue to layer the targeting and get more precise and focused on who your ideal customer is – whether that’s a buyer or seller you’re looking for.

However, you want to be careful not to narrow your audience too much otherwise it can become too small.

Facebook Ad Tactic # 3 – Real Estate Investors

Perhaps you want to target real estate investors? You can reach those people on Facebook as well.

facebook ad targeting real estate investors
Facebook Ad Targeting: Real Estate Investors

Our ad targeting now includes:

  • Geography: Targeted San Diego zip codes of the areas that you’re farming for leads
  • Age and gender selection
  • Real Estate Investing

Now our target audience is 5,100 people.

facebook ad targeting real estate investors san diego
Facebook Ad Targeting Real Estate Investors San Diego

Facebook Ad Tactic # 4 – Target People That Are Browsing Realtor.com, Zillow, and Trulia

People browsing these sites are actively searching for homes. You can layer this targeting on as well with other interests, behaviors, and demographic targets.

You know people visiting these sites are highly likely to be prequalified leads since they are actively browsing real estate sites.

Targeting Realtor.com Trulia and Zillow
Targeting Realtor.com Trulia and Zillow

What’s MOST important about targeting sites like Zillow and others is that companies spend big dollars ($$$$) creating brand awareness for their apps and driving people to their websites sending thousands of people to the sites. Facebook knows who these people are and they are available to target. You are benefiting from the ad spend these companies are investing in traditional and digital marketing!

Facebook Ad Tactic # 5: Use FREE Home Evaluation Ads To Generate Seller Leads

Home evaluation leads are one of the best real estate ad campaigns you can run for filling your pipeline with new prospects.

The below Facebook campaign generated seller listing leads consistently at less than $6 per lead by running an ad with free home valuations for the neighborhood where the ad was showing. Without a doubt, you can pique people’s interest in their home valuations by showing them what other homes are valued at.

Real Estate Lead Ad
Real Estate Facebook Lead Ad

Less than $6 seller listing leads.

Real Estate Lead Ad Results

Facebook Realtor Ad Tactic #6: Testimonial Ads – Satisfied Customers Can Be Your Promoters

Real estate testimonial ads on Facebook can be very powerful at building up trust and social proof with your target customer.

Facebook Testimonial Ad - Real Estate
Facebook Testimonial Ad – Real Estate

Social proof and trust are critical elements to growing your long-term lead generation efforts.

You can build testimonial ads with past home buyers and sellers as single image ads, carousel ads, video ads, and more – there are many options.

And you can land the ad traffic on a page on your website that has the testimonials.

Running testimonial ads is more about ongoing branding – part of creating that digital yard sign, and creating omnipresence and mindshare in your community. Testimonial ads are powerful social proof. If you’re going to create a steady flow of leads ongoing, you have to be branding yourself too…not just focused entirely on seller leads (a related post here is helpful for understanding real estate facebook ad strategy at different levels of the sales funnel).

Pro tips:

  1. If you land people on your website, you can then remarket to them on Facebook for up to 6 months maintaining mindshare and nurturing them along to becoming a customer
  2. If you’re running video ads, you can remarket to those people based on how long they watched your video for

Remarketing is another reason why Facebook is so effective. Imagine if you could serve ads to people that got your postcard based on how long they looked at your postcard? Think of the advertising possibilities.

Facebook Ad Tactic # 7: Video Ads

Video ads that display a property, for example, will give you amazingly low-cost reach (Reach is the number of unique people that see your ad) with your target customer in the geographic areas you’re farming.

Example of a Video Ad of a home tour for a buyer lead:

Facebook Real Estate Video Ad
Facebook Real Estate Video Ad

How much exposure can you get with video ads?

Imagine 65,000 impressions in the area where your target customer lives for $0.01 per view! Penny views!

Facebook Real Estate Video Ad Results
Facebook Real Estate Video Ad Results

Where else are you going to advertise where you can get someone to view your ad for a penny?

Another reason why Facebook is such a powerful platform for you.

If you’re not embracing what Facebook has to offer you’re missing the golden age of this platform.

Facebook Ad Tactic # 8: Plan Out Your Ad Campaign

Planning out your Facebook ad campaigns will go a long way in creating more success, and real estate leads for you.

Many advertisers do very little planning, but…

If you plan around the season, calendar events (holidays), and your properties you will be far more successful.

Below the screenshot is the campaign planning guide in Excel that you can download to help get you going – there are 3 tabs (I’m only showing you one here) that will help you plan and organize an effective Facebook campaign.

Facebook Ad Planning Guide For Realtors
Facebook Ad Planning Guide For Realtors

Facebook Ad Tactic # 9: Integrating Facebook Ads with Traditional Advertising For Greater Response Rates

This is one of the most common tactics that is overlooked.

Postcards, flyers, door hangers, and local community papers are still standard tactics for creating awareness within for realtors within the geographic area you’re farming for real estate leads.

But, did you know…

You can run your Facebook ads to those same exact people at the same time your traditional marketing is dropped in those neighborhoods just by choosing those same geographic areas.

So not only will you show in their mailbox, but now those same people are seeing you on their desktop computers and mobile phones with your Facebook ad campaign.

Why would you want to do that?

Today’s consumers need an average of 12.4 average touchpoints (impressions) before making a purchase decision (source: Think With Google).

Multiple impressions across multiple advertising channels are critical to growing awareness and mindshare.

The end result is…

Running Facebook ads in the same neighborhoods that your traditional marketing grows awareness, greater trust with you, and most importantly, increased leads.

Traditional real estate marketing is far more effective if it’s integrated with online tactics.

Facebook Ad Tactic # 10: Awareness with Mortgage Brokers For More Referrals

Job title targeting is one of the other fantastic variables you can fine-tune Facebook ads with to grow awareness for your real estate services.

Mortgage brokers can be a good source of referrals for realtors – (the last home I bought the realtor was referred to us from our mortgage broker).

If you want to create awareness about your real estate services among mortgage brokers and maintain mindshare that you’re the best in the community, Facebook ads are effective at targeting them. (If you’re a mortgage broker, we have a related post here, Facebook Ads For Mortgage Brokers – Case Study)

This is illustrated below.

We selected anyone with a mortgage broker-related job title, and we even threw in people that work at Wells Fargo with a mortgage-related title (we could do the same for all the other banks too).

In the below example, we managed to reach under 1,000 people which is fine when you’re doing laser-targeted focused community marketing and branding (the best practice is to have larger audiences than this).

An ad campaign like this would cost very little money but would have an amazing impact on awareness of your brand of real estate services.

Now you’re creating that omnipresence that is so important in your local market.

Targeting Mortgage Brokers With Facebook Ads
Targeting Mortgage Brokers With Facebook Ads

In conclusion, I presented 10 Facebook ad strategies for real estate that included ad types and some of the many targeting options any agent can implement quickly to grow brand awareness and leads. These 10 tips are only scratching the surface of what’s possible.

One bonus tactic –  Chat Bots!! Read about them here!!

If you want to grow your lead real estate leads this year and gain a strong competitive advantage over your slower, less sophisticated peers, Facebook ads for real estate are a proven way to grow your business and local market share.

The tactical ad strategies presented above are just the tip of the iceberg – there are so many more targeting options.

With Facebook, you can be incredibly targeted and endlessly creative in how you sell real estate and reach the home buyer or seller audience.

Don’t let your competitors steal your customers!

If you need help with your local Facebook advertising, we can help. Please call or email today and find out how we can help you win in your market.

Facebook Ads For Realtor Course and Training

Not sure if you want to do it on your own? Call us!

Read another related post on why you should stop using boosted posts now.


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About the author 


Toby is the co-founder of 39 Celsius. He has over 20 years of digital marketing experience and has started several different companies throughout his career.

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