Facebook ads can be an excellent way for real estate agents to expand their reach and bring in more potential leads.

With its highly detailed targeting capabilities, advertising on the social platform lets you specify exactly who sees your ads (and where they’re located). You can also share ads across both Facebook and Instagram, even further improving your results — and ideally, your profits.

Are you thinking of putting a little budget toward digital advertising? Here’s what you need to know before running that first Facebook ad.

Who is your ideal consumer?

Sit down and hammer out the details of who that target user is. Where do they live? What stage are they at in life? What are their interests and hobbies? Paint a picture of precisely who you want your ads to reach, and try to put yourself in their shoes. What are their struggles, needs, and desires as they move toward buying or selling a home? You can even name them and give them their own persona to really help tap into their minds.

What is your goal for the campaign?

Are you looking to get more buyers? More sellers? Just raise awareness of your name and services? Your target customer and end-goal will be the guiding lights in your campaign. They’ll help you home in on copy and creative, and ensure your ad’s targeting is right on point.

What’s your budget?

How much are you willing to spend on the first go-around? If you have $250, for example, you might want to consider splitting that cash and doing an A/B test of your advertising efforts. See how one image/headline/line of copy compares with another, and then use those results to drive future campaigns more successfully. If your budget is small, feel free to start slower with one campaign at a time.

Launching Your Ad

Once you know these details, you can get to launching your campaign. Facebook’s tools walk you through the entire process, but here’s a sense of what you can expect:

  • Choosing an objective – Right off the bat, you’ll need to select an objective for your campaign. This should align with your goal (determined above) and can include things like “brand awareness,” “reach,” “traffic,” “engagement,” “conversions,” and more.
  • Defining your audience – You’ll next need to add in those targeting options we talked about. This means selecting the unique demographics of your target customer, their interests, and their behaviors. Behaviors like “likely to move,” “first-time homebuyer” and “recently married” are good ones to use if you’re looking to reach potential homebuyers. You can also target by geographic location, including city, ZIP code, or radius around a certain address.
  • Add in your budget – Next, you’ll set your budget for the campaign. You can choose to set a budget for the entire campaign or a daily budget. You’ll also need to put in the number of days your campaign will run and your credit card or other payment info in this area.
  • Choose your placements – The next step is to choose your ad’s placement — the individual areas of Facebook (and Instagram) where your ad will be displayed. You can choose placements in the newsfeed area, stories, messenger, marketplace, and more. Newsfeed placements are more expensive than the others, in most cases.
  • Put in your creative – This is when you’ll upload your image, copy, headline, URL, and other info for the ad. You can also choose what type of format you want your ad to take. There are single-image options, carousel options with multiple images, and even slideshows. You can also use video in your ads.

Finally, you’ll see the final mock-up of your ad. Make any adjustments you feel are necessary and when you’re ready, launch that campaign. Be sure to check back in regularly to make sure things are going as you had hoped. If they’re not, make changes to your targeting and creative, and take note of what works and what doesn’t. You’ll want to use this info when you launch additional campaigns in the future.

Pro tip: You don’t have to create full ad campaigns to take advantage of Facebook or Instagram advertising. If you’ve got a post or photo you’ve recently posted to the platform (one you think will really resonate with potential customers), then use the “boost / promote” feature to get more eyes on it. All it takes is a few dollars and a couple of clicks of a button, and your post becomes an active ad in minutes.

Want to Better Serve Your Customers?

Once your ads turn into bona fide leads, make sure you take care of those clients by referring them to knowledgeable, experienced vendors — like the loan officers here at Embrace Home Loans. Want to learn more about what we can offer your business and customers? Get in touch today.