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The Basics of Building a Killer Facebook Targeting Strategy

So — you’ve entered the world of Facebook advertising. Now it’s time to focus on the big question that is (or should be) on your mind: How do you make sure the right people see your ads at the right time? Constructing a sound targeting strategy is absolutely imperative to running an effective set of Facebook ads — after all, you don’t want to waste your marketing budget or your time on ads that aren’t reaching the right people. Let’s dive in and explore four of the most important things to keep in mind when building your targeting strategy so you’re reaching the prime audience.


Until recently, Facebook’s location targeting was incredibly granular — you could essentially rope off a certain zip code and just target people within it.

In the past few months, though, Facebook has come under fire for potentially violating the Fair Housing Act. The claim was that Facebook was giving advertisers control over things that could unfairly advantage people of certain races and income levels, with some advanced ZIP code targeting strategies bordering on redlining.

To address this, Facebook has made some changes to its location targeting system. You can still target people by ZIP code, but you must target at least 15 miles around a given ZIP code.

This new, broader location targeting is still immensely useful for advertising purposes, though. By centering your ads around your target zip code, you can ensure your ad is being seen by the most relevant prospects. Location targeting is a great “set-it-and-forget-it” tactic. While many of the other types of targeting require a more active approach to optimize, location targeting is something you can rely on time and time again.

A screenshot of the location, age, and gender targeting options in Facebook Business Manager.
A screenshot of the location, age, and gender targeting options in Facebook Business Manager.


Interest targeting is a broader form of targeting that helps put your ad in front of people who’ve engaged with similar pages and groups. Feel free to play around with this as you see fit — after all, you know your audience better than anyone. You can also combine interest targeting with location targeting . For example, you could opt to target people in a 15-mile radius around your target ZIP who have liked HGTV’s Facebook page.

Interest targeting may seem like fun and games, but it’s imperative to building a fully flesh-out targeting strategy. Make sure to pay attention to the specificity (or lack thereof) you’re using when selecting interests while building your ad. There’s a world of difference between people who like “YouTube” and people who like a local real estate blog.


Demographic targeting is just what it sounds like, giving you the ability to target members of nearly any conceivable demographic. The most useful tools for most realtors will be income and home ownership status, but there are a wealth of options to explore.

These demographic targeting options are a great way to experiment with your audience. Selling a starter home? Try targeting people within a lower income bracket who are likely first-time home buyers. Moving a more luxurious property? Boost the income bracket and consider targeting current homeowners.

A screenshot of the rest of the targeting options available through Facebook Business Manager,
A screenshot of the rest of the targeting options available through Facebook Business Manager,


Remember, this will look different for every property you plan to advertise. Putting together a plan like this for each property is a major investment of time and effort. That being said, it’s a surefire way to get your property in front of the people who are most likely to show interest (and by extension, turn into viable leads).  So — what are you waiting for? Hop into Business Manager and put your new Facebook targeting strategy to use!

Happy advertising!

By The Disclosure
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