Categories Facebook How Facebook’s Data Collection Benefits Real Estate Agents January 8, 2018Author travisthom If you have ever wondered how Facebook always seems to know exactly what ads to show you? Well, you’ve come to the right place! In this article, we will go over how Facebook collects their user’s information, and how you as a Realtor can use it to your advantage when advertising on their platform. It’s becoming a pretty common occurrence these days when people are browsing their news feed. They’re served the perfect ad, at the perfect time, and it almost seems as if it was fate for them to see it. While it might seem as if it was too good to be true, these types of incidences are no coincidence. Facebook has continued to make massive improvements when it comes to their advertising platform, and data gathering is arguably their most valuable asset. Facebooks Data Collection Practices… Facebook has been buying consumer data in droves from third-party data brokers since 2012. Once aggregated, they have over 600 various points of your personal data giving them an insane amount of information on your personal behaviors, interests, and demographics. Don’t take our word for it. Just take 5 minutes to browse all of the targeting criteria in your ads manager. It’s mind-boggling how much information they have access to. The information included in the targeting comes from data brokers such as Acxiom, Oracle, Datalogix, and Epsilon. These third party data companies collect information from credit card providers, public databases, mailing lists, browsing cookies and much, much more! In other words, when someone visits Zillow, Realtor.com, or they are simply pricing out a mortgage online, it’s recorded, packaged and then sold to Facebook. Over the years the company has been diligently accumulating all of this information so that advertisers, like us, can target users interested in our services with amazing accuracy. While this might be new information to some of us, the fact of the matter is, almost every large search engine, major retailer, grocery store chain, and financial institution is selling Facebook data to help build up their behavior profiles for advertisers. But, that is just the beginning… Once all of the 3rd party data is paired with your public profile, search history, contacts, friends list, and even things as simple as the settings on your account, it allows Facebook to create a profile so complex that one could argue their algorithms know more about your buying behaviors than even you do. It has even been said that with the information available, they can just about predict your next move. These data collection practices have been going on for several years now and Facebook is definitely reaping the rewards. You could say this information is the backbone of Facebook’s success and by allowing advertisers access to this information for targeting, they’re positioning themselves to become one of the largest advertising platforms in the world. It’s only going to get better from here… And that is great news for us!! Recently, Facebook announced that they are working on another technology that will allow them to take these behavior profiles to a whole new level. The company is now using their ‘Applied Machine Learning’ to improve upon their existing practices. The new AI Technology is allowing the company to even further refine their advertising platform making their targeting an even more valuable than it already is. While this might be a little unnerving for some. All of this is amazing news for us Real Estate Agents marketing on Facebook. By implementing these various tactics the company is giving us the ability to target our audiences with pinpoint accuracy. And, in turn, opening up even more options for the types of campaigns we’re able to run; seller, buyer, partnership, etc. In other words, whatever type of targeting it is you’re looking for, they will eventually have it available. Well, that’s all for now folks. Thank you again for reading our blog and feel free to let us know if you have any questions, comments, or suggestions in the comments below.