5 Real Estate Ads that Sell Your House: Hit Them Right in the Feels

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Look around. How many ads can you spot in 30 seconds? The La Croix can on your desk, a Nike commercial playing on the nearby TV, the Amazon Firestick in your hand—it’s all branded.

Sounds crazy, but digital marketers estimate Americans see or hear 4,000-10,000 ads every day. As for the real estate ad promoting your for-sale home listing? Time to step it up.

“It’s kind of like a tree dropping in the forest,” laments Susan Melnick, a top-performing Dallas-based real estate agent with nearly 500 transactions under her belt.

You may not be a Madison Ave advertising exec a-la Don Draper, but you are an expert in knowing even the smallest aspects that make your property one of a kind. We dove deep into the marketing weeds to find 5 types of real estate ads that will help your listing stand out.

A beach used in a real estate ad.
Source: (Rob Christian Crosby/ Death to the Stock Photo)

1. The lifestyle ad

It’s not always about what’s inside the property that draws a buyer. What’s just outside your front door could be the most appealing aspect of your home.

Your place is so much more than its number of beds and baths. It’s also just a few blocks from the beach, or overlooks a riverfront trail. This kind of advertising can play to consumer’s wish fulfillment—everyone wants to improve their life, and your home could play a part in changing that.

The lifestyle ad uses copy and imagery to appeal to buyers. In your listing, mention features of your home, in addition to what kind of lifestyle buyers can adopt living there.

For example, your home might be short trek to the city center, making it appealing for buyers who struggle with their commute.

Incorporate that into the listing description: “Just two miles from downtown with access to direct bus lines at the end of the block.”

Fort Lauderdale-area agent Eddie Blanco uses this approach by using B-roll lifestyle shots in his video tours. It includes people skateboarding, biking, or walking their dogs on the beach. This makes it easier for buyers to visualize the life they could be living if they purchased this property.

Another example: Chicago real estate consultant Jose Hernandez recalled a property that sold after he shared a video of it on social media. “They were so excited about the city views in the video that they made an offer that same day.”

Check it out below:

2. The FOMO ad

If your neighborhood or market is booming, capitalize on the trend and use FOMO, or “Fear of Missing Out” to sell your home.

In a recent survey, 1 out of 4 potential homebuyers say, “they fear missing out on an opportunity for themselves to purchase when viewing others’ home photos on social media.”

The FOMO ad might include data on how quickly homes have been selling in the area, or news stories to support that your neighborhood is up and coming in the real estate world.

The classic “Don’t miss out!” could be the budge a buyer needs to book a showing, along with phrases like:

  • This home is going to sell fast
  • See it before everyone else
  • Check out what you’ve been missing out on in the city’s hottest neighborhood

When it comes to FOMO, remember that less is more. Use the above phrases sparingly—you only need one or two lines to make an impact. You want to get the buyer excited, not panicked or discouraged when it comes to your listing.

A man reading a real estate ad on an ipad.
Source: (Daniel Cañibano/ Unsplash)

3. The emotional ad

“So the best advertising for any seller is to have great photos on the internet,” explains Melnick, but an amazing description with evocative writing can go a long way when selling your home.

85% of online home shoppers find detailed information about listings to be “very useful” when it comes to the home search.

Using descriptive and imaginative copy can help create an emotional connection to the property and the area. To do this, when you mention a great feature of your home, tie it back to a relatable experience:

Take these examples:

Original: “Close to the beach!”
Emotional: “Relax with the sounds of the ocean and the beach a few sandy steps from the front door.”

Original: “In the middle of a happening neighborhood”
Emotional: “You’ll always be a part of the action in this vibrant and bustling community with easy access to shops, restaurants, and parks.”

Original: “Third floor balcony”
Emotional: “Take in the morning sun with a cup of coffee on the spacious third floor balcony.”

Original: “Spacious open-layout kitchen”
Emotional: “Invite the gang over for your dinner soiree and never miss a beat of the conversation in this prime gathering space.”

When your copy is ready to go, make sure your agent double checks the description for any words or phrases that might raise a red flag regarding the Fair Housing Act.

Certain descriptions, such as “perfect for a family,” or “private and exclusive” can be in violation of the Act.

4. The storytelling ad

Every home has a story to tell, so why not capitalize on that in your real estate ad? Whether it’s the experience and memories you’ve created in the home, or its historical significance, storytelling can be a valuable and memorable tool for selling your home.

This could be an opportunity for a simple live tour with commentary. Best selling author of Eat, Pray, Love Elizbeth Gilbert used this tactic when selling her home:

It’s clear for viewers that Gilbert loves and enjoys her home, making the video memorable. As the home seller, she knows her property best, being able to point out small details she loves.

You can pull off a similar effect in a static ad by talking about what the home used to be, or who previously occupied the property.

Maybe a notable author or historical figure once occupied your 200-year old farmhouse. It’s unlikely that this tidbit would be a buyer’s top priority, but small, significant details can help your listing be memorable among buyers.

5. The eye-candy ad

A picture is worth 1,000 words, so just imagine how effective 10 images are.

With Instagram’s Carousel feature, you can post up to ten images in a single post, making it a great tool for Real Estate Ads.

Here’s an opportunity to feature some professional shots of your home. Work with your agent to select the most impressive ones

“Instagram is still the place for heroic imagery,” says real estate marketing expert James Rozanski.” Heroic imagery refers to that featured shot that stops someone from scrolling and encourages viewers to explore the post.

a phone displays the instagram icon against a white background
Source: (NeONBRAND / Unsplash)

A few pointers to keep in mind for your Instagram eye-candy:

  • Feature an exterior shot of the home first.
    This will be the first image visitors will see, and you’ll want to “wow” them with a gorgeous shot of the property before showing them interior and details. They’re not just buying a kitchen or bathroom, so start large, then go smaller as you scroll through the images.
  • Geotag your listing. 
    Make sure to tag your home’s location to your post. That way, other users who are searched based on location can see your post, which means more engagement.
  • When it comes to filters, default to Clarendon, Lark, or Juno. 
    Clarendon is Instagram’s most popular filter and creates more color contrast in images, meaning brights will pop and shadows will look bolder. This is often recommended for exterior shots. Lark is also a good choice for exterior and garden shots, as it creates warm and deepens colors. Juno will create more depth by turning up the contrast, adding intensity and richness.
  • Don’t forget hashtags! 
    Images with hashtags see 12% more engagement than those without. Research local hashtags and include popular real estate hashtags like #JustListed, #NewListing, #ForSale, #OpenHouse, #HouseHunting, and #DreamHome.

95% of homebuyers search for homes online, and 72% find them through apps or websites. That means that how you market your property matters. Instead of a straight down the middle real estate ad, stand out by selecting an aspect of your listing, per ad, that makes it memorable. Don’t be afraid to dig deep, be creative, and let your inner ad exec shine through.

Header Image Source: (BigLike Images/ Shutterstock)