As the digital media space continues to explode, advancements in digital advertising opportunities are not only essential but expected. The most eagerly anticipated was Facebook’s Ad network, which failed to materialise in 2012. With an incomparable number of privacy complications and the sheer volume of data and users to consider, will the social giant take the plunge in 2013 and give in to digital industry demands?
It’s no secret that the platform’s intention is to re-structure their business model to improve their investment returns, and the Social Network version of Google’s Adsense, unofficially titled Facebook Adsense, would have an unprecedented impact if predictions from analysts are accurate. With over 1.01 billion users on the platform, Facebook’s data use policy is arguably the most scrutinised within the digital space. Having caused much controversy over privacy in the past, Facebook has had to take several revision steps to expand its ability to serve ads to users while they’re outside of the site itself.
After policy changes made in 2012, Facebook advertising only permitted consumer-relevant ads to be displayed to users within the platform itself. Expanding on this, Facebook announced it will use profile data from the platform to serve relevant ‘social context’ ads outside of Facebook. This means that Facebook has the power to serve any type of ad to you outside of the platform. According to Chief privacy officer Erin Egan, “Everything you do and say on Facebook can be used to serve you ads”. Now, even the most prudent Social Network users will be exposed to ad serving, with content being used for targeting.
The success of Adsense proved that this model is effective. With a substantial base of advertisers and over 1 billion users, Facebook has more than enough substance to compete with Google on publisher payouts. While this still won’t put them in Google’s revenue range, analysts predict that an external ad network could double their revenue.
Though there are privacy reforms in place and that the revenue capabilities for Facebook Adsense would transform the platform’s business model, there is still unrest at the decision. It seems the value for both the network and its potential partners is not yet significant enough for them to compete with the likes of Google.
Facebook’s biggest asset is the data they have on their audience. How much of this are they really going to give away? Without it, they are just another publisher with lots of inventory. There needs to be a balance between data control and data transparency. If Facebook Adsense operates on a similar basis to Google’s system, they are going to be surrendering a lot of the influence they have over this data.
It is my estimate that the foundations for industry-transforming advertising capabilities are in place, and Facebook will find a means of streamlining the service to make it desirable. If it is achieved, advertisers will have unparalleled targeting capabilities for the world’s largest social market.
If you would like to discuss these changes and how 4Ps Marketing as a digital advertising agency can help you to use this data to target your audience more efficiently, please get in touch by emailing [email protected].
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