<< by on February 2nd, 2011
Facebook ads target users based on the information they provide through their Facebook Profiles. Janet Driscoll Miller recently brought this topic up in a blog post about Facebook missing advertising opportunities. She stated that Facebook should be advertising to what we’ve shared in status messages to appeal to our recent interests – rather than stale information we entered into our Facebook profiles when we first created them in 2005.
However, recently I spotted an ad for “Free Baby Samples” on my Facebook home page…excuse me? I don’t have children and certainly don’t have anything on my profile about babies.
But WAIT. A friend DID post something on my wall…
There’s the culprit. So even though Facebook isn’t instantly deploying ads targeted to our latest status update, it does seem to be displaying ads according to what we share or our friends share on our Walls. The wall post is from Monday – and I just saw my first “baby” ad today – Wednesday. And for those of you that don’t know – YES, I am a Pittsburgh Steelers fan.
Facebook is somewhat elusive about what their ads actually pull from for ad targeting. From the Facebook Advertising Reach & Targeting info page:
A profile is a dynamic environment where people express themselves by sharing:
- what they’re doing at that moment in a status update
- their birthday, occupation, all-time-favorite band, movies, TV shows and other interests in the Info tab.
- their age, workplace, interests
- relationship status
We capture that information and share it with you in aggregate so your ad can reach the right audience. For an advertiser, profile data is a unique opportunity to reach customers like never before.
What exactly is “that information” though – is it all of it? – including what friends share on our walls? In this case it seems so.
To all the other social media types out there, what have you found?