I saw these the other day when I was setting up some Facebook adverts and didn’t think much of them at the time. We have seen friend related stories before on Facebook but these are different.
Sponsored stories are more targeted and advertisers pay for the ability to make your like or comment, status update from a page, the play of a game in an app or the click of a like button on a website appear as an advert for your friends to consume. That’s it, you heard me right - Facebook is turning user’s content into an advertisement, but calling it a Sponsored Story.
Crafty? Yes. Controversial? Yes, again. The problem is users (and this includes myself) can’t opt out of these adverts. I guess an argument could be put forward that there’s no problem if only your friends can see that advert. But there’s another argument here. Should Facebook be allowed to to sell your engagement with it’s website to advertisers and then your friends? Thing is they can.
Facebook advertising is great because of how well targeted it is. I love using it because you can get such great results! And I think people don’t realise (or in all likelihood never actually read the terms and conditions) that Facebook has so much power over their profiles and sells that information to companies for them to target advertising.
The API graph in Facebook is brilliant because of the level of detail that you can dig down into. But also a little scary. Imagine how many people would object if they actually knew what happened to their information?
I think Facebook’s accurate targeting is what makes it so appealing for someone like myself. Added the Facebook Insights that you receive on a page aren’t up to Google Analytics standards yet, but they could be. Is it Big Brother (the book not the TV rubbish) or just the way the internet has become?