[SMK] Social Media Knowledge


Facebook Working On Privacy Friendly “Basic Ads” Product

Facebook is developing a new ad product that doesn’t use advanced targeting, reports Business Insider.

According to the site, Meta wants to launch a privacy-friendly Facebook ads format that uses less data for targeting.

Called Basic Ads, BI said that two ad buyers from separate agencies told it that it will be aimed at marketers who want to “build awareness and shape perception of products” and would be measured by metrics such as video views and engagement.

Using those simple metrics means that advertisers who create good ads that receive higher rates of interaction could see a reduced cost of engagement due to the algorithm spreading it across Facebook Feeds – although there’s no guarantee that interested users will see your ad.

So, it’ll be a bit of a scattergun approach, but kiss enough frogs and you may land up with a prince. And, because of the scale Facebook can offer, it may be an attractive proposition to a lot of marketers out there.

Why is Facebook developing it?

Facebook is developing Basic Ads to fight off Apple’s infamous ATT update that sparked heaps of users to opt out of personal data collection in the app. It’s been so crippling that Meta estimated it would cost it $10 billion in lost ad money for 2022.

As you can see, that’s an incredible loss for someone to absorb – even a mighty beast like Meta. Which means they were compelled to deliver a product that doesn’t infringe on those privacy concerns.

Anonymous Ad Buyer, Business Insider

“Basic Ads does contrast one of the biggest attributes of Facebook’s ad platform: the granular of targeting. But ads that can still deliver scale while also able to usurp data regulations like CCPA and GDPR would still get dollars invested into Facebook.”

Less granular advertising

Marketers who want to continue spending money on Facebook Ads might have to sacrifice some of the targeting that made them so effective in the first place to reach a broader range of people. But with other platforms such as TikTok making moves to provide retargeting campaigns, it’s going to be difficult to justify sticking with Facebook for too long.

Anonymous Ad Buyer, Business Insider

“If they can show that retargeting is driving performance, brands will absolutely move more dollars to TikTok from Facebook.”

The assumption here is that less targeting campaigns will be worse at bringing in direct results, but could be good at boosting exposure without using intrusive data. However, these ads could be (and should be) cheaper, so that means you may not have to spend as much on them.

Mixed response

Ad agency response has been mixed. The people interviewed by Business Insider seemed to think that marketers would still use Basic Ads if they delivered on scale while complying with privacy regulation.

However, Meta is playing a dangerous game by limiting some scope for its ads while competitors are building the scope for theirs.

David Coleman, SVP Strategy and Development, Ocean Media, via Business Insider

“Advertisers spending those brand dollars are concerned with what their ads will be placed against. They need premium content to pull those dollars from CTV, or linear TV, or YouTube. Meta tried with Facebook Watch to invest in content, but that fizzled. Without premium content, they’re not going to be able to drive brand dollars.”

So in general it’s a mixed response to a new ad format that will preserve some of the trends we’ve seen in advertising over the last five years. There are clear upsides and downsides to Basic Ads, and marketers are going to have to think about trading precision targeting for more broad-reaching campaigns.

That might be fine for you – or you may have to look into TikTok’s latest offering. But either way, it’s good to know what’s coming over the horizon. 


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