Facebook users may soon see a new advertising trend arriving in their sidebars. The social networking site has introduced a new system of “partner categories” which advertisers can choose from to target more specific markets.
The categories are made up of more than 500 groups, allowing prospective advertisers to choose exactly who they want to reach out to. One example provided in a press release depicted groups as specific as “people who buy children’s cereals”.
These groups have arrived on Facebook as the result of a partnership with companies Datalogix, Epsilon, and Axciom. These companies will be providing data for Facebook to use in an effort to smarten up advertising results. Of course, this means that Facebook ads will now be based on user browsing habits on the rest of the Internet.
As you may know, Facebook’s original method of advertising was concocted from information based on usage within the site itself. This expansion into the whole of the Web is a giant leap for the networking service.
While Facebook itself will not be watching you as you traverse the Internet, its associates definitely will. Because of this, user responses are expected to be rather lukewarm. Logically, the site must utilize ads as a method of bringing in revenue, and as with any business, the system must be improved upon. However, many Facebook users tend to worry enough about their privacy, and this move is not going to make their concerns any less.
Do you believe this is a good move on Facebook’s part? Are you more likely to welcome ads that target you specifically? Or would you prefer Facebook to not use data from outside sources?