Facebook is ramping up by offering a new pilot program called Facebook Exchange to select advertisers and partners. Facebook Exchange enables brands to retarget their Facebook ads after a user has visited the brand’s website.
So what does that mean? Without going into all techy jargon about retargeted ads, when someone visits a brand’s website, they are tracked. The brand’s website notifies Facebook of the user’s visit, so next time that person logs in to their Facebook account, that brand’s ad will appear to the side of the user’s Facebook page. Of course the average user visits lots of websites, so only the brand that pays the highest bid will get their ad displayed.
What does this mean for brands? Facebook has traditionally been seen by advertisers as a tool to increase brand awareness rather than a medium where click-throughs lead to direct sales. Re-targeted ads are enabling Facebook to take a step away from the top of the demand generation funnel and towards demand fulfillment. Retargeted ads are the latest announcement from Facebook which enables them to generate revenue and monetise their offering to advertisers without disengaging Facebook users.
How much revenue will Facebook Exchange generate for brands? We’ll have to wait and see.