As if Facebook isn’t scary enough soon you might be seeing product ads based on the realtime contents of your status updates.
Yes, that’s right, post a status update now and a related ad appears – now! Imagine that! Type something about going for a run and up pops an ad for Nike. Or casually mention that you’re having a blue with your partner and bam!, an ad for a divorce lawyer.
Here’s how AdAge Digital put it:
With real-time delivery, the mere mention of having a baby, running a marathon, buying a power drill or wearing high-heeled shoes is transformed into an opportunity to serve immediate ads, expanding the target audience exponentially beyond usual targeting methods such as stated preferences through “likes” or user profiles. Facebook didn’t have to create new ads for this test and no particular advertiser has been tapped to participate — the inventory remains as is.
Privacy issues aside it looks like it’s going ahead. Facebook is currently beta testing the idea with a paltry 1% of its users. But that still amounts to a sizeable 6 million people. Not bad!
Although Facebook have been delivering ads based on keywords contained within status updates and wall posts for sometime now, it’s never been in realtime. And that’s going to scare a lot of people.
I can see the headlines already: “Facebook Embroiled in New Privacy Fiasco”. It’s just a bit Big Brother-ish but I’m betting that much of the fear will come from a lack of understanding of what happens with private information. Or perhaps I don’t know enough and should be scared!
From a marketer’s perspective it’s pure gold, with a silver lining. Imagine being able to go from partially articulated to desire to gratification in an instant! Talk about scratching the itch!
Image credit: Julien Haler on Flickr