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FB: The New Ad Network
This could be scary -- or it could be a new amazing new advertising platform.
Facebook is working with Zynga to place ads on Zynga's new web-gaming platform. The advertisements are based on your Facebook history, not cookies or searching history -- but a cross section of everything you do on the web and Facebook.
For a little back-story, Zynga started out on the Facebook platform running the most popular games, then grew to embrace mobile, and now is branding out on it's own -- creating a gaming platform not only for it's own systems, but for others to potentially use as well.
Facebook is mentioned in Zynga's IPO Filings
Now, in a way to monetize each of the companies web presence, millions of advertisements will be served up that are more personalized then ever before.
What can this mean for your business?
Now - as an advertiser, you can get your ads in front of people that are not browsing Facebook, but interacting with the web through one page. Game playing happens on one page -- IN -- the website, so to speak.
One of the critical notes on advertising on Facebook is that people are hopping from page to page, reading a couple of words at a time -- not staying on one page for more then a minute -- and not that has changed.
For your business - this is something to look out for.
I expect that after Zynga's test, one of two things are going to happen -- FB will become the new advertising agency, just like Google uses G+ --- but FB has 900M members who use the site 25x more frequently then G+ -- which means that FB has more ability to tailor the ads specifically for your business to the right customer at the right time.
Option two - is that privacy and public outcry causes people to logout of Facebook more often which means that only the 1000 most used websites that use FB Connect exclusively will get the benefit.
MS invested $250M in Facebook for 5%. That is now worth about $4B -- which is a good investment, but that wasn't the goal. MS invested to incorporate the MS Office Suite into email attachments and into the search results.
When was the last time you used Facebook for a regular search? Or if you did, have you noticed the BING sponsored ads on the bottom? Don't worry, no one else has either.
So when Facebook ventures off with it's own advertising platform as an extention outside of the facebook.com walls, the one who will get hurt the most is Microsoft. Microsoft should be hosting that search and combining it with information from FB to make the all empowering search.
Currently this high-level of social search happens on BING - purely in concept, considering you have to be logged into MS LIVE and FACEBOOK. Similar to Google+Social Search indeed. But when FB branches out on it's own, MS is left holding the MS LIVE and BING -- with a portion empty pockets left.
Why would FB renew with advertising agreement with MS when they can just become the next Advertising Network with Social already built in?
Look out Google. I think that FB is coming after your core.
And for those advertisers -- it can only create better, more targeted advertisements that utilize the best of FB -- but travel outside of FB walls.