Facebook Introduces Targeted RTB Ads within the News Feed

In a move that many saw coming, Facebook has announced its plans to start allowing real-time, biddable, targeted ads within the news feed; a move welcomed by many marketers. The News Feed is where people spend the most amount of time than any other part of Facebook. Up until this point, advertisers have been relegated to the right side of the page where ads certainly attract less attention. Advertisers have long known that click through rate on Facebook ads pales in comparison against the click through rates of other major search engines. The move to include the ads within the news feed will improve ads’ visibility and improve click through rates. Some experts believe that the move to include ads within the news Feed will increase the ads response rate by 10 to 50 times that of right rail ads. Facebook is also expecting that the targeted ads within the News Feeds should improve the relevancy of ads for people.

As ad engagement rates increase and relevancy improves, advertisers are expected to bid more to get into a users’ News Feed therefore increasing the cost per click.

Additionally, Facebook may be able to circumvent the remarketing limitation of cookie-based targeting by allowing for the mapping of users’ actions back to their Facebook IDs – allowing for cross device remarketing.

The move to include targeted, RTB ads within the News Feed is also viewed as critical to the future success of Facebook as the ads in the news feeds would be visible to those on mobile devices. About two-thirds of Facebook users accessed the site via mobile devices in December.

Ads will be able to be targeted to users by browsing interests via the Facebook Exchange (FBX) platform. At the moment, ads within the News Feed are only served on desktop devices in a closed Alpha, expected to be expanded to additional advertisers in the coming months.

Ads within the News Feed are also said to be likable and sharable allowing the ability to introduce a viral aspect to Facebook advertising.