Facebook Releases “Pages You Might Like” Non-Social Ad Units in Newsfeed/Mobile
Facebook ads have yet again become more confusing than ever. The social network has introduced a slew of ad products over the years, and it just got more confusing.
At the end of last year, Facebook announced it was testing non-social ad units in desktop newsfeeds. The ad units were labeled as “Pages You Might Like”. Unlike Sponsored Stories that display in the newsfeed and in the right side panel of Facebook, these ads are not social. They do not display a user’s friends who like page (such as “John Smith likes Apple”). Instead, they simply share a photograph for the page, the page title, and how many people like the page. Underneath the ad is the ability for a user to like the page.
It appears these ad units are out of testing, and are now displayed in the newsfeed.
Similar ad units are set to be released for the Facebook mobile app and WAP, and were tested earlier in January.
What do the new ads mean for brands? Previously, Sponsored Stories promoted likes for pages, but were only targetable to friends of a user who already likes the brand’s page. Now, brands can reach a much larger audience with this similar ad unit. It’s less social (in fact, it’s not at all!), but it increases a brand’s reach. This is great for brands who have “run their course” after running the same ads to the same people on Facebook (we all have seen them). At the same time, brands need to understand that because these ads aren’t social and don’t tie in friends on Facebook, the cost per click or action will likely be higher than what they’ve experienced with Sponsored Stories.