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Social Media Trends: Is Facebook Taking Over The Digital Ad Space? Exhibit C

3rd March 2017 | Ben Lott

Here’s the final helping of eight&four’s look into how Facebook could be taking over the digital ad space. Time to decide – are Facebook ads taking over the digital space?

If you missed our previous two blogs on this topic you can find them here, Exhibit A and Exhibit B.

Exhibit C: Facebook Ads on TV

Facebook’s ad ambitions continue to expand with their latest strategy looking to incorporate ads into internet-connected TVs like Apple TV & Roku. If Facebook is able to do this, they will be taking another big step forward in moving ads away from the traditional news feed placement.

At this moment in time this is currently a limited test which is still in the very early stages but what Facebook offers that other set-top box advertisers can’t is the promise of much more targeted ads. This is because Facebook can use the same wealth of targeting data that powers the rest of its advertising network to ensure the most relevant audience members possible are being targeted.

Using IP addresses, Facebook will be able to tell that your Apple TV is in use by the same person that logs into their Facebook account from that location and will use that data to deliver relevant ads. One mishap we can foresee with this is the potential for spoiling holiday shopping. What if a targeted remarketing ad showing that present you’ve brought for your partner comes on screen while you’re watching TV with them? Big spoiler potential and not what you want the day before Christmas!

On the other hand, if Facebook were to go ahead with implementing ads across internet-connected TV’s, it would go a long way in helping them achieve their goal of bringing relevant ad experiences to people both on and off the Facebook platform. Let’s remember, Facebook itself says the news feed is saturated with ads, they need to find a new stream of ad revenue and being the first social media network to launch highly targeted TV advertising would be a major coup in such a competitive space.

For now, these ads are only being shown to users watching TV via the A+E and Tubi TV video apps. Ad formats and lengths haven’t been confirmed and there’s likely to be a long negotiation process between Facebook and the set-top box makers about exactly how the advertising will look. What we do know is this represents a major shift in strategy from Facebook, placing their advertising into a more traditional format while retaining the immense amount of user data that makes their targeting ability so powerful.

If the test proves successful, we could see a major shift in television advertising across the board. While this might be a longer term strategy than the other trends we’ve discussed this week, it may end up being the one with the most impact on digital advertising in the next few years.

There you have it, the last of our series exploring how Facebook could be taking over the digital ad space.

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