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Facebook Ads Are Awesome — Here’s Why

September 26, 2010

Image representing Facebook as depicted in Cru...

Image via CrunchBase

If you use Facebook, you know that Facebook ads are different than ads on other websites.  On Facebook, users can get rid of ads that they don’t like; on other websites, users are stuck with whatever ad loads first.

The difference is that Facebook includes an “x” button in the top right corner of each ad.  If you don’t like an ad for any reason, you can click the x.  After you click it, a menu takes the ads place and asks why you didn’t like the ad.   You can choose that the ad is uninteresting, misleading, offensive, repetitive, or other.  Regardless of the reason, you can always get rid of ads you don’t like.

The first reason this is a good idea is that inevitably some ads will be offensive to users.  If an ad is offensive enough, it will cause users to leave the page.  This actually happened to me today.  I was on a site with an ad that I didn’t like, so I refreshed the page.  Unfortunately, it didn’t go away, so I refreshed again.  And then again and again and again, literally refreshing the page fifteen times before I decided to leave the site.  This isn’t good for websites, for advertisers, or for users.

The second reason this is a good idea is that it allows users to get rid of uninteresting and repetitive ads.  Users know which ads they want to look at and which ones they don’t.  By giving them the ability to edit their ad selection, Facebook increases the likelihood of getting an interesting ad in front of users.  Without giving people this option, websites depend on magically determining what ads people want to see.  Sometimes they get it right, but more often they don’t.  By doing it the Facebook way, websites could easily increase the number of times they get it right.

For some reason, Facebook is the only site that gives users the option of editing the ads they see (at least that I know of).  If an ad is offensive or annoying, users should be able to delete it.  If an ad is uninteresting, then it’s just taking up space and not doing anyone any good.  By allowing users to get rid of ads they don’t like, websites win, users win, and advertisers win.  It’s really time for other companies to catch up.

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From → Marketing Tips

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