Facebook ads are giving me a complex

28 10 2008

I don’t get it. I thought Facebook Ads are supposed to be targeted ads. Meaning – they display ads that are of interest, or at minimum, of relevance to me.

Instead, my profile page is continually bombarded with ads like “Rachel Ray’s New Diet”, “Lose 3 Dress Sizes” and “Oprah’s Diet Challenge”.

I’m starting to get a complex here.

Like Facebook is trying to tell me something.

I’m being proactive and using the thumbs up / thumbs down feature below each ad as a way to tell Facebook these ads aren’t relevant to me.

But they still keep showing up.

It’s not that I mind seeing ads on my Facebook profile. I accept that in return for using their service, I will see ads on a regular basis.

But when I vote an ad down, and Facebook takes the time to ask me why, they should really listen to my reason and act on it.

I wonder if the issue is not enough companies are submitting ads on Facebook. And since Facebook has most likely promised these companies a certain number of impressions, my preferences go out the window.

I did a little Googling and I’m certainly not the only one to complain about this advertising spam. (See here and here.)

And while TechCrunch recently asked if Facebook ads are going to zero, eMarketer is predicting growth in overall online ad spend from $24.5 billion in 2008 to $28.5 billion in 2009. Well the way it’s going, I don’t see Facebook Ads as driving this projected growth. If you have any stats on this, please share via the comments section below.

So back to me for a minute. It must be something in my profile…somewhere on my info page or on my wall that is triggering these ads to display. Perhaps Facebook is expressing concern that I’ve listed “baking brownies and chocolate chip cookies” as some of my favourite activities.

Thanks Facebook. I guess you, Rachel Ray and Oprah are all looking out for me.

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9 responses

28 10 2008
Veronica Giggey

I get the same ads all the time! I also get FB telling me how the girls from the Hills keep their weight off with the Acai Berry diet. My hypothesis…FB scans the pictures in my profile to determine my BMI and figures I need some help.

28 10 2008
melgallant

LOL – ok so I’m not the only one. It’s freaking me out. ๐Ÿ˜‰

28 10 2008
phdinparenting

It is because you are female. Period. There seems to be an assumption among advertisers that all women are self-conscious about their body.

28 10 2008
WTL

I’ve seen those ads, but I get business or financial related ads mostly. Now, if there were ads for gadgets, I’d be doomed. ๐Ÿ˜‰

So much for targeting working.

Perhaps you need to contact Facebook and let them know that the ads are making you crazy.

29 10 2008
melgallant

phdinparenting: you’re so right. it’s a reflection of the society we live in. too bad.

wtl: i’ll contact Facebook but i have my doubts it will help. good exercise to see if it does though. ๐Ÿ˜‰

29 10 2008
Wendy

Yeah, I get diet ads too. Puzzled me, but I didn’t know they were mean’t to be targeted.

Perhaps if I list some unusual interests they will change? I wonder who else pays to advertise on facebook.

29 10 2008
Wendy

It worked . . . well sort of.
One of the diet ads changed to a credit report offer!

31 10 2008
Ingrid

Yes, dieting ads are targeted towards my also! I did click on one to follow it and it offered a free sample…but asked for a cc and you would have to pay $XX for shipping and contact them to stop shipping the monthly product.

I have nothing listing in my profile.

31 10 2008
melgallant

I wonder if the ads simply target women, no matter what you have listed on your profile.

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