The Good News: Nielsen Co. has completed study on efficacy of targeted social network ads using 800,000+ Facebook users, 14 brands. Found that in cases where Facebook homepage ad incorporates the name of a user’s friend, ad recall/awareness/purchase intent levels improved strikingly over those generated by non-”social” ad. Overall click-through rate quadruples from generic banner ad to organic impression.
The Bad News: Some ads still triggered by false positives in user news feeds, e.g., Facebook status update “Bonobos, or pygmy chimpanzees, are native to the Congo” yields ad for Bonobos brand pants, only some of which are made of ape skin.
The Problems: Software cannot compensate for multivalence of human language or extract opinion from complex syntax. User-provided information insufficient to form 100% accurate/effective ad mosaic. Social networking still dominated by non-commercial data, i.e., quotidian/creative user content.
The Solution: Since juxtaposition of brand and user’s friends elicits profitable response, micro-pay savvy users per embed of neutral or positive brand mention in wall posts, status updates and arbitrary white rectangle that appears below users’ profile pictures. Added benefit of tailoring ads to friend-cluster of individual user: chance to measure efficacy of same organic impression on cross-section of sub-demographics including People From High School To Avoid Ages 21–29 and Co-Workers Who Only Communicate Through E-mail Even Though They Sit Twelve Feet Away. Added benefit of shifting organic impressions to center and left (or “important”) columns of Facebook layout: possible gain in high-receptive eyeball scannage.
The Potential Solution Reinforcement: Have user display profile picture that provokes greater than 70% rate of involuntary neurocorrelation to trusted authority for optimal message-prefrontal cortex bonding.
The Target Projection: 350 bilingual education programs (Spanish/Adspeak) in U.S. 2012 federal education budget.