Facebook launches new advertisement platform
Facebook wants to use the knowledge and information it has gathered from its 1.3 billion users to place more targeted advertisements on websites outside of the social network. With this new platform, Facebook increases the competition with Google.
The advertisement platform, Atlas, gives advertisers the possibility to target advertisements on thousands of websites (Atlas Solutions, 2014). This behavioral advertising, which is one form of targeted advertising, is the practice of collecting data about an individual’s online activities for use in selecting which advertisement to display (McDonald and Cranor, 2010). Mobile apps will also be capable to place the advertisements and Facebook’s daughter Instagram will play an important role in the development of the advertisement program.
Since the data of smartphones and tablets is all collected, Facebook is able to offer advertisers a better targeted form of advertisement on specific user groups. Additionally, Facebook will be able to generate more revenue when it finds enough partners to participate in the new advertisement program.
With Atlas, Facebook is competing with Yahoo, but mainly with Google, a company that also possesses an enormous amount of data of its users. Facebook might even have a slight advantage because it forces users to use their own name. Behavioral advertising creates profiles for Internet users based on a variety of different data types and inferences drawn from those data. Next to that, Facebook is also able to follow the online activity of its users on mobile platforms.
One important thing to take in account, however, is the privacy aspect. A Big Brother perception is the side effect of such precision, says analyst Rebecca Lieb from the Altimeter Group (Goel, 2014). People are concerned that you know them. Facebook however states that it never passes the identity of users to advertisers. Advertisers can for example target their advertisements on Dutch 18-year old who like the series Breaking Bad, but they can’t see who that are precisely (NU.nl, 2014).
Atlas Solutions, (2014). Meet the new Atlas. [online] Available at: http://atlassolutions.com/2014/09/29/meet-the-new-atlas/ [Accessed 29 Sep. 2014].
Goel, V. (2014). With New Ad Platform, Facebook Opens Gates to Its Vault of User Data. [online] Nytimes.com. Available at: http://www.nytimes.com/2014/09/29/business/with-new-ad-platform-facebook-opens-the-gates-to-its-vault-of-consumer-data.html?smid=nytcore-ipad-share&smprod=nytcore-ipad&_r=0 [Accessed 29 Sep. 2014].
McDonald, A. and Cranor, L. (2010). Americans’ attitudes about internet behavioral advertising practices. pp.63–72.
NU.nl, (2014). Facebook start uitrol nauwkeuriger advertentieplatform. [online] Available at: http://www.nu.nl/internet/3889818/facebook-start-uitrol-nauwkeuriger-advertentieplatform.html [Accessed 29 Sep. 2014].