If you’re an avid user of the social networking website Facebook, you’ll probably have noticed the ads that run on the website. Similar to Google Adwords in many regards, Facebook ads differ from Google ads in the sense that you can be really specific with your target audience by using the data contained with Facebook’s database.
For example, if you want to target your ads for students based in London, who are fans of Oasis, you have that option. Perfect if you’re selling Oasis tickets for a student gig in London.
However, the specific nature of the targeting system means that the number of people who see the ads can be very small, and it can also be subject to the skill of the person generating the filter.
A personal injury company made the mistake this week of asking a gym owner in Southampton if he’d had an accident recently and whether he wanted to sue his employer, himself. The man, Dave Jones, saw the ad while he was using one of the Facebook apps on the website.
This video on the BBC website shows Dave Jones explaining the incident, and how he was disgusted to learn of companies such as this who were tempting people with cash windfalls for suing their employers.
The moral of this story is that if you’re creating targeted ads on Facebook, you need to be very careful with the variables or you could wind up missing your target audience by a very wide mark.