Facebook Expands Audience Network Ads Beyond Users

twitter-audience-network-ads.pngFollowing the closure of its LiveRail and FBX exchanges, Facebook has expanded the capabilities of its Audience Network platform so that customers ads will now be visible on third-party apps and website to everyone who has ever visited Facebook, not just visitors who are logged into Facebook.

Previously, Facebook Audience Network could only serve ads to signed-in Facebook users, limiting its scope but also ensuring that it could determine exactly who was seeing each ad, providing it with powerful targeting and analytics tools that it could offer to third-party advertisers.

The introduction of Audience Network ads for non-logged in consumers means that Facebook has begun to leverage some of the valuable information it picks up from non-users whenever they visit sites which integrate Facebook technology, but also represents a shift to include probabalistic modelling.

The move is a challenge to Googles AdSense network, which uses similar methods to enable advertisers to target users without knowing their precise identities, and shows that Facebook continues to have big ambitions when it comes to the world of advertising.

“People want high-quality, relevant adverts that fit seamlessly into their environment, and advertisers want the same thing,” said a Facebook spokesperson in a blog post announcing the change. “Extending Facebook-powered adverts in this way helps advertisers reach people who they otherwise may not have. It also improves the quality of the adverts that people see on websites and in apps.”

The change will be rolled out over the next few months, and Facebook hasnt made it clear if this is an initiative that will be rolled out geographically, or be provided to key partners first before being made available to the whole of the Facebook Audience Network.

As part of the expansion, Facebook is also enabling people to opt out of seeing ads on apps and websites in the Audience Network, either via their Facebook settings or by clicking on the AdChoices icon in Audience Network ads. Whether people without Facebook accounts who are now being tracked by the firm will have this ability, beyond the standard cookie warning, has not been made clear.