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Facebook ads. Are they useful?

Cons of Facebook advertising

Facebook advertising, pros and cons for companies and users

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Facebook ads have many cons for the end user. That could affect the company that pays the ads.

When we talk about Facebook ads, a lot of people say that they work well for Facebook. They are beneficial for small firms too, sometimes. But it seems that nobody talks about if they are good or not for the users.

Pros of Facebook advertising. Facebook revenue

Ads are good for Facebook, no doubt about it. It is its primary source of income. It grows fast. It has a direct repercussion in the company evolution in the stock market.

Pros of Facebook advertising. Companies

For announcers, it is a useful tool. People who want to sell products and services can use Facebook with no complications. It is especially suitable for small firms. They can reach small groups of potential consumers at a low cost. They also have a lot of information about the user.

Cons of Facebook. Users, the end consumer

Are Facebook ads useful for the users, for the people who receive that advertising? Here I have grave doubts:

- Ads make it possible to use Facebook for free. Without advertising, Facebook would need to charge its users.

But I am not sure that is an advantage. When things are free, they are usually undervalued, and used in the wrong way. A lot of people say that they spend more time on Facebook than they should. We are all sucked into it. It has an addictive effect. On the other side, when we pay for a service, that negative component is not that relevant.

- Advertising lets us discover products and services. The user can find out new things that he might not even know existed. That is the case in any advertising, but it is especially relevant in Facebook ads. The system makes possible small groups and unique tastes. Advertisers can center the efforts in small segments. So, the user can receive information about things that do not appear in larger media. That includes products and services.

The discovery possibility exists, but I am not sure if Facebook uses it in a great way. All the time we are the target of advertising of products that we have no interest. We have no relation with that product, and they repeat them many, many times.

- Users confuse advertising and information, many times. Facebook has a precise place for the ads, but firms can put commercial information in the news feed too. That happens in a context that we can consider personal information.

- We have many creative limitations. I cannot see examples of advertising attractive, stimulating and innovative in Facebook. In other media, we have beautiful art direction and unusual and innovative marketing strategies. That connects with us in a profound way. It transmits emotions and let us feel identified and linked to other people. Like in any field, the great pieces are a minority, but there are a lot of quality ads in traditional media. I could not find that on Facebook.

Conclusion

Ads in Facebook are useful for Facebook and for companies that put ads there. It seems that everybody forgets the user, the people that receive the ads.

Facebook ads are an effective way to reach small defined segments. But, the final experience of the user has to improve. Facebook ads have too many cons. In that context, Facebook will not be useful for the advertiser either.


I have different posts related to different aspects of online advertising:

Online advertising. Facebook and Google
Online vrs traditional advertising. Infographic
Facebook ads. Are they useful?

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