Hyper-targeting isn’t new. Neither is intrusive media.
But a combination of the two… could be incredibly effective. Just imagine if FaceBook had ads like this Apple Skyscraper/Banner ad:
Watch the fully animated ad over at The Unofficial Apple Weblog — it’s quite obviously an intrusive ad (in a good way).
For those unfamiliar with the term, intrusive basically equals sound: radio or television, and, to a degree, animated banner ads. It’s intrusive because you can’t close your ears and the ads interrupt something else that you are doing, like listening to music or watching TV or reading the online version of the NYT.
Yet when it comes to radio and television, selecting the show or station is as targeted as it gets. That’s why they call it mass media and broadcasting. Direct mail, on the other hand, can be targeted by gender, age, income, buying activities, interests, profession, etc — yet still manages to get dumped in the trash unopened and un-looked at a shocking percentage of the time.
Which brings us back to the target-ability of Facebook ads. Want to only show your ads to mothers of 3 kids between the ages of 32–38 who live on the west side of Newport, RI? No sweat. Want to make sure those same mothers of three actually LOOK at your ad? Houston we have a problem.
As of now, FaceBook ads are mostly static and entirely without sound. There also kind of, um, spammy. Without motion or sound to attract members’ attention, most ads end up looking like the example to the left.
But banner ads/online space ads don’t have to be that way, as the recent Apple ad proves. Nor does FaceBook have to give up editorial control on what kind of ads get run. Just like many fashion magazines already do, FaceBook could require ads to meet a certain non-annoying or cool threshold.
Flash driven ads with sound that had a high creative threshold could prove to be the best of both worlds. You’d get targeted ads that are also intrusive enough to seduce FaceBook viewers away from their newsfeeds long enough to watch and click through.
What do you think?