facebook adsIn the past year, Facebook has undergone a lot of changes. The company went public in May of last year, and since then has been tweaking, changing, and upgrading its tools and offerings to both users and businesses. The added pressure from Wall Street seems to be producing some great results for the company. Once again Facebook has made changes to its advertising system, ones that businesses and agencies will be pleased with.

Better Ad Targeting Targets Consumers’ Habits

One of the most beneficial aspects of advertising online is the ability to target your ads to relevant audiences more likely to follow through and become conversions. Facebook just made their targeting easier and more effective. According to Todd Wasserman for Mashable last night, “Facebook will now be able to target some ads based on your offline shopping habits.”

How did Facebook manage this? Quite simply, they’ve managed to make deals with some big data mining firms. These data mining firms will supply info about consumers’ offline shopping and purchases to Facebook, especially the ones through store loyalty programs. Todd adds that, “Businesses of all sizes will now be able to target categories like “soda drinkers” or “auto-intenders.”

This is definitely a shift into much better ads for Facebook. Businesses and agencies alike have a lot to gain from these changes. The ability to better target and reach the right online consumers is the most important part of advertising online and Facebook just made the whole ordeal a bit easier. They didn’t stop with this change, either.

Additional Improvements to Facebook’s Ads

Brian Womack reports late last night For Bloomberg that Facebook “is pushing into a business that lets marketers buy advertisements in real time on the basis of a member’s Web-browsing habits.” Yep, in real time. Facebook is titling this new feature in its ad offerings as Facebook Exchange.

This means that Facebook is in a sense directly competing with Google and Yahoo now. The ads that will be purchasable in Facebook Exchange allows businesses and agencies to target them to people “based on the websites they visit.” Very similar to the way Google AdWords and other services in use for years have worked.

This move is looking to be one of Facebook’s primary revenue drivers in the future. They have plans to expand the Facebook Exchange into Asia and Latin America, and one would assume the rest of the world in the future. Take a look at their own blog post for even more info.

Significant Changes

This is a fairly big deal for Facebook and for businesses and agencies working online. Making it easier to target and advertise on a platform that has the potential to reach over a billion users makes for quite a tempting proposition for agencies and businesses looking to expand online.

Facebook providing advertising in this manner has the chance to really set its stock on the upswing for quite a while. If they can back up these new ad features with strong analytics and proof of ROI, you can bet advertisers, businesses, and agencies will flock to the social media giant.

What do you think about the new advertising changes at Facebook?