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Facebook Making Ads Much More Prevalent

The computer keyboard button written word block ads

Last week, Facebook announced a change to their algorithm that thrilled its users: obvious clickbait would be all but eradicated from their timelines. By identifying tell-tale signs, such as certain keywords and other tactics, the new algorithm filters out clickbait headlines, similar to how an email filter works, and pushes them down to the bottom of users’ timelines. Though some companies were no doubt infuriated (the reason why will BLOW YOUR MIND!), users now find they are better able to keep up with the people and companies they care about with less clutter.

This week, however, Facebook made another announcement that may infuriate users once more. The social media behemoth is taking a stand against ad blockers. However, users will still have some control over the ads they are shown. Here’s how Facebook accomplished this feat, which few other websites have done, and how you can take advantage of the change.

The Proof Is in the Pudding… Er, Coding

If you look through the coding of just about any website that displays ads, you’ll eventually find some Javascript that sticks out from the HTML and CSS that surrounds it. That Javascript is typically an indicator of advertisements. On most websites (including Facebook, before today), ads are hosted by a third party, and traces of Javascript, as well as other indicators that the content is an ad, are easy enough to find in the code. So, Facebook took control of their ads and now publish them in-house.

Doing so allows Facebook to ensure that all ads are created with just HTML code, which blends in with the organic content on the site. Ad blockers now can’t detect the difference between a review of Kitten Mittens and an ad for them.

kitten-mittens always sunny in philadelphia gif

While some ad blockers may be able to review the content and the nitty-gritty of the code to detect ads, doing so would be a serious detriment on page speed and user experience. As such, blockers are discouraged from being an impediment to their own subscribers and should just whitelist Facebook altogether.

Not All Is Lost

Facebook has shown some mercy to users. Instead of being bombarded by every ad under the sun, they are allowing users to choose their preferences. It’s advised that users actually do so, to make sure they are seeing ads that are actually relevant to them. Opting out of every advertiser won’t prevent their content from appearing on your newsfeed. Rather, you’ll get ads from all over the place, many of which you likely couldn’t care less about.

So what can you, the advertiser, do? The most important thing to remember is that your fans like you for a reason. Create content, paid and otherwise, that they want to see. Sure, some followers will block your ads, especially when this change hits and users try to block every ad in a furious flurry. Make sure you are still appealing to those users to stick with you through it all.

Also remember the channels where ad blockers have never worked — namely, mobile apps. Ramping up your advertisements for Facebook’s smartphone and tablet apps can ensure you don’t see too much of a dip in your click-through rates and other advertising metrics. Adaptation is the name of the game — and not playing is the same as losing.

How Many Eyes Will You Lose?

A recent study reported a startling statistic: 70 million Americans, and 200 million people across the globe, use some form of ad blocker. To the researchers’ surprise, it wasn’t security that was cited as the most common reason for using a blocker, but rather to avoid disruptive ads. Creating ads that blend right into newsfeeds will be your best bet to reach users as Facebook rolls out their new coding.

Worried about losing ad clicks? Don’t be. Rely on the experts at EverSpark Interactive to make sure users are still following your ads and visiting your site. Learn more about the services we offer by visiting our website or contacting us today.