Facebook Targeting Less Accurate than Previously Thought

In a Newly Published Study, it Was Found 30% of Facebook’s Interests are Not Accurate, Which Has Severe Implications for Advertising Online

When using a product or service to advertise online, marketers will want to ensure the features being used are optimised to work at their maximum efficiency. However, it can often be difficult to make sure this occurs, causing problems to emerge when wanting to target specific audiences.

One issue right now includes Facebook’s marketing initiatives; a recent study has indicated Facebook’s targeting software is approximately 30% inaccurate when matching interests to target audiences. However, it is worth noting this statistic came from a small sample study from the North Carolina State University, but was done so using participants globally.

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What this then indicates is marketers utilising Facebook to target specific individuals may actually be using the platform inefficiently. Some have pointed out this could be due to Apple’s new policies preventing tracking on iOS, which may remove the accuracy of where the interests are found.

After all, Facebook learns interests based on the activity of those who use the platform, helping to build out a targetable profile. In order to do so, the software needs to learn how to recognise the patterns, helping to build a more sustainable and optimised segment to target. Despite this, Facebook still have a reputation as the most variable tracking software, allowing them to gather information users may not even be aware they are giving away.

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All of this remains important as it may indicate marketers are not optimising their marketing strategies and spend online in the most efficient manner; this leads to a waste of resources, and a failure to reach the intended audience. Additionally, this study also showed the systems in place cannot differentiate effectively between positive and negative interactions, which again can lead to further problems if people are being marketed to without a willingness to engage. Thereby, the strategies would need to be adjusted, or else other platforms may be more open to helping marketers reach the correct audience.

Although these indicate a somewhat troublesome scenario, Facebook are still maintaining their reputation. If they can rectify these inaccuracies and ensure ads are in fact aligning with the appropriate interests, this issue can easily be resolved.

Finally, for our previous #SocialShort, click here.