Google and Facebook danced this weekend! Each making moves that in step with the other. The question is, should we be looking at this weekend as a monument in internet advertising, or are we facing an inevitable week of hype?
Facebook Targets But Is There Intent?
I just heard about the release of the first wave of Facebook’s highly rumored next generation ad systems over at Valleywag, but how “next gen” is it really?
The conversation seems to be focused on whether or not the similarities in the Facebook ad engine rival those of Google’s Adwords. Of course they do not yet rival Adwords, but this system was just launched and I for one am very bullish about the prospects of it.
So far a great deal of commentary has focused on the notion of intent. As we all know the premise on which Adwords was built on was if someone enters of query into Google search, we know that that something is of interest to them. But does that mean that they are ready to buy?
If someone Google’s Britney Spears, there is a wide variety of items that someone could be looking for in relation to Britney Spears, so if someone on Facebook claims that they are a fan of Britney Spears, are they any less intent on making a purchase?
The conversation should migrate towards the notion of active intent. The question is what is the difference in the mindset of someone searching for Britney Spears and one who has labeled themselves as a fan?
Another important element of the Facebook ad system is the ability to target demographic and geographic information (as well as a few other factors). While Google has been able to get to this point (to a certain degree) after many years, Facebook is starting out with all of this information. Sure, Facebook will need to refine their ability to target active intent, but I would say they have other abilities that Google still does not have.
I see the seed of something great here. I cannot predict how this will play out, as it is up to Facebook how they evolve this system, but they are certainly on the right track.
Google Starts To Feed Facebook
Google has finally launched a Facebook application. The official statement reads,
While this news was not as apocalyptic as the new Facebook Flyers, I find the fact that these two things happened on the same weekend interesting.
My feeling is that we will begin to see a lot more rivalry between these two companies.