Meta advertising: how removal of targeting options affects PPC
Meta, formerly known as Facebook, announced on 9th December 2021 that it will be removing specified detailed targeting options relating to sensitive topics from its Ads API (application programming interface).
Mark Zuckerberg, CEO of this global social media platform, announced the rebranding and new corporate name of the company in late October 2021.
Motivating the change as a move towards fashioning the next generation of digital interactivity coined the metaverse, Zuckerberg stated that it is “time for us to adopt a new company brand to encompass everything that we do”.
He went on to say: “From now on, we’re going to be metaverse first, not Facebook first.”
Many, however, saw this change as an ill-disguised attempt at redefining the company’s public image after much-talked-about scandals such as Russian interference in the 2016 US elections and the privacy data debacle in 2018.
Despite these exposures, an estimated three billion people still use Facebook, which remains the name of the social media app regardless of the corporate name change.
For this reason, marketing experts regard Facebook as an ideal gateway and one of the prominent social media platforms for pay-per-click (PPC) advertising campaigns.
The latest available statistics indicate that Facebook’s advertising revenue totalled approximately $28.2bn in Q3 2021.
The social media platform’s advertising revenue for 2020 was $84.2bn.
When asked about the exact nature of PPC, content marketing professionals explained that it is a virtual or digital advertising initiative that aims to increase website traffic and connection with potential customers.
They went on to emphasise the cost-effectiveness of this model as advertisers only pay internet publishers when users click on their ads.
Thus, Meta’s decision to deprecate and remove detailed targeting options that can be perceived as offensive will have a direct impact on existing advertising campaigns.
The tech giant justified this decision by stating that it wants to prevent advertisers from exploiting targeting options to send alternative, sensitive or offensive messages.
Meta expanded and said that as from 19th January 2022, it will be removing targeting options related to health causes, race, ethnicities, political affiliations, religion, and sexual orientations.
The company referenced examples such as ‘lung cancer awareness’, ‘World Diabetes Day’, ‘same-sex marriage’, ‘LGBT culture’, ‘Catholic Church’, and politically driven phrases.
In the announcement, Meta stated that it believes that this gives advertisers ample opportunity to develop fresh material or make the necessary amendments.
It further indicated that it will allow ad sets and campaigns to deliver current content until 17th March 2022.
In the mentioned announcement, Meta advised that its advertising partners attain and evaluate the list of the deprecated terms to adapt their content and ensure that target audiences are not affected.
In light of these changes, industry experts recommend that Facebook advertisers do not rely on the listed targeting options or any other potentially sensitive topics.
These experts highly recommend that brand advertising campaigns be managed by professional content marketing agents to avoid pitfalls as these professionals stay abreast of industry changes and updates.