Facebook is Taking on Transparency Concerns with an Updated Ads Library: Here’s Everything You Need to Know
What's Going On?
Facebook is launching a new Ads Library that will house detailed information for all active ads (not just those relating to politics) along with any ads published within the last 7 years. Previously, this information was only visible on a Page's Info and Ads section. There, users could find basic information on how much was spent to run an ad, how many impressions it received, and who saw the ad.
With the introduction of the Ads Library (previously known as the Ads Archive), however, you'll now be able to find all this information and much more in one centralized location. According to Facebook’s blog post, each ad will be archived with the following new information:
- Page creation date, previous Page merges, and name changes.
- Primary country location of Page managers (provided the Page has a large audience, or runs ads related to politics or issues in select countries).
- Advertiser spend information for ads related to politics or issues where the Ad Library Report is currently available. This includes all-time spend and spend over the last week, which was previously only available in the Ad Library Report.
In that same post, FB also announced changes to the ad search function —allowing users to more easily find ads published on the platform —a new page transparency section, and open access to Facebook's Ad Library API so that those outside the company can better view and analyze ad information.
Why Should I Care?
We all know that Facebook has been in the doghouse recently when it comes to concerns over the dissemination of inaccurate information (trying saying that five times fast) and potential election meddling. Facebook's shares slipped heavily last year following reports of investigations into the Cambridge Analytica scandal, and as public perception continues to take a dive, some advertisers are looking elsewhere to spend their ad bucks.
According to a recent report, "retail marketers already spend 14% of their digital ad spend dollars with Amazon, and half of them are planning to spend more this coming year. Of that increase, 29% are shifting dollars from Google, and 34% are shifting dollars from Facebook and/or Instagram."
While there are certainly other factors at play in marketers' decision to pull ad spend from Facebook in favor of Amazon, it does point to an overall dissatisfaction with the current status quo that has previously placed Facebook and Google at the front of the pack. In the coming year, we'll see more emphasis on Amazon as a powerhouse for digital advertising (but that's a story for another day).
The truth is, Facebook still rules the roost, and it's still an essential marketing platform (despite what you may hear from certain alarmists). However, winning back public trust will be a crucial step in keeping its grip on the digital marketing sphere, and it's clear that the social media giant is ready to take on that challenge.
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