Facebook Ads Are Not AdSense

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Branding versus lead generation, originally uploaded by bigmick.

TechCrunch, Jeremiah Profy , NY Times and others are all talking about Facebooks new advertising platform announced at AdTech.

Sounds ok. Sounds expected. Nothing fancy. Will probably generate lots of money. But it’s definitely no AdSense.

Fan-sumers and the model they are suggesting is ok for promoting an existing brand, but that’s a small and probably dying corporate communication goal.

AdSense is about lead generation, and that commands a significantly higher margin then branding. What is one customer increasing their love of me as a product worth? Don’t know. Not much. What is one potential customer who is looking for a solution that I sell worth? A lot.

Fan-sumers from Facebook also misses the point that the value networks is the established trust of information when I need it. i.e. I want to buy a new laptop and want to know what to get. Let me ask my network of geeky friends because I trust them….

OK, maybe fansumering can do this by popping up and saying “Phil just bought a Sony Vaio” and then I say, ‘Wowzers, I need a new laptop and if Phil got one then it must be good!’.

That relies on a gentle hand which lets the consumer control the message, the audience and the timing. This is something that corporate marketing execs are never comfortable with.

Anyway, my gut instinct says they’ll make some money since they’ve got scale, but it could incur a slow revolt and it’s never going to be the money making machine like AdSense.

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