Facebook is rethinking its ad strategy with a focus on privacy. The social media giant is trying to re-engineer its ad targeting approach so that it can deliver custom-targeted ads to users without knowing too much information about them. The company’s ad business has been built over the years on Facebook's ability to track everything you do online.
However, there are looming regulations that will quite literally make this tracking illegal. As such, Facebook is finding itself amid a terrible situation.
Besides, Apple is expected to release several iOS updates that will make it harder for Facebook and other social media apps to track users across the board. But it seems the social media platform is looking for a way around this so it will be very interesting to see how targeted ads will be implemented with minimal customer or user data.
The new plan by Facebook is of course in its infancy stages and we have not seen a lot of details about it. But it is an indication that the social media company is planning for the future, a future where the ad-supported internet economy will be massively reshaped from what it looks like today.
Facebook feels that it is possible to deliver personalized ads to users without intruding too much on their privacy. But it’s not just Facebook that is looking at this. Even Google, a company that saw a huge surge in ad revenue the last quarter, is also looking at ways to deliver ad-supported internet service with minimal user data.
The stakes are indeed very high and the future of Facebook as an ad company will solely depend on how well it executes this plan. Big tech companies have become the focus of lawmakers in Washington over the last few years. There is a growing belief among lawmakers that these companies have had too much leeway.
There is even talk of breaking up big tech and limiting the kind of power these huge large-cap companies have. For this reason, it is expected that the tech space will enter a new era of massive government regulation, much of which will limit the way they collect and use customer data.
This is why Facebook and Google are trying to get ahead of the Washington regulation craze and adapt to what could be a very hostile business environment as far as data goes.
Some analysts feel that Facebook's latest announcement is more or less admitting defeat to upcoming privacy changes by Apple. When Apple announced that it will be bringing in new updates that make it harder for Facebook and other apps to track user data, Facebook launched a massive PR campaign against this.
The social media company, however, seems to have thrown in the towel and for good reason. More and more people are becoming conscious of how their data is being used and calls for more privacy have never been this loud. So it’s on Facebook to find new ways to run its targeted ad business while keeping user privacy intact.