Sunday, February 03, 2008

When did I Endorse a Business on Facebook in their Ad?

I came across two Ads with friend's pictures on Facebook Sponsored Ads in the past 2 days.

Hmm, Sumit seems to have added Blackjack App, which appears like a notification, but actually its an ad for Scramble Facebook App.

Still its all in the realm of Facebook App world right?

Look, what I saw just now? Brett's picture for a Blockbuster signup as a notification of their Movie Clique App. Brett may approve of a notification of his app usage, does it mean he endorses Blockbuster as a brand and signing up for a paid membership, I am not sure?

Now this is getting interesting!!!

In the normal web world, no company would create an ad with your picture without your explicit permission for an ad of their product just because they found you using one of their products!

I am curious to learn more on the user's involvement in these cases, but want to learn of similar such campaigns by other businesses and user views.

The promise of social media marketing, particularly facebook is to allow user's adoption of a product as endorsement of the brand to their social graph. But there were people who objected to Facebook Beacon. Wonder who else is using the power of such user's implicit endorsements?


Jonathan Trenn said...

This is just a start unless people seek out to end it early. Unlike Beacon, this is something that one can't opt out of.

Perhaps one way to stop it - and I doubt this would work - is to go after the companies that are actually using the ads. Meaning the Blockbusters, etc.

But yes, people are now appearing in ads without their prior knowledge or approval. It's the antithesis of permission marketing.

techwag said...

The era of "on your face" marketing was replaced by "permission marketing" for a good reason. And that was to avoid the repulsion the "on your face" marketing provoked. Users got tired of it, they learnt how to avoid it and never believed a word of it.

Now Facebook is trying "implicit permission" marketing, trying to provoke a response from my friends by showing my endorsement of a product I never even tried. If this continues the way it is, this will kill "permission marketing" because users will learn to avoid it and would not believe the ad.

I dont like the way this is implemented today. No wonder beacon experienced such a backlash. After having experienced how "I was used" (thanks Sudha for pointing out), I am now sure this will not work the way it is. It will evolve or it will die a painful death. I have ideas on how it can be improved, but I am sure so do many others. But today, I was pissed..