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Facebook: The Missing Manual by E. A. Vander Veer

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Chapter 11. Advertising on Facebook

In Facebook's early days, "advertising" meant college students looking to sell their old textbooks or find new roommates. But now that Facebook is open to the public and has several million members, things have changed. Facebook's ability to comb through millions of personal details at a practically unheard-of level of granularity ("Show me all the conservative male college students who live in Portland, have mobile phones, and enjoy watching vintage Bugs Bunny reruns") and tap directly into each member's circle of friends is an advertiser's dream come true.

These days, big companies with big ad budgets are placing ads on Facebook. As the site has grown, marketing strategies have changed, too, from simple network-targeted banner ads to social ads, which mine members' personal details and Friend Lists to hawk products. This chapter explores your options for advertising on Facebook, which range from free to affordable to don't even think about it.

Taking Polls

A Facebook poll is a lot like its real-world counterpart: It's a question you can pay to display in certain Facebook members' news feeds. Because Facebook gives you detailed feedback—not just the answers people picked, but other useful information, too, such as what percentage of males took your poll—polls are a relatively inexpensive way to "feel out" a group of members, which you probably want to do if you're considering dropping a wad of cash on social ads (Social Ads (Targeted Announcements) ...

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