Facebook trials Exchange-delivered ads on News Feed to boost ad targeting

Facebook is trialling the introduction of Exchange-delivered ads to its News Feed on desktops as it looks to increase ad-targeting opportunities on the platform.

The social network launched Facebook Exchange (FBX) last June, letting advertisers buy inventory in real time with the ability to target and retarget specific audiences.

Tonight it is launching a small alpha test to let advertisers run Facebook Exchange ads within the NewsFeed on desktop, rather than only on the right-hand side of the page on the social network.

This means they can run Page post link ads across the NewsFeed, which can direct fans to specific landing pages for brands looking to drive direct response conversions.

It is working with several demand side platforms (DSPs) on the alpha test, including MediaMath, Nanigans and Tellpart, before expanding the format to other DSPs and advertisers.

In a blog post it said: "Allowing advertisers to reach people in News Feed is important because people spend more time in News Feed than any other part of Facebook. We also believe that ads delivered through FBX will create more relevant ads for people. Introducing Facebook Exchange in Desktop News Feed will not change the number of ads people see in their News Feeds."

Facebook has not yet broken out the revenue it generates from FBX but it had served nearly 1 billion impressions daily by December last year and claims click-through conversion rates are high while cost per acquisition remains low.

BSkyB was among one of the first brands to start using FBX, and will consider increasing its own spend in the real-time-bidding display space if Facebook's Exchange continues on a strong growth trajectory.

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