Brands and marketers have been using Facebook ads for a long time now, largely because of just how targeted they can be. Anyone who has created an ad campaign on the site knows that you can target ads based on virtually anything you can imagine. Since consumers regularly provide Facebook with a constantly updated source of information about themselves, it is no surprise that the social network can use that to display ads that they will find very interesting.
With the recent scandals, and the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) going into effect in Europe, things are likely going to change.
First, Facebook has already confirmed that they are phasing out all third-party targeting capabilities. This includes both public and private information that they have available. This accounts for about half the information they have, which is obviously very significant.
Advertisers will no longer be able to take advantage of the data that was under the ‘Partner Categories By Request’ so that will result in some limitations.
While Facebook still has a lot to offer to brands and marketers, it is clear that the end result will have to be fewer targeting options. Most marketers seem to still be confident that Facebook will be able to provide a good ROI for their ads, but the real data won’t be available for at least a few months.