During its third quarter earnings call, social media behemoth Facebook has posted impressive growth numbers both in terms of revenue and daily user count. But, if you remember, the company had then shared that the platform has unfortunately reached maximum ad load capacity. What this meant was that Facebook was completely out of places in the news feed to show ads to its user and generate revenue.
Well, it seems the social media giant has suddenly dug really deep and discovered that they still have one avenue left unexplored. Do you remember Facebook also has a feature called Groups? This feature enables the users to create a public, private or secret groups which can be used to chit chat, plan or collaborate. Public(Open) groups are discoverable and can be joined by anyone, the private(closed) ones are searchable and you can request to join them whereas secret ones are not searchable and require someone in the group to invite you.
Now that we’ve refreshed our knowledge of groups on Facebook, this is the new avenue where the company is currently testing its adverts. Since the main news feed is cluttered with fake news, which the company claims amount for just 1%, it is most likely planning to show ads in between posts on a group you’ve joined the social network. In the image attached above, the banner displayed atop the group page reads:
People may start seeing adverts in this group. Adverts are based on each member’s interests and on topics related to this group.
Since the details of the same are a bit scarce, we’ve contacted Facebook to learn more about the company’s efforts towards expanding the scope of showing ads on the platform. The maximum ad load on the platform is expected to drag down revenue for the next quarter, CFO David Wehner mentioned during a conference call with investors.
Due to the same, Facebook is aggressively pushing forward with its live video and Snapchat cloning efforts. While the company has already set up its live video platform as a robust entity of the platform, it could be another avenue for ad revenue generation in the coming months.
The company is launching exclusive new apps, including desktop gaming platform Gameroom and Snapchat clone Flash, to possibly set up more avenues for revenue generation. It is currently also said to be testing a ‘job listing’ feature which could be paid and require page managers to fess up money to advertise their openings on the platform.
[UPDATE/1:45 p.m] : In a statement received by The Tech Portal, a Facebook spokesperson confirms the development and says,
We have started to test delivering ads to people in Facebook Groups, and will be evaluating the response before determining how we will move forward.
The spokesperson further mentions that ads will be served to group member in the feed environment — synonymous to those appearing in the news feed. The adverts will be displayed on both mobile and desktop platforms. Facebook is running this test to gauge the usefulness of displaying ads in the group environment. They’re closely evaluating the performance and plan to roll out the same globally if the ads are well-received by the community.