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Ad it up

Adriene Hill Aug 31, 2012

Social networking sites are still trying to figure out exactly how to make money from us.  How to get ads in front of us that we’ll actually click.  How to share our data with marketers without winding up in trouble. So far, we’ve all been way more excited to comment on our friend’s vacation pictures than clicking an ad for mirror-ball-pants. All Things D reports Facebook and Twitter are trying to change that.  
In Facebook’s case:  

It will start letting marketers find prospects on the social network by using personal information like phone numbers and email addresses.
The catch: In order for a company to track a Facebook user using any of that data, the Facebook user has to have already given the company that data on their own.
Or to put it another way: Facebook is letting marketers hunt down existing customers on the site.

Twitter is remaking its ad strategy.  A few changes:

*Twitter is effectively providing advertisers access to all of its 140 million users, via targeted “Promoted Tweet” ads.
*Twitter is also making it cheaper, at least potentially, to reach those 140 million users.

And, they are adding Enhanced interest targeting:

This is what’s going to allow advertisers to hawk their stuff more broadly on Twitter, and it’s what Twitter was referring to earlier this summer, when we got our hands on their ad pitch deck. The gist: Now advertisers can try targeting some 350 “interest categories,” as well as users who share “similar interests” with a specific Twitter account.

I wonder how many ads a single human brain can process in a day before exploding (or learning to ignore all of them)?  At what point in our already ad-saturated lives does the next ad simply stop mattering?

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