Facebook Angst 1

When everyone is such an open book, how does advertising tread lightly through an emotional mine field?

You knew it would happen. The day all your “cool” friends from back in the day discover Facebook and actually jump on board. Now what?

If you’re smart, you won’t become a different person or go back in time, but keep being true to whatever is right about you now and keep building on what is great about your life.

There is something about Facebook that forces you to ask yourself the big question, “am I who I hoped I would be by now?”

What has this to do with marketing online? Hmmm. I’m not sure, except to say that everyone faces that same angst. It’s why many never get started on Facebook in the first place, isn’t it? That and having an ex who is super-psycho or stepped all over your heart, or maybe it was friends who were utter jerks in your past life. The truth is, however, that marketers should be asking these questions along with the users who love sharing with family and friends one moment, and are being embarrassed by them via Facebook the next. How does all that uncertainty play out when considered by ad impressions? This is still a largely unasked question in social media: “how does the prospect feel about themselves or their lives when viewing my ads?”

This is a good reason why targeting ads is the most crucial part of Facebook advertising, and will ultimately decide the fortunes of any campaign on Facebook, as well as how people form impressions about your product while doing their more personal, intimate lives (albeit via their Facebook page).

Unlike search engine marketing, which is clinically neutral, Facebook is tainted with emotions, intimate memories, nostalgia, mortification and even resentment and depression, for many. How stable is a campaign on Facebook that can’t focus on positive objects of relevance? Probably not very. And conversely, the reverse could be said of campaigns that strategically seek out to be the ray of hope in a Facebook surfer’s cloudy day by associating with synonyms for negative conditions that the product or service might have anecdotal relation to. Understanding how Facebook ads and interactive applications interact with mood may yet prove to be the most important scientific study of the 2010’s, and one more opportunity for marketing to become truly more human.

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Mark BrimmMark Brimm is Founder and Editor-in-Chief at Marcana.com and is author of AdWords University: The Complete Guide to AdWords and other previous related books on search marketing. He is currently working on a forthcoming book on social media strategy.

Mark consults on SEO & SEM, general web marketing and social media at Interface Communications Group where he is Partner and Director of Digital Marketing. Some of his specialties include SEO (search engine optimization), social media optimization (SMO), as well as PR campaign concepts, marketing plans and general web marketing related project management. Mark is married and currently resides in Houston, TX.

About Mark Brimm

Mark Brimm is President of 123interface.com, the Founder of Marcana.com, and runs a personal blog on social media, marketing and entrepreneurship at MarkBrimm.com. He also runs a blog on SEO & SEM at SEMinsider.com.