This latest test, along with the mobile app ad unit announced last week, shows that Facebook is becoming more aggressive in regards to advertising. But as TechCrunch pointed out, now a Page with no fans could buy its way into millions of News Feeds — something that could rub brands, which have spent years and thousands of dollars building fan bases, the wrong way.
But it’s not just brands that Facebook has to consider; this is a major change for members as well. Until now, News Feeds only featured stories about friends, subscriptions, or Liked Pages. Now individuals could start seeing marketing messages from brands they never opted in to receiving.
Currently Facebook is testing this on a very small scale. Significant experimenting is required before this ad unit can be rolled out to more marketers. As with any form of advertising, it’s important not to overwhelm members with ads. The social network noted that it has limits in place — though it didn’t provide any specifics — and will be watching reactions from test partners to assess whether to push it out further.