Inside Facebook is reporting on a new Facebook Ads ad unit. The new facebook ad unit is an extension of the homepage engagement ads it has been running for large brands. The homepage engagement ads it has been running was the following 6 ad units; Facebook Event Ad, Facebook Video Ad, Facebook Gifts Ad, Facebook Page Ad, Facebook Website Ad, Facebook House Ad (as explained here).
Now there is a big difference between the new Facebook Direct Response Home Page Ad Unit & the homepage engagement ads mentioned above. In all the older engagement ads – the user was taken off the facebook homepage and directed to an inside page on facebook.com or to an external website. The new Facebook Lead Generation Ad Unit has the facebook user complete the facebook advertisers lead generation form on the Facebook.com homepage. This means facebook collects the form contents and passes them over to the advertiser. I’m guessing that this is charged on a CPL (cost-per-lead) – so advertisers will know exactly how much they will pay for each completed direct response form.
This new ad unit is being tested by Chick-fill-A for free samples of their chicken biscuits. When the unit is clicked it launches a popup with the form & gives users the option to quickly fill the form from their profile info (side note, it is only a matter of time until this is the default option – where the form pops up & the info is filled, im sure there will be an option to change / remove the profile info – but it will be more opt-out. This type of behavior pumps the click to form-submit conversion rate – as the user doesn’t really have to do much).
This move & the pending full roll out of this ad unit will no doubt make Facebook Ads the largest Lead Generation Ad Network on the web. While the test is perfect for a foodservice company (like the free chicken biscuit sample from Chick-fill-A), don’t be fooled to think this wont make its way to the more profitable side of the lead generation business. Think credit cards, mortgages, local service professional and much much more. Oh and just wait for the Facebook Ad Network & the Facebook Affiliate Program that was confirmed by its CEO – then you will be able to post these lead-gen offers on your site via facebook connect and share in the revenue that Facebook collects from the advertiser.
So, what do you think? Did Facebook just become the largest lead generation network on the internet?