Last Monday, in an attempt to promote our Facebook application while experimenting with Facebook’s advertising platform, I signed up for Flyers Pro, a low-cost CPC-based service that allows users to purchase targeted advertisements on Facebook.
Over the course of one week, my flyer received 2,108 impressions and zero clicks. Starting with almost 1000 on the first day, daily impressions steadily declined as the week progressed, probably because Facebook’s algorithm saw that they weren’t making any money on this flyer.
Even though I don’t expect people to click on ads within Facebook, since I rarely do myself, I find it somewhat surprising that I didn’t receive a single click from any of the high schoolers to whom this flyer was shown. If I were to receive a single click at this point, that would give me an overall click-through rate of less than 0.05%, which is abysmal by any standard.
While I fully recognize Facebook’s value in reaching and engaging the younger online population, this experiment has made me skeptical of the viability of CPA or CPI-based advertising with Facebook and its competitors. Given that this realm of advertising is very much in its infancy, this picture might change very soon.