Ever felt like you missed your friend Timmy's third check-in of the day at Starbucks on Facebook? Probably not. But Facebook sure thinks you have, and they have now found a way to monetize that specifically to you. Your content on Facebook, more specifically your Facebook Places check-ins or user recommended published stories, may soon end up as an advertisement on the website.
Facebook is dubbing the new ad service Sponsored Stories. In short, you would go out somewhere, check in to that location, and the company of that establishment would decide to promote your status update with the check-in as a Sponsored Story. The same is true if you saw a page on another website and recommended it to your Facebook friends through their news feed. Your status update would then appear on the right column of the homepage for others to not only see, but to hopefully like your status and like the establishment's or company's Facebook page, as well. And before you ask, no, you can't opt-out of the service.
But don't worry too much. The company was quick to clear up any misinformation about your content becoming public for just anyone to view: "A sponsored story never goes to anyone who is not one of your friends," said Kent Schoen, product manager for Facebook, in a video yesterday announcing the new service.
Facebook is predicting that these "word of mouth recommendations" (which the social network giant says is not regularly seen by users because of the overload of content available) from your own friends will increase brand lift and ad recall, as well as a user's own likeliness to recommend that same story to a friend.
The service started off yesterday for their premium advertisers.
Image credit: Facebook