Facebook is getting ready to move to the next phase of monetizing their Messenger platform. On an announcement made on the Messenger blog, product manager Eddie Zhang shared the company’s plans of initiating a “very small test” of ads they will place in Messenger. Zhang shared that they intend to launch this test in Australia and Thailand, as a start.
With the test, businesses are given an opportunity to put their ads on the home screen of Facebook’s Messenger platform. As more and more people use Messenger, this leads to a larger exposure for the business. Zhang said the ads will be placed below recent conversations, an area where users usually get a birthday reminder or access to active users on Messenger.
These ads will belong to a new “Sponsored” tab and will scroll from left to right. Each ad will feature a header image, title, and a short description of the company. Below this, a “Learn More” link will be available so that users can see more details about the company.
With this small test, Facebook hopes to bring in more companies to use their platform as a way of building brand awareness and increasing customer satisfaction. At the same time, this new Messenger feature will give advertisers a better way of showcasing their products and services to both new and existing customers.
But while this new feature may serve as a big help for companies, users are wary of the idea of seeing ads on their messages. Facebook explicitly explained that ads won’t be seen on a conversation directly.
The only time users will see ads on their conversations is when they opt to click on an “ad experience” or initiate a conversation with a brand. Each user also has the option to hide or report specific ads, especially ones they find offensive.