Marketing 3 min read

Facebook to Test Display Ads in its Messenger App

Atstock Productions |

Atstock Productions |

Social media network giant Facebook is now further monetizing Facebook Messenger.

In a post on the company’s Messenger blog site, Facebook announced the global beta expansion of Messenger ads. The post read:

“Messenger is dedicated to building new and creative ways to help businesses and developers connect with the more than 1.2 billion people around the world who use the platform every month. Today we’re pleased to announce the global beta expansion of Messenger ads.”

Facebook further added that Messenger ads would offer developers and businesses a way to use Facebook targeting to reach more people on a global scale.

The Messenger ad suite will include Messenger ads, Click to Messengers ads, and Sponsored Messages.

Messenger ads will be located on the Home tab of Messenger. Once clicked, the ad will automatically redirect the person to a destination which can either be a website or a Messenger conversation.

Click to Messenger ads will have a more personalized touch by driving people to a conversation after interacting with a Facebook, Instagram, or Messenger ad. On the other hand, Sponsored Messages will enable businesses to re-engage with people who have started a conversation with them.

Facebook stated that small percentage of users would start seeing ads in their Messenger Home tabs towards the end of this month. The coverage of the testing will gradually increase in the months to come and as the company builds their ads inventory.

#Facebook is now testing #MessengerAds. Expect to see ads popping soon!Click To Tweet

Facebook Messenger ads

Click to Message ads were first seen as early as 2015 while Facebook started testing Sponsored Messages ads back in April 2016. According to Tech Crunch, Facebook began testing the Messenger ads integration in January of this year. Back then, the social media platform announced that it would launch a ‘very small test’ in Australia and Thailand.

Messenger Ads
Messenger Ads – Towards the end of this month, people will start seeing sponsored ads in Facebook Messenger Home tab. | Image screengrab from Messenger blog

From its initial horizontal scrolling design in January, Facebook changed the Messenger ads design to a single display design.

Facebook Messenger Ads carousel design
Facebook Messenger Ads initial carousel design | Image screengrab from Messenger blog

In another statement to Tech Crunch, Facebook stated that where the Facebook Messenger ads appear in the inbox will depend on how many threads a user has, the size of their phone’s physical screen and the pixel density of the display.

Below is a video that will give you a glimpse of how Messenger ads will work upon roll out.

While some are seeing this move from Facebook as obtrusive, ads experts like Dennis Yu, CTO of BlitzMetrics, sees this as an opportunity for Facebook to utilize its M artificial intelligence and assist people in making quick purchases through the messaging app. Yu said:

“Expect Facebook to roll these out slowly, as they normally do, but integrate payments and M, which is what makes the Messenger platform special. This is where Facebook and Amazon compete to enable frictionless commerce, so hold onto your horses for a wild ride!”

How will Messenger ads be a helpful advertising tool or a nuisance that will push FB Messenger users to switch to other alternative ad-free messaging app?

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Chelle Fuertes

Chelle is the Product Management Lead at INK. She's an experienced SEO professional as well as UX researcher and designer. She enjoys traveling and spending time anywhere near the sea with her family and friends.

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