Voter File Data Comes to Facebook Ads

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Two digital ad firms that offer voter file-driven ad targeting - Intermarkets and CampaignGrid - are now part of the social giant's growing group of third-party exchange partners.

buttonTampa, FL - The Facebook Exchange is open for political business. Two digital ad firms that offer voter file-driven ad targeting are now part of the social giant's growing group of third-party partners. This week, Intermarkets and CampaignGrid said they are part of Facebook's real-time exchange, which opens Facebook Marketplace display ad inventory - the ads that sit on the right rail of the page - to advertisers buying through those outside ad firms.

Both Intermarkets and CampaignGrid enable advertisers to target digital ads based on publicly-available national voter file data. Intermarkets partners with data powerhouse Aristotle to aim ads based on party affiliation and degree of voter activity in addition to information such as demographic info on gender and household income levels, and psychographic information.

CampaignGrid employs several data sets including the Republican National Committee's voter data to target voters online. When an impression is available, Facebook identifies the user and partners including Intermarkets and CampaignGrid and several DSPs can bid in real time for that impression.

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"Now we're able to utilize a voter file to see a population to target against...a publicly reported information system," said Michael Loy, chief managing officer of Intermarkets, who said the company just enabled the Facebook targeting last week but no advertisers have signed on yet. ClickZ spoke with Loy here in Tampa at the Republican National Convention. While Intermarkets serves advertisers on both sides of the aisle, its crown jewel is DrudgeReport.com, which tends to attract lots of advertisers on the right. Mitt Romney's campaign, for instance, is currently running ads on Drudge featuring Romney and his VP pick Paul Ryan as "America's Comeback Team."

In effect, the Facebook partnership enables basic retargeting, but with real-time bidding - and on Facebook where it has not been available before the recently-launched exchange. So, when someone visits DrudgeReport.com, for example, she may be targeted with ads on Facebook based on that information.

According to Loy, Facebook requires advertisers in the exchange to meet a minimum CPM price before it allows them to run ads through its partners on Facebook.

Facebook's real-time bidding exchange opens the site up to a large pool of data for display ad targeting, but advertisers cannot combine native Facebook profile data with its partners' outside data, which would be sure to ruffle feathers among privacy advocates. Some observers, however, expect Facebook eventually to allow integration of its rich profile data with its partners' data, in part because the company is scrambling to attract more ad dollars and such an offering could command premium ad prices.

Other ad targeting firms that are part of the nascent Facebook Exchange include AdRoll, AppNexus, DataXu, TellApart, Trade Desk, Triggit, and Turn.

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