Facebook advertising is performing poorly for some advertisers, with click through rates for some campaigns reported to be as low as 0.04%.

The Reach Students blog reports that the campaigns they have run using Facebook's flyer ads have produced disappointing results, with its most recent campaign delivering a mere 0.04% clickthrough rate on 1.4m page impressions.

The average clickthrough for a banner ad is around 0.2%, so Facebook appears to be underperforming, but why?

Valleywag's post tells a similar story, with media buyers reporting that they are also achieving CTR of 0.04%, though this figure covers both flyer and banner ads.

Exactly why clickthrough rates are so low is unclear, though some are suggesting that this is due to the  ‘messaging’ nature of Facebook, drawing users in for a reason other than the site’s content, while it has also been suggested that Facebook's demographic of students with low income is responsible for this.

Valleywag points out that MySpace has more than twice the clickthrough rate, at 0.1%.

Douglas McIntyre of 24/7 Wall Street takes the point further, speculating that, as audiences of social networks are less attractive to advertisers than others, the value of Facebook has been exaggerated.

Meanwhile, comScore figures suggest that MySpace is losing some of its teenage users to its rival - the number of under-18s visiting the site has fallen by  30% over the past year for MySpace, while at the same time, Facebook's teenage visitors more than doubled.  

Further reading:
Facebook developers to profit from VC interest

Graham Charlton

Published 16 July, 2007 by Graham Charlton

Graham Charlton is the former Editor-in-Chief at Econsultancy. Follow him on Twitter or connect via Linkedin or Google+

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