Posted on 20 September 2009.
FACEBOOK users beware: advertisers are watching your page and they know what you need.
Relationship status single? Dating agency ads pop up on your Facebook page.
Update your status to engaged and the spruiking is suddenly about wedding gowns, weight loss and planning hens’ nights.
Married? Then you must be thinking about babies, credit cards and mortgages.
Australia’s six million Facebook users are being targeted by businesses, which pay tens of thousands of dollars a month for access to personal information.
The advertising strategies are so refined businesses can target their products according to sex, age, location, relationship status, job title, workplace or university.
Even subjects such as favourite music or pastimes can be drilled into for the purposes of marketing.
Advertisers respond to a Facebook page update in the blink of an eye.
The Sunday Telegraph witnessed one user change their status from single to engaged last week.
Shannan Human, 30, of Dee Why, said ads on her profile page changed drastically when she changed such identifying details as her relationship status.
“Since I’ve changed my status to married I keep getting all this baby stuff, and I don’t want to have a baby,” she said.
“And when I changed to engaged I used to get stacks of wedding gown ads and weight-loss ads.
“I find it a bit of a pest, to be honest. I use Facebook primarily as a social networking site to keep in touch with my friends and family.
“I feel like it’s an invasion of my privacy if I don’t want my stuff sold to a third party – I’m there to socialise with friends, not to make money for other people.”
Ben Bevins, 30, became engaged to his fiance Lauren in December and noticed the ads for wedding suits and rings straightaway.
“It was actually a good break from all the muscle-building ads and ‘single women in your area’ ads,” he said, laughing.
Read more at news.com.au
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