Facebook recently announced that it has figured out a way to override ad blockers and show its users ads, both on mobile devices and computers. This means that if you’re a Facebook user, you’ll probably be seeing ads even if you have an ad blocker installed.
These ads may be helpful, such as alerting you when your favorite tv show comes back on the air, or when your favorite author has a new book on sale. Or they may be irrelevant, such as ads for baby diapers when your child is leaving home for college.
So now would be a good time to check out your Ad Preference settings on Facebook to find out what Facebook knows about you.
How Facebook Learns About You
If you’ve been using Facebook, chances are you’ve made friends, Liked Pages, shared posts and reacted to others’ posts. These actions help give Facebook an idea of who you are, including your beliefs, political leanings, interests, and more. Facebook also may know where you’ve traveled, where you live and where you went to school.
All of these kernels of knowledge help Facebook to show you ads that should be relevant to you. But they may not be.
For example, just because you have Liked silly cat videos doesn’t mean you have a cat. And just because your friends mostly tend towards a certain political view doesn’t mean that you do too.
The good news is Facebook has made it easier for you to adjust your ad preferences. Hey, since you’re going to be seeing ads no matter what, you may as well make them more relevant.
By taking a few minutes to review your ad preferences you may be able to avoid seeing irrelevant, embarrassing or annoying advertisements on Facebook.
⇒ Check out Ad Blockers – For Better or Worse?
Facebook Ad Preferences
Facebook offers two ways to adjust your ad preferences. You can use both to make sure you have the most relevant ad experience.
Ad Preferences Page
You can see what Facebook knows about you on your Facebook Ad Preferences Page. There you will see the interests Facebook thinks you have.
Check out your interests in different categories, such as Lifestyle & culture, News and entertainment, People and more.
[note] This page is best accessed using your computer. [/note]
Hover your cursor over an interest to see an explanation of why Facebook thinks you like it. Click on the X in the upper right corner of an interest to remove it from your ad preferences.
Click on the interest to see sample ads. After you view a sample ad, you can let Facebook know if that interest is relevant to you.
[tip] Ad blockers may block sample ads on the Ad Preferences page. Pause your ad blocker if you don’t see sample ads after clicking on the interest. [/tip]
You can hide a specific ad on Facebook when you see one that is irrelevant. For example, you may want to see ads about an interest but want to hide an individual ad.
To hide an ad, click or tap on the down arrow in the upper right corner of the ad. You’ll see a drop-down menu.
Click on Hide ad to be shown fewer ads like this.
You can also click on Why am I seeing this? to be taken to a page with the link to your Ad Preferences. Alternatively, you can let Facebook know that the ad is useful so you can see more ads like that one.
⇒ Also see, How To Find Out What Google Knows About You
Have you adjusted your Ad Preferences on Facebook? Did Facebook guess right about your interests? Were you surprised by any of your interests on Facebook?
Share your thoughts in the Comments section below!
* Facebook eye image (edited) courtesy of Geralt via Pixabay and Creative Commons