Facebook to remove thousands of outdated interest targets for advertising

(Don’t panic.) The interest targets will be phased out in the coming months.

Facebook announced Tuesday that it will be removing thousands of outdated and infrequently used interest targets such as old movie and band names and other older cultural references.

The vast majority of advertisers won’t notice the removals, said Graham Mudd, VP of product marketing for ads at Facebook, in an interview Monday.

The interest targets will be deprecated across all Facebook Ads interfaces, including APIs.

Timing of the removals. The interest targets will no longer be available for new campaigns. For those advertisers who are using any of the targets that are being removed in their existing ad sets will be notified starting in August that the targets can no longer be used. The interest targets will be allowed to run for a few months or so (a specific date hasn’t been determined) before advertisers will be prompted to change their targets.

Why we should care. There may be some edge cases that this will affect (specific memorabilia, perhaps?) if these are rarely used targets, but as Mudd said, most advertisers likely won’t notice the removals. Clearing out the clutter of older interest targets makes sense from a maintenance perspective for Facebook. For advertisers, it could also make interest selection easier without having to wade through so many options.

Mudd said this is part of an effort — such as the new Business Manager redesign and News Feed ad aspect ratio changes — to make the platform easier and more consistent to use and that advertisers should expect to see continued focus on streamlining processes and features.

About The Author

Ginny Marvin is Third Door Media’s Editor-in-Chief, managing day-to-day editorial operations across all of our publications. Ginny writes about paid online marketing topics including paid search, paid social, display and retargeting for Search Engine Land, Marketing Land and MarTech Today. With more than 15 years of marketing experience, she has held both in-house and agency management positions. She can be found on Twitter as @ginnymarvin.

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