Unbranded Research Poll Ads on Facebook


This is the first time I have seen an unbranded "research" ad on Facebook that uses their new interactive platform (polling, events, etc). Below is a screenshot of an unbranded "research poll" about car insurance and consumer purchase habits. The ad unit clearly uses the same infrastructure and format as the branded poll units (see samples here) but, unlike the others, this is aimed at collecting data rather than promoting a brand or fan page. This too is interesting because, as part of branded campaigns, the polls are usually aimed at capturing attention rather than consumer behavior data - for instance, Saw VI polls were somewhat outlandish and bizarre... such that you were driven to participate and see how others vote. Facebook has a note below the poll that this data can be shared anonymously - but because there is no brand associated with the unit and because the header says "Sponsored", it is still a strange interaction (I took the poll specifically to see what brand would pop up upon completion). Once the poll is answered, it collapses and thanks you for "participating in [the] research poll". In contrast, after voting in a branded poll unit, it displays the popular vote and which friends participated.

The Research Poll - which appears in the same 'premium' location as other units

facebook sponsored poll without branding Upon completion of the poll, you are thanked for participating... a different experience than with branded units

sponsored ad on facebook