Facebook Exchange: what it is and who to work with to get started


The Facebook Exchange allows approved third-party platforms to place retargeting ads on Facebook after users visit external websites marked with cookies.

When a user visits a site that has hired one of Facebook’s partner platforms (DSPs), a cookie will be placed on that user’s browser when the person reaches a stage that implies purchase intent. If a user does not complete a transaction, the DSP will be able to bid on retargeting ads that appear in the right-hand column of Facebook when the user returns to the social network. See examples below, which happen to be retargeted ads about ad retargeting.

Retargeting data cannot yet be combined with Facebook’s demographic and psychographic targeting options — nor can it be used for social ads like Sponsored Stories or page post ads in News Feed — but FBX shows promise as the start of remarketing and intent-based advertising on the social network. Early partners are reporting lower costs per acquisition than on other exchanges and all have expressed continued interest in FBX.

FBX came out of beta in September, but for now, advertisers have to work with a third party to run these type of ads. They are not available from Facebook’s self-serve or Power Editor tools. However, there are more than a dozen companies that offer software or managed services for FBX campaigns. We’ve provided a rundown of 16 of them after the jump. AppNexus and Brandscreen are other providers, but they did not reply to our requests for information.


Self-serve software or managed services? Both

Minimum spend or cost to get started? $10,000

Estimated time to get started (from sale/signup to training to implementation, etc)? 1-2 business days.

Distinguishing features? (1) AdParlor is 1 of 12 companies distinguished as a strategic PMD with preferred access to alpha and beta products and enhanced support from Facebook. (2) Account management teams work closely with partners to define custom actions and proactively consult on best practices.(3) Strength is in performance advertising, reaching the right audience at the right time and often creating thousands of ad variations and optimizing bids every minute to ensure every campaign meets and exceeds established goals. (4) With both the Ads and Insights badges, AdParlor offers real-time reporting on page and ad performance in one integrated dashboard, providing enhanced data and analytics for every initiative.

Services Besides FBX? Full or self-service solution (Pulse) for all Facebook ad types, including custom audience targeting, mobile app install ads, premium and page post ads, sponsored results, open graph sponsored story ads, and other unique ad formats via Facebook.

Employees: 50+

Office locations: New York, Toronto, San Francisco, London, Shanghai, Paris, Chicago.


Self-serve software or managed services? Both.

Minimum spend or cost to get started? No minimum spend after full roll out.

Estimated time to get started? Once the advertiser places a single SmartPixel and provides creative assets, AdRoll gets FBX campaigns up and running in less than a day.

Distinguishing features? (1) LiquidAds, AdRoll’s dynamic ad product on Facebook Exchange, has delivered a 102 percent average CTR increase over static FBX ads for customers. LiquidAds on FBX enables advertisers to retarget web visitors with ads featuring exact products they were recently browsing. (2) Proprietary site crawler (“RollCrawl”) automatically pulls product images, descriptions and prices from an advertiser’s site. (3) Granular segment targeting, including the ability to segment based on time cohorts, incrementality testing and more. (4) High return on campaigns by combining FBX with multiple other inventory sources.

Services Besides FBX? Multi-platform retargeting across 60+ ad exchanges and networks. AdRoll is the largest retargeting platform with over 5,000 active advertisers in the U.S. and around the world.