Still, it would seem Facebook's version of CPA includes actions more distant from an actual sale than what the pricing model typically refers to. CPA bidders can't link their campaign to a sale, nor to a form completion, nor to other staples of lead gen commonly associated with this pricing type.
Even so, the pricing model is likely to be embraced by advertisers in the financial, education, home services and health/beauty verticals that apply a high degree of ad pricing optimization linked to specific online actions.
"It's a clever move," says Hakan Lindskog, CEO of performance marketer MediaWhiz. "Advertisers like CPA since it's accountable. CPA-based pricing has been increasing share of market for a long time."
Performance marketing spend is still growing faster than brand advertising, as the Interactive Advertising Bureau noted yesterday in its 2012 full-year online ad spending report. Online ads transacted through impression-based models rose to 32% of revenues, up from 31.3% in 2011. Meanwhile, performance-based pricing accounted for 65.9% of revenues, up from 64.6% in 2011.