Microsoft, which was an early investor in Facebook and sold banner ads on the site between 2007 and 2010, became the first company to put its own ad on Facebook’s logout page, with a large Bing page appearing when some users logout.
The new advertisement is much larger than any Facebook previously offered, covering one half or more of the logout page, and it also includes search capabilities on Bing. Users who wish to carry out a search on Bing can type terms directly into the Bing search box on the Facebook logout page. Facebook just announced this past Wednesday the new logout ad page unit. Microsoft has had a long partnership with Facebook and its search engine Bing powers Facebook’s internal search, map and translation features, so it is appropriate that Microsoft is the first advertizer to buy the new ad offering. Microsoft in turn uses Facebook data for its Bing decision engine and for Outlook and other email and chat programs. Only premium advertisers that work directly with Facebook can buy the logout page ad, which is sized perfectly for promoting videos.
The Facebook logout ad, while several times larger than expected and offering search functionality for Bing, and perhaps other features for other companies in the future, is quite unobtrusive overall since the user only sees the ad on logout and it only appears for a few seconds. Further, the most active Facebook members rarely logout but once a day or after very long stretches so there is very little impact on the user experience.