Users in Thailand will start seeing ads in Facebook Messenger as part of a new trial, Facebook has announced.
The app will include adverts from businesses meaning that advertisers can conduct even more targeted marketing.
With Messenger having over a billion users worldwide it is a largely untapped resource.
The adverts will appear in a similar manner to birthday notifications rather than appearing in conversations as some had feared. Advertisers will not be able to message people directly via a conversation unless it is started by that individual.
Users will be able to hide or report adverts via a drop down menu.
The messenger adverts are initially being trialed in Australia and Thailand although given Facebook’s trends it is likely to be rolled out worldwide shortly after.
“Businesses have long been telling us that they are very excited about the potential of the Messenger platform to reach their customers and help them to drive sales, build brand awareness and increase customer satisfaction,” Facebook product manager Eddie Zhang wrote in a blog post announcing the trial.
“We believe this new test for the very small group of people in Thailand and Australia reflects a lightweight, relevant and useful approach to helping people and businesses connect on Messenger”.
“For the Messenger community, it may enhance the discovery of new experiences to make it seamless to interact with businesses on their terms. For businesses, it could offer a new way to surface their products and services to current and potential customers,” he added.
Facebook has recently allowed conversations between users and businesses so long as they are initiated by the user.
It is believed that one billion messages are sent each month.
Facebook also recently introduced Messenger chatbots, which allow businesses to send automatic messages to a user.
These had previously only appeared in the news feed but are now in Messenger threads too.