Despite its towering success, Facebook recently started taking a lot of hits for the slack in its audience monetizing efforts. The heat got even hotter once it announced its plans of going public. Along with addressing investors’ distress about its general inability to monetize its enormous success, Facebook had to answer specific questions such as how it planned to cash in on the growing mobile advertising segment.
The launch of Facebook Exchange (FBX) and mobile ads were crucial towards implementing a strong monetization strategy. These steps were important for Facebook to gain a strong foothold in the digital advertising industry and be counted as one of the players to reckon with in terms of gaining ROI along with reach.
Both Facebook mobile ads and FBX have been around for quite some time now. Let us now examine how effective they have been…
Facebook Exchange (FBX)
Recent research by RBC Capital Markets and Advertising Age which is featured by eMarketer examines the effectiveness of FBX on Facebook campaigns of US marketers in January and September 2013. The most notable finding here is that 20% of marketers are saying FBX has been “very effective” for their campaigns.
What is FBX offering that makes it this efficient and marketers so fond of it?
FBX not only allows marketers reach over a billion users, it also lets them leverage invaluable consumer intent data (running on other exchanges) to expand their direct response campaigns on Facebook. FBX also allows real-time bidding features like view-through conversions, creative optimization, global frequency capping, multi-touch attribution, and day-parting that drive efficiency and thus, ROI.
FBX is ideal for marketers looking to expand the reach of their exchange-based remarketing and behavior-based audience targeting across Facebook’s user base. FBX allows Facebook’s partner platforms to place a cookie in users’ browsers when they have reached a certain stage in the buying process that signifies their buying intent. Even if the user doesn’t complete the transaction, they’ll be marked out as potential buyers and the partner platform will be able to use retargeting ads (that are shown on the right side of Facebook) when the user returns to Facebook.
Mobile Ads vs. Desktop Ads
Another important finding of the RBC Capital Markets and Advertising Age research is that in the war between mobile ads and desktop ads, it is mobile ads which are winning on Facebook though not by a big margin.
According to the same RBC Capital Markets and Advertising Age study, 35% marketers believe that mobile ROI is “greater” than desktop ROI. Facebook mobile ads were launched to cater to the burgeoning mass of mobile social users. As the number of mobile devices and mobile social users increase, so will the success prospects for mobile ads. According to ICT estimate, there are about 6.8 billion cellular subscriptions worldwide.
FBX and mobile ads have succeeded in meeting Facebook’s aim of attracting more advertisers, with 74% marketers reporting that they have bought Facebook ads this year as opposed to 55% in July 2012. (RBC/Ad Age study).
As mobile devices increase and desktops try to compete against mobile’s ever increasing influence, these two mighty forces are pitted against each other more than ever before. The increasing affinity of the digital world towards mobile is a signal that marketers need to heed.
56% marketers in the RBC/Adage study said that they expected to increase their Facebook ad budgets in the next year. And according to eMarketer, half of Facebook’s estimated $3 billion revenue for next year will come from mobile for the first time.
The future does look promising for Facebook and mobile devices. In the light of this recent research that puts Facebook’s FBX and mobile ads in positive light, what are your reactions? Let us know through your comments.