Facebook Moves Ahead with Mobile Advertising Platform
After concerns from its users, Facebook is still moving forward with plans for its mobile advertising platform. The company’s chief operating officer, Sheryl Sandberg, announced that the goal of the platform is to increase engagement and usefulness of advertising and not necessarily to increase the number of ads seen. The new software that will soon be released by Facebook will provide companies with the chance to send ads directly to users’ smartphones even when the homescreen is locked. According to Venturebeat.com, with the recent launch of Facebook Home, a special OS skin for Android users, and the social network taking in 30 percent of all mobile ad spending in 2013, Facebook is obviously trying to profit from the opportunity mobile presents.
According to Venturebeat.com, Facebook introduced ads on its apps last year, placing messages from brands alongside wall posts, photos and other content in users' news feeds. Also noted last year was that American mobile ad spending increased from $1.45 billion to $4.06 billion in 2012 alone, according to ad analysis firm eMarketer. Reportedly, this growth was driven almost entirely by Facebook. This is surprising considering that at the beginning of 2012, Facebook on a phone was an ad-free experience, but the company grew its mobile ad revenue to $340 million in one year. With respect to concerns from its users about being bombarded with ads, Sandberg reportedly told reporters that the company had compared the aggregate engagement of users who saw ads on their mobile apps to those who did not and said they were pleased with the results. The chief operating officer stated that, "Our goal is not to increase the number of ads you receive but to increase the usefulness of those ads to you." Announced in a briefing with technology journalists, Sheryl Sandberg made it very clear that mobile was now the company’s main focus. According to the BBC, last quarter was the first time when users spent more time with Facebook on their phones than on a desktop.
Although the company claims this new platform will not further agitate users with all its advertisements, I will only believe it when I see. If these concerns are already present, how is this move going to alleviate them? I understand the importance of capitalising on the trend of increase mobile usage but seeing many ads may encourage users to check their Facebook updates less often. Don’t you agree?
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