Facebook Set to Eliminate Sponsored Stories in April

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If you want to purchase a Sponsored Story on Facebook, you’d better do it fast

The social network will retire Sponsored Story advertisements beginning April 9, according to a blog post

Sponsored stories show when a user’s Facebook friend interacts with a sponsored Page, app or event. For example, if one of your Facebook friends posted about Nike’s Brand Page, and Nike chose to promote that interaction, you would see it as a Sponsored Story within your News Feed

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Advertisers will be able to buy Sponsored Stories up until April 9, at which point all existing Sponsored Stories will transition into other ad formats. For example, a Sponsored Story highlighting a page Like will simply turn into a Page Like ad Read more…

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Facebook Video Ads Are Here, but Will Users Click?

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Facebook’s motto is “move fast and break things,” but it appears the company tried to do the opposite with its latest ad product.

Facebook confirmed Tuesday that it is testing video ads this week that automatically start playing in the News Feed on desktop and mobile. The move is among the most significant of the company’s many, many efforts to introduce new revenue-generating products following its IPO last year. Some analysts predict that video ads could be a billion-dollar market opportunity for Facebook, but it comes with the risk of potentially alienating users

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The Future of Facebook Ad Revenue: Small Businesses

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Facebook hit all the right numbers during its most recent earnings call last month

Revenue was up. Profit was higher than any quarter in company history. And user totals were up in almost every category imaginable, including monthly actives, daily actives and mobile.

It’s a safe bet that Facebook will see even higher revenue growth in the upcoming quarter — the holidays always produce great ad revenue — but that’s not the only reason to be optimistic about Facebook’s future revenue stream

The social network has 1 million advertisers on its platform, a number first announced in June, and double the number of advertisers from a year before, said Dan Levy, Facebook’s director of small businesses. One million advertisers is an impressive figure. Equally impressive is that Facebook has 25 million small businesses with active company pages, which means only 4% of companies that use Facebook to connect with customers are also using the site to advertise. That’s a lot of potential advertising revenue sitting close at hand Read more…

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Is Facebook a Truly Mobile-First Company Yet?

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Has Facebook finally succeeded in becoming a mobile-first company? That’s the big question heading into the social network’s third quarter earnings results Wednesday

Facebook has impressed analysts and investors in each quarter so far this year by reporting strong growth in mobile ad revenue. The company revealed that mobile ads accounted for 41% of total ad revenue in the second quarter this year, up from 30% in the first quarter and essentially nothing a year earlier. If that growth continues, Facebook could approach or even surpass the 50% mark this quarter

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Facebook Ads Are 1,790% More Profitable on iOS Than Android

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After studying more than 200 billion Facebook ads, it has been discovered that the ads are more effective on iOS than on Android. The study conducted by Nanigans shows that Facebook ads on iOS are 1,790% more profitable than on Android-powered devices.
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Nanigans is one of Facebook’s largest ad buyers specifically focusing on retail advertising. According to the company (via VentureBeat), iOS-based ads have shown a surprisingly high click through rate:

“Retailers are realizing significantly greater return from audiences on iOS than audiences on Android,” the report says. “For the first three quarters of 2013, RPC [revenue per click] on iOS averaged 6.1 times higher than Android and ROI [return on investment] on iOS averaged 17.9 times higher than Android.”

“Audiences cost more on iPhone, and the reason is that it’s worth it,” Slagen said. “Typically, we’re not looking to acquire one-time customers, we’re looking to invest over time … so we pay more up front for better long-term results.” Read more…

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Facebook Radically Simplifies Ad Buying

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Facebook ad buyers have cause to celebrate: On Tuesday, the social network unveiled a major overhaul of both its basic ad-buying platform, Ads Manager, and its more sophisticated offering, Power Editor, both of which now boast a more streamlined interface.

Those who have used Ads Manager and Power Editor in the past know that neither tool is the simplest or most logically designed. Previously, ad buyers were asked to choose from a range of ad options and then select their campaign objectives and optimization methods.

Now, more reasonably, advertisers are first asked to identify their objectives. That could be a sales conversion on a website, for example, or an increase in mobile app downloads. Other objectives include increasing total page Likes, increasing engagement with particular posts or a Facebook app, boosting in-store Offer claims and upping RSVPs to a Facebook event. Read more…

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Facebook Apologizes For Ads Featuring Photos of Suicide Victim

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Two online dating ads featured on Facebook this week included photos of a teenager who committed suicide

The social network has since apologized for the ads, which promoted a Canadian online-dating site by including images of Rehtaeh Parsons. Parsons, 17, hanged herself in April after pictures showing her alleged rape circulated online

In its apology, Facebook called the ads’ inclusion of the photos “a gross violation of our ad policies.” A company spokesperson released the following statement:

“This is an extremely unfortunate example of an advertiser scraping an image from the Internet and using it in their ad campaign. This is a gross violation of our ad policies and we have removed the ad and permanently deleted the advertiser’s account. We apologize for any harm this has caused.” Read more…

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Facebook Ad Images Are Getting Bigger

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You may begin to notice the ads on your Facebook News Feed with more frequency, but not necessarily because they are becoming more prevalent

Beginning Tuesday, Facebook ads will feature larger photos to go along with an ad’s text and, in some cases, an image will be 3.5 times the size of old ad images, says a Facebook spokesperson

Facebook announced the ad format change to advertisers about a month ago, but the new look will go into effect for Facebook users beginning Tuesday. The changes won’t just impact the way the ads look to users, they will also change how advertisers prepare campaigns for the platform Read more…

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Instagram Plans to Introduce Ads Within the Next Year

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Enjoy your ad-free Instagram feed while you can: Instagram plans to introduce ads in the next year, according to a new report.

The Wall Street Journal spoke with Emily White, Instagram’s director of business operations, who revealed that the photo and video-sharing service is laying the groundwork to begin selling ads within the year. “We want to make money in the long term, but we don’t have any short-term pressure,” she said.

Facebook, which acquired Instagram in 2012 for roughly $750 million, has previously teased the idea of introducing ads on Instagram to justify its investment, but never with a firm timeline. Read more…

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How Facebook Is Using Your Photos in Ads

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Much has been written regarding Facebook‘s new “Statement of Rights and Responsibilities” policy — the company announced changes to it a few weeks back in the wake of a class action lawsuit settlement at the end of August

Most alarming to users was the understanding that their profile data, including their profile picture, name, and personal information, could show up as part of a Facebook ad their friends may see on the site. This information was not new, but it was spelled out in more detail for the first time by Facebook.

The advertisements, known as social ads, are tailored in an attempt to provide users with more relevant ads. For example, if you ‘Like’ Nike’s company page, your friends may see a Nike ad alongside their feed, which may include a thumbnail of your profile picture and the fact that you ‘Like’ the company’s page. The belief is that if you like a company or brand, there’s a good chance your friends may feel the same way Read more…

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