The mobile momentum comes as Facebook reportedly prepares prepares for a broad rollout of its mobile ad network, details of which will be unveiled at its F8 Developer conference next week. Facebook has all the pieces to make the network happen – including relationships with developers. The company has integrations with more than 75% of the 100 top-grossing iOS apps and 70 of the top Android apps. Additionally, it’s a popular supply source for legions of mobile advertisers, including app marketers buying through its Mobile App Install ads program.
The App Install ads have appeal beyond game developers, Zuckerberg told analysts. “We see more diversity on mobile than we saw on the desktop (app marketing platform). That was almost entirely games. (But) everyone who’s building apps on mobile needs installs, and we have the No. 1 product out there for delivering that.”
Likewise Facebook’s mobile revenue growth is about more than app installs, according to Chief Operating Officer Sheryl Sandberg. “A lot of people think a lot of our mobile ad revenue comes from this one source,” Sandberg said. On the contrary, she said, “our mobile ad revenue is very broad-based,” and includes branding, direct-response and app install spend.
On the topic of Facebook’s nascent experiment in selling CPM-based auto-play video ads in the news feed, Sandberg said the company had settled on a slow approach.
“We want auto-play video ads to be pretty common in the news feed before we push very hard in the ads business. We do expect to push that product but won’t see a material contribution this year,” she said.
Marketers have also embraced the ability to bring their own data to the Facebook platform. Ten times more marketers are now using Custom Audiences, its CRM-matching targeting feature, compared to last year. One of them was Ben & Jerry’s, which used Custom Audiences and other targeting factors to reach 14 million people – roughly 90% of them on mobile. The campaign drove an 8.1% sales lift, according to Facebook.