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Facebook Mobile Advertising: Early Results

Written by: Cheryl Morris, VP Marketing

Earlier this week we formally announced support for Facebook mobile advertising, releasing a new Ad Engine feature that enables marketers to reach people in their Facebook mobile News Feeds. While it is still early, initial results from mobile advertising campaigns run through our Ad Engine show the promise of the Facebook mobile marketing opportunity.

We compared performance of the Facebook mobile ad unit, a Sponsored Story in mobile News Feeds, to the performance of Facebook Ads on desktops – both Sponsored Stories and Marketplace Ads. Thanks to TechCrunchInside FacebookMobile Marketer and MediaPost for citing the early mobile results we’re seeing below:

Relative Click-Through Rate

CTRs for mobile Sponsored Stories are on average 12 times higher than CTRs for desktop Sponsored Stories.

Nanigans is seeing CTRs crossing 2% when mobile delivery is combined with interest targeting.

Relative Cost Per Click

CPCs for mobile Sponsored Stories are on average 45% less expensive than desktop Sponsored Stories (desktop includes Sponsored Stories in the News Feed and right sidebar).

Nanigans is seeing CPCs as low as $0.20 for mobile Sponsored Stories.

Takeaways for Marketers

As we underscored last week, the Facebook mobile marketing opportunity is hard to ignore with over 500 million people accessing the social network from mobile and comScore reporting that the average American smartphone subscriber spends nearly 15 minutes a day on Facebook from their mobile devices.

We attribute these promising early results to the ad unit’s novelty, social relevancy and prominence in Facebook mobile News Feeds. Because the Facebook mobile ad unit is a Sponsored Story, it inherently includes socially relevant information. For example, you may see a Sponsored Story showing that your friend played a new Facebook game. This social context makes the ad unit more relevant and interesting to people than standard mobile ads. The early results show Sponsored Stories are quite engaging for people on mobile devices, in part due to the prominence the ad unit is given in Facebook mobile News Feeds where it takes up a substantial portion of the mobile screen. Facebook desktop mobile News Feeds, on the other hand, have competing content in the left and right sidebars.

While we are excited about the promise of these initial Facebook mobile advertising results, it is important to keep in mind that all new ad formats tend to have high engagement rates and low costs at the onset and generally settle over time. We look forward to monitoring and continuing to share insights into Facebook mobile advertising in the future!

Do you plan to take advantage of the Facebook mobile marketing opportunity? Let us know in the comments!

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