Facebook is shuttering a product because there aren’t enough desktop-using visitors to justify its existence. Granted, social may be on the frontlines of marketing, but perhaps this is a bellwether for marketers who are concerned about mobile optimization.
On Tuesday, the Facebook for Business page announced that the once revolutionary real-time ad retargeting option for third party ad tech companies, Facebook Exchange, “will no longer be available to advertisers on Nov. 1.” Instead, Facebook suggested marketers try cross-device retargeting via Custom and Lookalike Audience options. The Audience Network can cut out the ad tech middleman and directly sell ads to marketers.
The reason for this is simple, writes Mike Shields of the Wall Street Journal on Wednesday.
“The ad inventory available through the FBX product was limited to space desktop computers, such as display ads that appear along the right side of Facebook’s home page,” he says. “FBX did not feature mobile or video ads. And mobile now makes up the bulk of Facebook’s traffic and revenue.”
Facebook says of its 1.65 billion monthly active users, 1.51 billion are on mobile devices.
Conversely, on Target Marketing’s most popular article on Tuesday, “Google Gives 10-15 More Characters to Organic Results,” nearly 95 percent of the B-to-B audience viewed the item via desktop.
As for that bellwether, the WSJ article sums it up.
“‘Mobile is now a necessary component of effective marketing campaigns, and Facebook is helping millions of businesses understand their customers’ purchase path across devices,’” quotes the WSJ of Matt Idema, VP of monetization product marketing at Facebook. “‘Dynamic Ads and Custom Audiences have mobile at their core and are delivering excellent results for businesses, so Facebook Exchange spending has shifted towards those solutions.’”
What do you think, marketers?
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