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by Stephen Logan on 20th July 2010
Now with 500 million members, Facebook have even more reason to celebrate thanks to a 33% increase in the number of ads being shown compared with the same period last year.
These figures will make pleasant reading for Facebook’s hierarchy. Having reclaimed their advertising responsibilities from Microsoft earlier this year, they will invariably be looking to develop this core revenue stream [see: Facebook drop Microsoft adCenter, Integrates Bing Search]. So with a further rise in ad impressions here in the UK, things look pretty rosy for the social networking titan.
If you’re wondering what kind of figures we’re talking about, Facebook saw almost 20 billion impressions during the month of May, 31 million of which were from unique visitors. These figures are in stark contrast to the 12 billion and 22 million they received during the same period last year [see: UK Facebook ads rocket 33% in a year | Media Week]. Whilst Microsoft hold a slight lead when it comes to unique views, the growth of Facebook’s audience is unparalleled, making the site an advertiser’s dream.
Unfortunately there are no financial figures to back up these statistics; but working on the ‘more is more’ principle of Internet advertising, the UK market ought to be profitable for Facebook. Ahead of all the major search engines and other major stores, including Amazon, the social networking site appears to be in a league of its own in generating impressions for advertising partners; echoing their success in the US market [see: Facebook Leads the Way in Growing US Display Ad Market].
They have been working hard to develop new avenues for ads, including the integration of a localised ad vehicle [see: Facebook prepares to launch localised ad vehicle | Campaign]. Without the benefit of having their adverts steered by search terms or related products, Facebook face the challenge of targeting campaigns at certain key demographics. Conversely though, they do have information such as age, gender, location and marital status to provide some level of personalisation.
So what’s the lesson here? Well, first and foremost, Facebook has to be taken seriously as an advertising option. Whilst there may be difficulties in targeting compared with using Google AdWords, the fact that their ads have seen a 33% rise in views demonstrates that there is a huge audience out there.