How Facebook is evolving into a mobile ad giant

By John EganAugust 8, 2014

Facebook, the world’s No. 1 social media network, is feeling the mobile momentum.

In the second quarter of 2014, mobile ad revenue made up 62 percent, or $1.66 billion, of total ad revenue at Facebook. That’s up from 41 percent, or $660 million, of total ad revenue in the second quarter of 2013. During 2014, mobile ad revenue for Facebook is expected to hit $6.82 billion, according to

“What Facebook has done with mobile is one of the most impressive things I’ve seen an Internet company do in recent years,” The Wall Street Journal quoted Mark Mahaney, an analyst at RBC Capital Markets, as saying.

Impressive, indeed. In 2012, Facebook accounted for only 5.4 percent of the global market for mobile ads, according to eMarketer. Last year, that share rose to 17.5 percent, and eMarketer forecasts it will jump to 21.7 percent in 2014.

Undoubtedly, Facebook is banking on the future of mobile, and various speakers at the upcoming LeadsCon New York are bound to touch on the social media network’s meteoric rise in mobile.

Chairman and CEO Mark Zuckerberg recently told Wall Street analysts that 654 million of the 829 million people who use Facebook every day do so on mobile devices, and “there is still so much room to grow.”

Noting that mobile ad revenue soared 151 percent from the second quarter of 2013 to the second quarter of this year, Sheryl Sandberg, chief operating officer, said Facebook isn’t pinning its hopes solely on mobile app install ads.

“They remain a good part of our mobile ad revenue and we’re excited about the opportunities there,” she said. “But we see our opportunities in mobile ads as much broader than just installing apps.”

So, what else will propel mobile ad revenue at Facebook? According to, you can look for mobile video ads to contribute to the overall growth of mobile advertising at Facebook.

“Facebook just started testing them in December, but by some accounts, they could soon become the key driver for ad revenue growth on the social network. They might even start to steal ad dollars from television that Facebook long hoped to capture,” reported.

To help capture more of the video ad market, Facebook recently agreed to buy LiveRail, an advertising technology company. LiveRail helps clients like Major League Baseball, A&E Networks and Gannett publish ads in videos that show up on websites and apps, Facebook said.

While Facebook is making significant progress in mobile advertising, it still lags well behind Google in that market.

“To be sure, catching Google in the race for mobile ad spend is going to be a long, uphill battle,” according to The Motley Fool. “But if the industry's expectations become reality — and last quarter proved Facebook is making strides — the race for mobile ads supremacy is going to become a war for the ages.”

When that war might end is anyone’s guess.

“Knocking a behemoth like Google off its mobile perch is no easy feat, nor will it happen overnight,” The Motley Fool said. “But Facebook is well on its way to becoming a mobile force even the mighty search giant will have to reckon with.”

This article is brought to you by LeadsCon New York.

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