facebook mobile adsThough mobile advertising has been on digital marketers’ collective radar for the last couple of years, few advertisers have robust mobile strategies, and even fewer can boast impressive mobile advertising results.

If you’re like most digital marketers, you’ve largely kept your digital outreach focused on desktop. Many marketers are aware that though consumers are engaging heavily with their mobile devices, but by and large advertising companies don’t quite have mobile figured out. With the range of devices and the dichotomy between the mobile web and app ecosystems, the mobile ad landscape is highly fragmented, which means many tried-and-true desktop targeting techniques like retargeting or programmatic buying just don’t translate well to mobile yet.

Many companies have been hesitant to fully dive into mobile advertising. If you’re one of them, moving to mobile within the Facebook platform could be your best bet.

 

Why Mobile Now?

Consumers have adopted mobile at an astonishingly rapid pace. Half of U.S. mobile users own a smartphone, and the average smartphone user spends two and a half hours every day consuming media on their phone. According to Prosper Mobile Insights, 50% of smartphone users have made a purchase from their smartphone.

And while the majority of Facebok’s owners are still on desktop, Facebook mobile use, like all mobile usage, is growing rapidly. Right now is the perfect time to establish yourself on mobile and begin reaching the highly engaged users who are already there.

 

Why Facebook Mobile Now?

When getting into mobile, the same issues come up again and again: where are the best places to reach your users? Do you focus on in-app ads or the mobile web? What are the available targeting options? With many mobile advertising solutions, the right option is rarely obvious.

Smartphone users spend a significant percentage of their time in-app, and highly engaged Facebook users are no exception. Secondly, Facebook allows you to use its own robust targeting options to set up mobile ads, so you can be sure you’re reaching your desired audience when you serve targeted mobile ads.

Though early on, Facebook only allowed brands to serve sponsored stories on mobile, they’ve expanded the formats available via mobile, so if you aren’t interested in sponsored stories, there are now other options available including both promoted posts and page posts.

 

Custom Audiences: The Most Powerful Targeting Available for Mobile

If access to Facebook’s demographic data for mobile isn’t enough to convince you to try out Facebook mobile, there may be something else that can.

Facebook’s Custom Audiences tool was announced in 2012 with little fanfare, despite the impressive nature of the targeting parameters. If you weren’t aware or needed a refresher, Facebook’s Custom Audiences tool allows you to serve ads to people with nothing but an email address or phone number. If you have a list of past customers or email subscribers, you can now serve them targeted Facebook ads.

You can also incorporate any other Facebook ad targeting, and all Facebook ad formats are available for use. Using Custom Audiences, you could serve mobile page post ads to all the males in your email list highlighting a special deal or offer. This type of campaign is the most powerful (and frequently overlooked) use case for Facebook mobile.

 

If you’re (understandably) hesitant to devote energy and resources to a mobile campaign, Facebook could be the perfect place to start. You might be surprised by your results.

Caroline Watts

2 Comments

  1. Dennis Yu January 12th, 2013

    Caroline, I’m especially intrigued by your mention of Custom Audience Targeting on mobile. Do you have any stats or particular strategies there?

  2. Caroline Watts January 14th, 2013

    Thanks for your comment, Dennis!

    I don’t have any remarkable stats on hand, as it’s still a new offering.

    I think there’s a great opportunity here for experimentation as it’s a fairly untested tool. As far as strategies or best practices are concerned, I would segment lists carefully and really try to focus your messages.

    I think following some of the suggestions you outline in your recent Custom Audience post, particularly with regards to segmentation, would apply well to mobile.

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Caroline Watts
Caroline Watts is a marketing associate at ReTargeter, a full-service display advertiser specializing in retargeting.