Mobile has been on the minds of advertisers throughout the paid search sphere for years.  It is only the natural progression that the promotion of Mobile Apps has gained popularity as an important tool for advertising.  As other channels start to focus on Mobile App advertisements, Facebook introduces Audience Networks as their answer to the craze.


Let’s Talk Basics: What is Facebook’s Audience Network?

I am going to take this opportunity now to explain what exactly Audience Network is.  If you are familiar with this new feature and read any of the articles that discuss the release, you can probably skip this section entirely! If you haven’t, I am going to catch you up in the next few short paragraphs:

Facebook Ads are leaving Facebook – or they will at least be given that opportunity.  We will be able to use the same creative as News Feed ads, but they will be displayed within other Mobile Apps.  While Facebook plans to expand to other objectives in the future, they will only be available for other Mobile App Installs and Mobile App Engagement to start.

There will be three available formats: banner, interstitial, and native.

ad formats

Banner ads are what I see as the traditional mobile app ad.  These ads appear at the bottom of the app.  Facebook is currently promoting the native ad format as being the most successful of their initial tests. Native ads are supposed to blend into the look and feel of the supporting app.

Where Can I Sign Up?

As it is currently, it will only be available to a few advertisers in the coming months. Facebook advises you to reach out to your account representative, if you are interested on being one of the first.

What Does This Mean to Me?

Facebook has admitted that there will be several quirks and performance will vary at the start.  If you have some room to expand and you have an app to promote, this could be an opportunity to expand into a new area before it becomes competitive.  The Audience Network will be able to use any of the audiences that we have available now within Facebook.

I believe that we will be able to approach Audience Network similarly to how we approach anything display-related: remember that the image and the offer are the most important features. You have to take someone who is using an App on their phone, and talk them into leaving that App to download another. The key will be to start with small, very focused audiences.

My approach is going to be simple. I want to use what I already know works well within Facebook: my images, my audiences, and my call-to-actions.  Then, I am going to test it and see. As with anything new, I advise you to approach cautiously until more data starts coming back.

Do you have any other recommendations for how to approach Facebook’s Audience Network?

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Kristina McLane
Kristina McLane is an expert PPC Account Manager at Hanapin Marketing, where in addition to AdWords account management she specializes in social advertising and audience modeling, drawing on her background in anthropology to explore human behavior and insights.