All indications are that Facebook is planning an Initial Public Offering (IPO) this spring.
For one of the largest media companies on the planet, going public will only further solidify its hold on consumers. Now reports are surfacing that the company plans to launch a mobile ads platform in anticipation of the IPO. If rolled out successfully, Facebook could recalibrate the mobile marketing landscape.
Here’s why: Facebook already collects tremendous amounts of information from its users, including everyone they know and what they like to do. For advertisers, this is a goldmine. With that level of information, they can create ads that specifically target customers. And as the mobile platforms become even more ubiquitous, the opportunities to engage with consumers grow substantially.
Whether Facebook is able to capitalize on the opportunity is still to be determined. The company’s recent explorations into new services – Places and Deals, specifically – have been failures. But the revenue potential for getting the mobile ads service right is very enticing. The audience is already in place; the key is implementation.
Google and Apple currently own the largest shares of the mobile ad market (about 25 percent and 15 percent, respectively). Those numbers, though impressive, are not intimidating. If launched correctly, Facebook could quickly siphon a large segment of the market. And that’s the catch – doing it right. Though the lure to have the service ready for the IPO is alluring, the company may be better off taking its time to guarantee they hit the bull’s-eye on the first try. For the amount of potential revenue at stake, and ongoing credibility, time is money.
Would you welcome targeted Facebook ads on your mobile platform? Why or why not?