Those headlines about Facebook and its rapidly sinking stock price may yet prove to be wrong, except that will happen later rather than sooner. And it will mostly be due to mobile ads. Doug Anmuth of J P Morgan predicts that Facebook will sell $1 billion worth of mobile ads and “sponsored stories” by 2013. Today’s engaged users pretty much live on social media such as Facebook and Twitter. It’s reached the point where mainstream news outlets gauge engagement of major stories not so much on its Nielsen numbers but in its social media statistics. Popularity is measured in “Likes” and Tweets per minute. Mobile advertising matters because the desired demographic groups are more likely than not to engage with social media on a mobile device rather than on a desktop or laptop. Consequently, ads of the future will be more successful if they’re designed with mobile technology in mind.
While both Twitter and Facebook are popular platforms for mobile social commerce, Twitter is more popular than others. In the Twitter world, 43 percent of its users access the site with a mobile phone. Approximately 56 percent of people who follow a brand on Twitter are likely to buy products from that brand. It is thought that people who follow a brand on Twitter want updates on new product releases as well as offers of free and discounted merchandise. Twitter with its ease of sharing and its shorter message format adds to Twitter’s possibilities for mobile sharing. The popularity of Twitter of course doesn’t mean that Facebook is going away any time soon, or that it is not an effective platform for mobile ads. Forecasts indicate that Facebook could be generating around $4.2 billion of income by 2014. And maybe its share price will increase as well – but our crystal ball is at the cleaners.