The Accidental Advertisers
According to an article from the Wall Street Journal, advertisements on Facebook account for 24% of all online ads in the United States. Although Facebook won’t release their official number, analysts estimate that Facebook brings in about $1.28 billion from ads alone. However, compared to other high-market websites, it is relatively cheap to advertise on Facebook. Part of this is because many marketers are not sure as to whether Facebook users really pay attention to those ads found on the right side of your Facebook homepage.
Many marketers have problems with the way that Facebook runs its advertising; Facebook only wants small, simple ads on their website, while many advertisers like ads with big graphics and lots of noises. In addition, many marketers wish that Facebook would sell the data users enter into the website so that they could better target consumers with their ads. However, Facebook’s vice president of advertising and global operations David Fischer says that they have no intentions of selling users’ information.
I found this article to be especially interesting because I recently saw The Social Network and am currently reading The Accidental Billionaires, the book by Ben Mezrich that the movie was based upon. Apparently, during Facebook’s beginning, founder Mark Zuckerberg was completely opposed to having any advertising on the website. He had no desire to produce revenue from Facebook. In fact, Zuckerberg was so turned off by money that when he was in high school he turned down seven figures offered to him by Microsoft. It’s interesting to see how much a company and a person’s intentions can change with some growth and success.