Facebook’s desire – and indeed, its need – to make a lot more money from mobile is well known. Its latest move in this regard is the beta launch of its own mobile advertising network.
The idea: ads in a range of (non-Facebook) mobile apps and mobile websites targeted using Facebook’s data – age, gender, location, Likes and so on. Advertisers pay Facebook, which then synchronises its data with that of other mobile advertising networks to place the ads.
It’s a big deal for Facebook, because it could be a way to make lots of money from mobile without stuffing its own apps full of ads. But we think there are important implications for the music industry too.
Starting with the fact that it sounds like a natural extension into mobile for music marketers who’ve been experimenting with Facebook advertising on the social network’s website.
The caveat: many marketers haven’t been hugely impressed by the website ads – a recurring theme from our contacts is that Facebook’s response to complaints about ineffective ads tends to be advice that they’re not buying enough. Even so, the ability to use the same targeting tools to book ads across a spread of non-Facebook mobile apps is significant.
Second, and more speculative: we wonder if Facebook’s move into mobile advertising outside its own apps is an opportunity for music services’ own apps – those like Pandora who are already running mobile ads, and those like Spotify who aren’t.
Could a Facebook mobile advertising network one day enable Spotify to bring its ad-supported tier to mobile, for example? Like we said, speculative, but interesting.