Facebook announced its latest quarterly financial results last night, with CEO Mark Zuckerberg describing them as “a strong start to the year” despite falling just short of its prediction for revenues in the first three months of the year. The company claimed that was more about currency fluctuations than any problem with its business, and the numbers do seem to support that.
Facebook had 1.44bn monthly active users (MAUs) at the end of March, including an average of 936m daily active users (DAUs) that month. The social network also reported mobile MAUs and DAUs: 1.25bn and 798m respectively – with 581m people ONLY accessing it from mobile devices. Facebook’s revenues rose 42% year-on-year to $3.54bn in the first quarter, with ads accounting for $3.32bn of that, and mobile taking a 73% share of the latter figure. Facebook posted a net profit of $512m in Q1.
There was a new milestone for Facebook native video viewing too: 4bn daily video views, up from the 3bn figure announced a quarter ago. “More than 75% of global video views on Facebook occur on mobile, and we believe mobile video will become more important to marketers over time,” said COO Sheryl Sandberg in Facebook’s earnings call last night. “We expect more marketers to put mobile video at the heart of their campaigns in the future and we’re well-positioned to drive this shift.”
Sandberg declined, when asked by an analyst, to talk in more detail about how much money marketers are spending on video ads. “It’s still early days and we’re very focused on quality and it’s worth noting that not all of the revenue from video is incremental, because the video ads take the place of other ads that we would have served into News Feed,” she said.
Music marketers are adopting a suitably cautious approach: right now, posting a video from a page can yield a much more impressive reach than a regular post, but most marketers are keenly aware that this will assuredly not be the case forever: at some point, the organic reach is likely to be dialled down as the video advertising business ramps up.