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移动应用

商业 - 科技

移动广告决定Facebook未来

Verne Kopytoff 2014年05月08日

无论是从比例来看,还是从绝对数字来看,移动广告对Facebook公司的重要性都在大幅上升。现在,这家公司又推出了一个新的可移动广告平台,希望挑战谷歌在移动广告领域的统治地位。

    社交网站Facebook靠在自己网站内销售移动广告已经赚得几十亿美元。如今,这家公司希望将移动广告生意扩展到自己网站以外,借此再赚几十亿美元。

    上周三,Facebook发布了一个移动广告网络,旨在协调、帮助其他移动应用发布者销售广告。这个移动广告网络利用Facebook收集的海量用户数据,帮助营销人员更加精准地投放广告。

    Facebook创始人兼首席执行官马克•扎克伯格在旧金山举行F8大会上向与会的开发者们表示:“这确实是我们第一次帮助大家从移动平台上赚钱。”

    Facebook这次推出的移动广告网络叫做Audience Network。有了它,即便人们不使用Facebook的应用,这家公司也能从中赚钱,有望借此开创一个潜力巨大的新业务。此举直指谷歌(Google),后者推出类似的广告网络已经有五年了,目前主导着移动广告领域。

    Facebook已经证明,它能在自己的社交网站上销售移动广告。短短几年内,移动业务收入已经从微不足道变成Facebook的主要业务。最近一个季度,Facebook的移动广告收入达到了13亿美元,占公司总收入的近60%。而就在一年前,移动业务收入还只有3.77亿美元,在总收入中的占比也只有30%。

    长期以来,谷歌一直是移动广告领域的老大。但随着Facebook的兴起,谷歌的统治地位开始动摇。据市场研究公司eMarketer称,今年,在市值310亿美元的移动广告市场上,谷歌的市场份额将从两年前的52%下降到47%。与此同时,Facebook的市场份额将接近22%,比2012年增加近三倍。

    本月早些时候,Twitter也开始帮助移动应用发布者销售广告。另外,还有一些规模较小的公司也在这个领域竞争,比如移动广告平台Millennial Media。不过,要想从谷歌、Facebook、Twitter等巨头的虎口中夺食,着实不易。

    移动广告的成功极为关键,因为人们花在台式机上的时间正在减少,而使用智能手机和平板电脑购物、玩游戏、浏览新闻的时间越来越长。eMarketer称,今年,美国成年人平均每天花在移动设备上的时间将达到三小时左右;而就在2013年,这个数字还只有半小时左右;与此同时,人们花在台式机和笔记本电脑上的时间将减少到2小时12分钟,比去年减少7分钟。

    人们早就料到Facebook会决定帮助其它公司销售移动广告,不过,它会采取渐进式策略,还是会迅速推进,目前尚不清楚。Facebook表示,它初期将只销售鼓励人们下载或更频繁的使用某款应用的移动广告。未来,营销人员将可以购买其他种类的广告(比如横幅广告)。衡量这类广告的成败更困难。

    扎克伯格的宏伟计划并不总是能成功。这些年来,扎克伯克登台推销过不少最终失败的新产品。比如,预置了社交网络服务的智能手机Facebook Home目前为止还没有激起人们的热情。这家公司于2010年推出的Facebook电子邮件服务也乏人问津。最近,Facebook已经决定关闭这项服务。

    不过,这次可能不一样。在本次F8大会上,扎克伯格的重点放在了营收上,这与他一贯的做派大相径庭。在往届F8大会上,扎克伯格曾宣布大举收购营收微薄或者根本没有营收的新创企业(比如斥资190亿美元收购移动通讯公司WhatsApp;再比如斥资20亿美元收购虚拟现实领域的先锋企业Oculus VR)。

    扎克伯格在F8大会上登台现身的时间较短,其间他对大举收购的事闭口不谈。相反,扎克伯格和他的团队尽全力传递的信息是,Facebook希望更好地服务于围绕它的社交网络进行产品开发的开发者们,同时为用户提供更好的整体体验。为了打消人们对隐私问题的顾虑,Facebook透露,正在测试“匿名登录”形式,帮助人们不留痕迹地尝试第三方应用程序。

    扎克伯格说:“人们希望对如何分享自身信息拥有更大的控制权,特别是在应用程序上。”换言之,不让用户对他们所认为的半私人数据享有足够的控制权不利于Facebook的业务发展。

    正如Facebook宣布的许多项目一样,这个项目也还处在进行的过程之中。(财富中文网)

    译者:项航

    Facebook has made billions of dollars selling mobile ads within its social network. Now, it hopes to make billions more by selling mobile ads elsewhere, too.

    On Wednesday, Facebook (FB) unveiled a mobile ad network that coordinates and places ads for publishers of other mobile applications. The system taps the vast trove of data that Facebook collects about its users to help to help marketers better target their messages.

    "This is really the first time that we're going to help you monetize seriously on mobile," founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg told the audience of developers at his company's F8 conference in San Francisco.

    Facebook's mobile ad network, called Audience Network, opens a potentially huge new business for the company by letting it make money even when people use applications other than its own. The push also directly challenges Google (GOOG), which has had a similar ad network for five years and currently dominates mobile advertising.

    Facebook has proven that it can sell mobile ads on its own social network. In just a few years, mobile revenue has gone from being an insignificant part of its business to being the cornerstone. In the latest quarter, Facebook took in $1.3 billion in revenue from mobile advertising, or nearly 60% of the company's overall revenue. A year ago, mobile accounted for $377 million, or 30% of total revenue.

    The iron grip of Google, long the largest player in mobile advertising, is slipping as Facebook ramps up. Google will grab a 47% share of the $31 billion mobile ad market this year, down from 52% two years ago, according to eMarketer. Facebook's share is expected to approach 22%, or nearly four times greater than in 2012.

    Earlier this month, Twitter (TWTR) also started selling ads on behalf of mobile publishers. A number of smaller companies also compete in the space, such as Millennial Media, which faces a tough challenge competing against such giants.

    Success in mobile ads is critical because people are spending less time on their desktop computers and more time staring at their smartphones and tablets to shop, play games, and follow the latest news headlines. U.S. adults will spend close to three hours daily on their mobile devices this year, up close to half an hour from 2013, according to eMarketer. Time spent on desktop and laptop computers will drop to two hours and 12 minutes, seven minutes less than last year.

    Facebook's decision to sell mobile ads for others had been expected for some time, but questions remained about whether the company would take a gradual approach or move in quickly. Facebook says it first will only sell mobile ads that encourage people to install an app or to use an app more frequently. In the future, marketers will be able to buy other kinds of marketing messages (such as banner ads) that are more difficult to measure in terms of a campaign's success.

    Zuckerberg's grandiose plans haven't always panned out, and over the years, he has appeared onstage to pitch a number of new products that, in the end, turned out to be duds. For example, people have yet to warm up to Facebook Home, a smartphone larded with social networking services. Nor did they flock to Facebook e-mail, which the company introduced in 2010 and then recently decided to shut down.

    This time may be different. Zuckerberg's focus on revenue at F8 is a big departure from his previous outings, in which he announced immense purchases of startups that make little or no money (the mobile messaging company WhatsApp for $19 billion; the virtual reality pioneer Oculus VR for $2 billion).

    During his relatively brief appearance on the F8 stage, Zuckerberg never mentioned the spending spree. Instead, he and his colleagues tried to hammer home the message that Facebook wants to better serve the developers who build products around its social network and to create a better overall experience for users. To counter concerns about privacy, Facebook revealed that it is testing a form of "anonymous login" for people to try out third-party apps without leaving a trail.

    "People want more control over how they share their information, especially with apps," Zuckerberg said. In other words, not giving people sufficient control over data they consider to be semi-private is bad for business.

    Like many of its announcements, it's all still a work in progress.

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