Facebook’s Rise in Advertising: Tuesday at Town Hall

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Tuesday in Town Hall brought advertising masterminds from both sides of the coin together for a panel to address the biggest disruptor in the industry today: mobile. In wake of a recent announcement from Facebook that the social media platform would be announcing new partnerships and measurement tools for advertisers to better utilize their metrics, Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg joined in a panel with P&G’s Marc Pritchard and GM’s Mary Barra to discuss how the internet social spot has gone on to become the biggest pool of opportunity for advertisers.

Sandberg announced Tuesday that Facebook now works with 4 million advertisers, observing how that growth is in large part because of their working more with small businesses.  Sandberg explained that because very few small businesses have websites, let alone phone apps, Facebook has become a sort of “mobile solution” for those businesses who want to have an online presence. And with statistics such as users admitting to checking their phones over 150 times per day, Sandberg says, “since people are on their phones all day – you as advertisers have an opportunity to sell your products all day.”

So with a surplus of marketing opportunity on seemingly endless platforms and with technology continually improving at an exponential rate, how do brands keep a cohesive message, say, with platforms like mobile? Pritchard said all it requires is for a brand to take a big step back, and to gain some perspective.

“Half of the world can now access the internet – there is so much technology out there. We like to step back and think of it as a wide creative canvas upon which we’ll create our marketing masterpiece,” Pritchard said. “It needs to look like one, cohesive brand. So across mobile, long form video, print ads, we think of it like painting across the whole brand.”

The panelists also discussed Facebook’s rising presence into the advertising world, and how despite wary beginnings from advertisers, the media company has gone on to lead the pack in advertising innovation.

Mary Barra referred to the partnership between GM and Facebook, most recently evident when they utilized Facebook Live, the first brand to do so, to reveal the newest Chevrolet. Barra explained how typically, new model reveals are for the car enthusiasts who seek out and attend car shows and demonstrations. However, using Facebook Live for the reveal offered that access for those enthusiasts, and to a far greater global reach, making enthusiasts out of unlikely viewers.

Looking to the future, Sandberg said Facebook has its sights set on artificial intelligence and virtual reality. More so, the brand hopes to increase connectivity by reaching the populations who are still offline, and opening the dialogue of gender equality by using their global platforms. Sandberg commended a recent P&G advertising campaign which suggested men do more heavy lifting in their home lives. The #ShareTheLoad video was created to announce a laundry detergent launch in India, with a message that women shouldn’t be the only in a household to do the laundry.

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