Warc, 2 May 2014
SAN FRANCISCO: Facebook's development as a mobile business has taken another step with the launch of a new advertising network that can serve ads to third-party apps.
The Audience Network product was unveiled at a developers' conference in San Francisco and effectively offers all the features of existing Facebook ads to other apps, including the targeting and measurement facilities. As well as banner and interstitial ads, it delivers a native format.
"The mobile ecosystem needs a way to deliver these kind of native, personalised ads to people, and I'm glad that we can deliver more than one million active advertisers to your apps," Facebook's chief executive Mark Zuckerberg told developers.
"This is the first time we're going to help you to monetise in a serious way on mobile," he added, in remarks reported by the BBC.
TechCrunch said that the new product would sit well with Twitter's MoPub mobile ad exchange. It explained that MoPub was not a network but rather a tool to help publishers manage multiple ad networks which now included Facebook's Audience Network.
It quoted Twitter's vp of Product for Revenue who said that Audience Network "fits naturally within MoPub's ad network mediation platform".
Zuckerberg also used the occasion to outline a wider cultural shift within the company, Wired reported, moving away from a 'hacker' ethos to a more customer-centric one.
"The hacker culture is focused on us, the way we do things," said Zuckerberg, "it's not really that focused on the people we serve."
Over the coming ten years he aimed to "build a culture of loving the people we serve that's as strong if not stronger than our culture of hacking".
This process had already started with a new set of privacy practices that give users greater control over the data that apps can see and over what their friends can do with shared posts. Users will also be able to connect anonymously to third party apps using Facebook.
Data sourced from Facebook, BBC, Techcrunch, Wired; additional content by Warc staff