Nick Burcher, Head of Social Media MediaCom EMEA and Marisa Vaccari, US Social Media Director for MediaCom recently joined Facebook's developer conference to find out what's coming next - and what advertisers need to know.
30 April 2014, San Francisco: The f8 Developer conference saw Mark Zuckerberg and other Facebook leads announce several new Facebook initiatives. Although primarily aimed at developers and Facebook-centric businesses, f8 was also used to unveil some new advertiser offerings, too – including new insights, new content opportunities and new ad formats.
The f8 event reflected Facebook’s coming-of-age; indeed, in his keynote Mark Zuckerberg spoke of how Facebook’s 10th birthday and his impending 30th (!) have made him stop and reflect. Echoing our longstanding MediaCom mantra of ‘People first, better results’, he spoke of how Facebook now needs to put ‘People first’ in everything it does, whether that’s thinking about what effect changes will have on the developer community or giving Facebook users more control over their own data.
On the surface, f8 was all about mobile and developers with initiatives such asAppLinks, Anonymous Login and the Facebook Audience Network notably grabbing the headlines, but the underlying narrative was about the system. Facebook’s ‘cross-platform platform’ play was more than Facebook trying to make Facebook work better; it was about Facebook trying to make everything work better – and across all devices.
The lion’s share of Facebook’s advertising revenue now comes from mobile and Zuckerberg displayed an innate understanding about how everything is connected. f8 announcements now see Facebook sitting above and beneath the mobile app ecosystem and if Facebook can make the f8 announcements stick, there is a win-win-win for them here. Happy developers = a more vibrant platform = more engaged users = more potential for advertising revenue. This three way see-saw is a delicate balancing act, but f8 had something for everyone.
Developers have been offered a package that will help them ‘Build – Grow – Monetise’; users have been offered more control and better privacy; and advertisers have been offered enhanced data insight, new ad formats and new inventory with improved targeting options – all the while furthering the overall potential of mobile as a marketing and advertising platform.
f8 was an event that attendees couldn’t help but be impressed by: slick, well-organised and with a variety of genuinely exciting announcements. Facebook’s f8 conference gave mobile advertising a further shot and all client’s should be thinking about not only their future mobile plans but also thinking about how they can be powered by social and driven by the new initiatives unveiled at f8. Facebook has already revealed that there will be another f8 event in 2015 and while 2014 was all about mobile, perhaps 2015 will be all about video?