Facebook Inc. (FB) is expanding efforts to deliver targeted advertising, changing how promotions show up in users’ news feeds and testing marketing messages that appear outside its application for wireless devices.
With more than 1 billion users, Facebook is seeking new ways to bolster its mobile-ad efforts as consumers shift to smartphones and tablets.
Chief Executive Officer Mark Zuckerberg has boosted efforts to attract members and marketers to Facebook’s services, where promotions are interspersed with updates and photos. While mobile made up 41 percent of ad revenue in the second quarter, up from 30 percent in the previous period, Facebook remains a distant No. 2 in a market led by Google Inc. (GOOG), EMarketer Inc. said. The updates are aimed at improving the odds that a user will see the right ad at the right time, the company said.
“When deciding which ad to show to which groups of people, we are placing more emphasis on feedback we receive from people about ads, including how often people report or hide an ad,” the company said. “That means people should see ads that are more relevant to them, and fewer ads that they might not be interested in.” The changes apply to users accessing the social network from mobile devices as well as via Web browsers.
Facebook shares rose 1.7 percent to $51.24, a record. The stock is up 93 percent since July 24, when the Menlo Park, California-based company reported earnings that topped analysts’ estimates. Sales of ads on wireless devices on track to surpass revenue from desktop computers, Facebook said.
Facebook also said it’s testing promotions outside its own mobile services, the second such effort. It ran a similar experiment about a year ago, something the company called a “small test” at the time.
“We’re currently running a second test to show Facebook ads off Facebook in mobile apps and on mobile sites,” the company said in an e-mailed statement. “Our goal is to improve both targeting and relevancy of the ads people see. Since this is a test, we don’t have additional details to share.”
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