Facebook Inc.’s biggest advertisers have boosted spending by at least 10-fold in the past year as the social network crossed the half-billion user mark, becoming more alluring to marketers that want to reach a broad online audience.
Some advertisers have increased spending by as much as 20- fold or more, Facebook Chief Operating Officer Sheryl Sandberg said in an interview. The site’s ad prices have held steady even as user growth fueled a surge in inventory, or pages that can carry ads, she said.
“Two years ago the big brands were experimenting with us,” said Sandberg, 40, declining to identify which customers were spending more. “They started buying with us a year ago. Now, they’re going big.” As a closely held company, Facebook doesn’t disclose revenue figures.
Those revenue numbers for 2010 have been rumored to eclipse the $1 billion mark so something good is happening at Facebook.
The article also discusses that an IPO is unlikely before 2012 which is intentional so that Facebook can acquire some more firepower to help get more revenue out its expanding user base.
The company plans to make more purchases to recruit leaders and build features to keep users glued to its pages — and ads running on them — longer. While Facebook has mainly focused on startups with smaller staffs, it may pursue bigger transactions, said Vaughan Smith, director of corporate development.
“As we get bigger and our platform gets more stable, I fully expect that we will be doing more significant acquisitions,” Smith, 43, said in an interview. “This is working for us, and it’s working for the people that we’re acquiring.”
Wow, if you thought that Facebook was unbearable with its arrogance as of late it seems safe to say that we ain’t seen nothing yet.
The potential for growth appears to have few limits on it unless privacy concerns and silly ownership claims slow the machine down in the court system. While I am not a huge fan of how Facebook does business, I certainly hope that regulation and legal eagles hoping to hit the jackpot don’t determine the fate of Facebook. I don’t wish that on anyone.
So as advertisers continue to grow their efforts with Facebook it seems pretty clear that acquisitions will be the main focus of the company so that they can keep pace with demand and offer more advertising options in the future.
The company buys small startups — typically with a dozen or fewer employees — to gain entrepreneurs who can become future leaders, Smith said. Chief Technology Officer Bret Taylor came from FriendFeed, acquired last year.
Facebook will keep up the acquisition pace and may pursue larger, more complex transactions, Smith said. He plans to hire another corporate development executive, adding to the one person helping him clinch deals now.
If you have something that could be of interest to Facebook now’s the time to truly strike while the iron’s hot. We live in a very fickle industry that is part of a larger and even more unpredictable economy so it’s truly time to ‘make hay while the sun is shining’.
How are you using Facebook? Are you increasing your spend with the site? Can you get yourself on the “To be acquired” list?