Facebook's Q2 Success Means FBX May Not Go Mobile

The final panel at last week’s OMMA RTB in Los Angeles focused on the Facebook Exchange (FBX), and a good portion of the conversation revolved around mobile. By now you’ve heard that Facebook’s revenue soared in Q2 because of mobile ads, and the panelists debated whether or not FBX would ever include mobile inventory.

Most of the panelists don’t think it’s going to happen. Why fix something that isn’t broken?

“I desire it, but I’m not sure it will happen,” said Christopher Hansen, president at Netmining. “It’s too much of a revenue driver [as is]."

Amrita Sahasrabudhe, director of marketing at Aramark, thinks it will happen. She’s just not sure how.



“I think Facebook is going to have to be very creative in mobile [on FBX],” Amrita said. Kelly Wrather, senior content marketing manager at Kenshoo, echoed Sahasrabudhe by saying, “It’s not a question of when, but how.”

The conversation also touched on some of Facebook’s largest rivals -- Google and Twitter -- and how their approaches to building tech stacks have differed.

Drew Huening, associate director of social channel at VivaKi, pointed out that Google's strategy revolves around acquisition, while Facebook “insists on building things from the ground up.” Twitter, it would seem, is following Google’s footsteps, if it’s recent acquisitions of TapCommerce and MoPub are any indication. (Though that’s not to say Facebook isn’t willing to buy to get what it wants -- it recently acquired programmatic video ad platform LiveRail.)

It's intriguing that Twitter is going the retargeting/RTB route with mobile, while Facebook is holding off. Meanwhile, Google is working hard to create "premium" video marketplaces (read: Google buys Twitch), which will lend themselves to selling ads, whether or mobile or desktop devices, via "programmatic direct." It's noteworthy because it shows that the various popular trading methods -- programmatic, direct, or a hybrid model -- are all viable.

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