Facebook's Next Step: Huge Simplification In Mobile

Facebook ad sales boss Carolyn Everson

Since Facebook has started to recover from its disappointing May 2012 initial public offering, the number one story about the company is that it has finally “figured out” mobile.
But if you ask the company’s head of ad sales, Carolyn Everson, Facebook still has a ways to go on the mobile front.

In June, Facebook announced it would consolidate its 27 different advertising products into a number about half that size.

It was then that the company dumped the widely despised “sponsored story,” which auto-generated Newsfeed advertisements from the pages users “liked,” in favour of adding this so-called “social context” to all of its ads.

Facebook also streamlined its product offerings by getting rid of unnecessary page post features, like ones that created a separate place for users to answer questions (which they could already do by leaving a comment) or created a separate link for users to accept a product offer (which they could already do by clicking on the photo of a page post).

Everson said that up until then, the company had multiple advertising products that did the same thing. Now, she says, Facebook must continue working to eliminate confusion and make itself a more accessible partner for advertisers.

“We were tough and confusing to work with,” Everson said Wednesday at the Smarter Mobile Marketing conference in New York City. “We’re trying to simplify our products and we are relentless about that.”

Everson also said the company has work to do on what she called “the measurement front,” saying that improving the company’s analytics was one of the reasons it purchased Microsoft’s Atlas ad server in February.

“Forget about what the stock is doing, forget what people are saying, by no means would we say we have everything figured out,” Everson said.

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