Facebook: “Were Only One Per Cent Finished”

“As a business, we have the belief that were only one per cent finished,” said Claire Valoti, joint head of sales at Facebook, speaking at Mobile Marketing Live.

Thats a fairly astounding statement from a company of Facebooks size – it has 24m daily active users in the UK alone, 20m of whom are mobile users, and one out of every four minutes spent on mobile is using either Facebook or Instagram. 

But looking at the companys recent activity, it makes sense. Look at the founding of the Internet.org program, an attempt to get the rest of the world online and – being a little cynical – expanding its potential userbase. Or the constant flurry of changes to its mobile ad offering, something which Valoti said could be attributed to its famous Move Fast and Break Things mantra.

Scale and targeting

Valoti said that, in her old life as managing director of O2 Media and subsequently Weve, she used to say that scale wasnt all that important. But working at Facebook has changed her mind on that front: “The beauty of having 1.1bn users is that you can do granular targeting, but still work on a huge scale.” 

She cited some of the highly specific profiles Facebook can offer to advertisers, like iPad-owning women in the US with an interest in online gaming, which still total in the millions. And its this targeting which is possibly the main advantage Facebook has when it comes to advertising. 

“Were able to link users identity across channels – both existing and new, whether its smartwatches or Google Glass – because theyre always using the same registered login,” said Valoti. “The more complex and fragmented the world becomes, the more important that is.”


In the next year, Valoti confirmed, Facebook will introduce ads to Instagram, though she couldnt say more more than that at this point. But she hinted that the form it will take might be completely different to Facebooks offering:

“Its a very different platform,” said Valoti. “On Instagram, its often a case of the best image wins – so brands can promote themselves without ever having to pay for advertising.”