Facebook Chief Operating Officer Sheryl Sandberg used some of her time during the social network’s fourth-quarter earnings call Wednesday to offer statistics and specific examples in support of the company’s advertising growth.
Facebook users who noticed an unusually strong presence by retail giant Walmart on their mobile news feeds over the Thanksgiving holiday weekend, including Black Friday and through Cyber Monday, weren’t imagining things: The Wall Street Journal reported that over a 72-hour period, Facebook and Walmart rolled out the largest mobile campaign in the retailer’s history, consisting of 50 million ads on the social network.
Brands on Facebook have been advertising aggressively during this holiday season, knowing that people are willing to buy. New figures released by Kenshoo Social show that people are also more willing to like, comment on, and share Facebook ads around this time. The study found that the return on ad spend for U.S. retailers from Facebook ads hit $10.95 on Cyber Monday, and direct sales revenue through Facebook ads on that day spiked to 129 percent over the daily seasonal average.
Facebook commerce provider Ecwid has a client base made up of mostly small and midsized businesses, so it came as no surprise that Ecwid touted the Black Friday and Cyber Monday Facebook success of those types of businesses.
As millions of people opened their wallets last weekend for Black Friday and Cyber Monday deals, brands’ Facebook pages also experienced success. Walmart, which was bombarded on Facebook with criticism for opening at 8 p.m. on Thanksgiving, was actually the most successful brand on the social network during the two shopping days, according to Socialbakers. Amazon, Macy’s, and Toys “R” Us also earned kudos for fan growth and engagement.
The holiday shopping season also marks the heaviest advertising, marketing, and promotional period of the calendar year, and Facebook is no exception, using the end of the year to push advertising on the social network.
With Black Friday just days away, mentions on Facebook containing words related to holiday shopping are up 160 percent compared with one month ago, while mentions of Christmas are up 157 percent, according to the social network.