Corporate Eye

Facebook Dominates Display Advertising Impressions

display-ads_monitor_and_keyboardIn a new report from comScore, data for the third quarter of 2010 shows that Facebook serves twice as many display ad impressions to the U.S. Internet audience as the next closest display ad publisher, Yahoo! sites.

These statistics are quite different from first quarter 2010 data, which showed Facebook with just a 16.1% share of display ads published versus Yahoo! sites with 12.1%.  In fact, comScore points out that “Facebook now accounts for 1 in 4 online display ads in the U.S.”

Take a look at the market share data for the top 10 online display ad publishers for the third quarter of 2010 below:

  • = 23.1%
  • Yahoo! Sites = 11.0%
  • Microsoft Sites = 5.0%
  • Fox Interactive Media = 3.8%
  • Google Sites = 2.7%
  • AOL LLC = 2.5%
  • Turner Network = 1.7%
  • Glam Media = 1.0%
  • eBay = 0.7%
  • ESPN = 0.6%

The change came not so much from Facebook stealing market share from other online display ad publishers but rather because the number of ads served stayed relatively constant for most publishers, except for Facebook which jumped from over 176 billion display ad impressions during the first quarter to over 297 billion display ad impressions during the third quarter of 2010.  Considering that the total number of display ad impressions during the first quarter was 1.09 trillion and the total during the third quarter was 1.28 trillion, it seems that the overall growth has come primarily from Facebook.

The third quarter 2010 report also shows that the top display advertisers haven’t changed much over the first nine months of 2010.  No single company or brand dominates display advertising, but AT&T does continue to hold the top spot with 1.7% share of the display ad impressions during the third quarter of 2010, which is down from its first quarter share of 2.4%.  In fact, share of display ad impressions shifted downward for most of the top 10 display advertisers when comparing first quarter to third quarter results demonstrating one of two things: either companies lowered their display advertising investments as 2010 progressed or more companies entered the display advertising game, spreading market share further.

Two final points of interest that I want to point out come directly from the comScore press release:

  • The average U.S. Internet user was delivered more than 6,000 display ads over the course of the quarter.
  • 109 different advertisers delivered at least 1 billion display ad impressions during the quarter, up from 76 last year.

That’s a lot of display ads, and the trick to success is becoming more and more a matter of finding your niche audience and getting them to notice and remember your display ad.  Frankly, it’s a good thing brand managers have social media marketing and content marketing to turn to, because display advertising is a crowded place!

Image: stock.xchng

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Susan Gunelius is the author of 10 marketing, social media, branding, copywriting, and technology books, and she is President & CEO of KeySplash Creative, Inc., a marketing communications company. She also owns Women on Business, an award-wining blog for business women. She is a featured columnist for and, and her marketing-related articles have appeared on websites such as,,, and more. She has over 20 years of experience in the marketing field having spent the first decade of her career directing marketing programs for some of the largest companies in the world, including divisions of AT&T and HSBC. Today, her clients include large and small companies around the world and household brands like Citigroup, Cox Communications, Intuit, and more. Susan is frequently interviewed about marketing and branding by television, radio, print, and online media organizations, and she speaks about these topics at events around the world. You can connect with her on Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, or Google+.

Great post Susan, we have been testing the impression ads on Facebook and we paid $0.70 per 1000 impressions and only got around 0.005% conversion. Very low quality of impression rate.

So we tested the pay per click $0.70 per click. Strangely the conversion was higher and the quality of lead was better. I think Facebook definitely prefer the ‘Pay Per Click’ option

Any tips on Facebook Advertising would be great.

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