Mark Zuckerberg knew clearly what he wanted to do when last year he decided to buy the Atlas server to Microsoft for 100 million dollars: to take a major step forward within the world of online advertising. This strategy will not only help his company face a giant such as Google, but also offer companies greater effectiveness in their marketing campaigns, which in Facebook were already starting to become, we dare say, obsolete.
We could say that the path the digital world is taking is clear. As Erik Johnson, Head of Atlas, says –and as numerous studies show–, people increasingly spend more time with their mobile devices and connect to social networks more than to any other medium. “This shift in consumer behavior has had a profound impact on a consumer’s path to purchase, both online and in stores,” explains Johnson.
This is why Facebook bought Atlas; because this server allows them to have the ability to offer any business advertising options on multiple platforms: mobile, through their social network, or via third party websites. Besides, it allows Facebook to “decentralize” from cookies, which currently are not sufficiently effective to track the tastes of users when they browse other websites, to display ads based on their preferences, and to measure the impact of sales. As explained in the social network’s blog “cookies do not work in mobile devices; they are not accurate for geographical segmentation, and they can’t be traced optimally across different browsers and technologies.” Facebook can now overcome these obstacles with Atlas.
With the data collected through the server, Facebook can create a record with the tastes and interests of each user, allowing advertisers to better identify their potential customers. As defined by Facebook, this is “people-centered marketing”.
Pepsi and Intel, the first to try Atlas
This service is suitable for any type of company, whether large, small or a startup, but for now it is going to be the agency Omnicom the first one to test Atlas, for the brands Pepsi and Intel.
The first thing Omnicom will see is an easy-to-use interface and the possibility to connect to the server to start using the data provided by Atlas in order to be able to analyze and inform its clients about their marketing campaigns across various platforms, measuring the results of ads not only on the social network, but also on different mobile devices and third party websites.
In this sense, Atlas is able to analyze the behavior of users in the social network and extract what ads they see, with which ones they interact and when, in order to gather all that information and link it to their Facebook profiles.
It is also important to note that Instagram is now integrated with Atlas to measure and verify ad impressions. Thus, advertisers such as Omnicom who are already running campaigns through Instagram will see the metrics of those ads also included in the reports provided by Atlas.
For now, advertisers will have access to basic demographic data such as age or gender. However, Atlas may eventually provide more information about the interests of users in order to better target advertising. This form of advertising based on people’s data will allow measuring the effectiveness of marketing campaigns, but it has also generated a new debate about the limits of online privacy.
Controversies aside, with Atlas companies can keep on learning from the reactions of customers to certain actions, being able to modify their advertising strategies accordingly to make them as effective as possible, always trying new things. Remember that the price of inaction is greater than the risks assumed by any marketing and advertising strategy.
The less known digital agency M8 is another company that has tested Atlas. On this occasion, this agency specialized in helping its clients to convey value messages to highly targeted audiences used Atlas to provide segmented ads to the customers of an airline flying between the United States and Latin America. Among other results, the campaign registered a relevant 15% increase of effectiveness after taking into account all the information provided by the Atlas server.
Finally, however, we must remember the fact that even if the audience sees your ads, this does not guarantee anything. Therefore, you have to offer promotions, coupons and other advantages for those who contact your business on the spot. The use of incentive actions is the final incentive to engage the user.