Facebook Announced DSP with Atlas

In 2013 Face­book acquired Atlas, an ad serving plat­form, from Microsoft Corp. In the first week of October 2014, Face­book announced they will be releas­ing a new version of the plat­form that offers adver­tis­ers the ability to use Face­book user data as target­ing in their own Demand Side Plat­form (DSP). While other DSPs use cookies to approx­i­mate data of a given device, Face­book has access to cross device and real world data based on indi­vid­ual customers’ profiles, behav­iors, and trans­ac­tions.

The combined data from Face­book and Atlas is monu­men­tal and with the capa­bil­i­ties out of the gate to change our indus­try and impact the way agen­cies and compa­nies manage media, espe­cially mobile media. Since cookies are not able to work on a mobile device (how the other DSPs measure), the ability to use real world data (that’s even more accu­rate than cookie data!) on a mobile device gives Atlas an advan­tage over other ad serving plat­forms. Addi­tion­ally, Face­book can see cross device behav­ior of users logged in to their Face­book accounts, once again connect­ing the dots across devices. Since customers are choos­ing mobile devices (includ­ing tablets) more and more over desk­tops and laptops, this announce­ment is guar­an­teed to shake up the adver­tis­ing and digital media indus­try.

Another added value is the DSP’s promise to be able to track conver­sions and actions, poten­tially even offline actions, back to the user via email addresses provided in-store. This could open the oppor­tu­nity of retar­get­ing across devices, wher­ever the user is active online. The user could make a purchase at an offline POS, provide an email address, and then can be retar­geted online from that same retailer.

While all of this is excit­ing, the biggest part of the story is the accu­racy. Cross plat­form, includ­ing offline, accu­rate track­ing tied to a Face­book ID where users are spend­ing exten­sive amounts of time and sharing large amounts of personal data can cause big changes in the media indus­try.

Check back in for a follow-up blog high­light­ing the poten­tial impact of Atlas!

Here’s a link to the announce­ment from the Wall Street Journal.

Co-Authored by Jillian Ahee and Omri Levin