Google's Ad Chief Referred Questions To Facebook At His Own Ad Event

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Neal Mohan

Google / YouTube

Neal Mohan at the Google ads event yesterday.

Google unveiled a bunch of new upgrades to its DoubleClick Digital Marketing suite yesterday but a lot of people ended up talking about what isn't in there: The ability to buy ads on Facebook.

Neal Mohan, Google's VP-display advertising, admitted that even with Wildfire (Google's social media marketing management acquisition) now tied in to DoubleClick, Google remains locked out of Facebook ads. Ad Age reported:

“Right now, as you know, Wildfire doesn’t have a paid social tool nor does it have direct access to Facebook or the other social platforms that are out there,” Mr. Mohan said. That leaves Google’s advertisers to flock to competitors like Adobe or smaller pure-plays like Optimal and TBG Digital for their Facebook and Twitter buys.

Google’s "demand-side platform" (a web ad buying unit), DoubleClick Bid Manager, is also locked out of Facebook Exchange, Facebook's new cookie-targeting ad exchange. Ad Age noted that "Mr. Mohan referred a question about Google's inability to access Facebook's retargeting exchange to the social network."

Ouch.

That's embarrassing for Google: The company is promoting its new, enhanced web ad capabilities at its own event — and ends up telling people to ask Facebook why Google's adtech clients can't buy ads on Facebook.

Wildfire will help monitor and analyze how free posts on Facebook's brand pages help advertising bought elsewhere on the web. But as Facebook's directory page for Wildfire shows, the company does not have permission from Facebook to buy ads on Facebook.

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Darren Herman Google Facebook

Darren Herman

The situation appears to indicate that Facebook has a strict policy regarding Google: Even though Google (via clients using DoubleClick) is one of the largest distributors of ads on the web, those advertisers won't be allowed inside Facebook unless they use a non-Google company to do their buying. AdExchanger said:

Google's owned-and-operated properties are where Facebook can never venture. Likewise, Google can’t get inside Facebook. This could mean a coming war in the (mobile) ad network space for the short-, mid- and long-tails. Or does it come down to the best yield and performance delivered through the competing ad exchanges?

Currently, Google is winning that war. Darren Herman, the chief digital media officer at the New York based full service agency kbs+  recently compiled global web adspend data and found that Google controls Google 41% of the market, whereas Facebook has just 4%.

Disclosure: The author owns stock in both Facebook and Google.



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