Facebook to shut down advertising technology division Atlas

Anne Freier | November 22, 2016

Mobile Advertising

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Facebook has begun to retire its Atlas advertising technology division, with ad-serving to follow shortly. The company confirmed that it would instead focus on its ad measurement offers.
Facebook shuts down Atlas
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Source: thedrum.com
Originally acquired from Microsoft in 2013, Facebook had big plans with Atlas to build its own demand-side platform and compete more efficiently with rival Google. However, the response has been rather slow and publishers seem to be more interested in the measurement features and Facebook’s huge audience data sets. That’s exactly where the social media giant wants to refocus Atlas.
Erik Johnson, Head of Atlas, Facebook, reveals:
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“Marketers would evaluate [Atlas] and say they liked the measurement side but didn’t see the need to go to the effort of switching ad servers. We decided the best way for Atlas to service clients is to focus on measurement.”

Hence, slimming down the ad tech platform to focus in on what clients want is a logical step. In addition, much of inventory is now first-party on mobile, replacing third-party provision of ad serving.
Selling mobile adverts through Audience Network has turned out to be a very lucrative business for Facebook. Refocusing to sell more ads as opposed to ad tech which helps marketers shop around for their own ads is a smart move.
However, that shouldn’t mean Facebook isn’t committed to cross-device marketing. On the contrary, such data is valuable in providing the right measurement tools its marketers need.

“Along the way [the ad tech industry] lost sight of what was in the best interest of the advertiser. We see huge growth in fraud because it’s so easy to hide behind the technology. We don’t think that’s good for the ecosystem,” Johnson adds.

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