Facebook and Google, Two Giants in Digital Ads, Seek More

Madison Avenue is still the heart of the advertising business. But on the first day of Advertising Week, a top industry convention in Manhattan, it was clear how much influence resides in Silicon Valley.

Facebook and Google, two digital advertising powerhouses, took the stage to introduce services meant to lure an even bigger portion of digital marketing dollars.

Facebook introduced a tool that allows advertisers to buy video ads using a ratings metric similar to one used for buying television commercials. The goal is to make it easier for advertisers to plan and buy ad campaigns across television and Facebook. The combined performance of the television and Facebook ads will be measured by Nielsen Digital Ad Ratings from Nielsen, the research company.

“It’s essentially giving marketers the ability to buy Facebook in the same way they bought TV,” Carolyn Everson, vice president for global marketing solutions at Facebook, said at a presentation. “We believe Facebook and TV can be very complementary.”

With the new tool, Facebook is aggressively pursuing television advertisers, many of whom are increasingly seeking ways to reach consumers on mobile devices. According to Nielsen, 88 percent of tablet owners and 86 percent of smartphone owners use devices while watching television.

Facebook also announced it was introducing mobile polling to let advertisers assess the effectiveness of their campaigns on mobile devices.

During a presentation on Monday, Google announced a product that will let marketers target ad campaigns to consumers using their email addresses. The program, called Customer Match, lets companies upload a list of customers’ email addresses gleaned, for example, from its loyalty membership program. The company can show specific ads to these customers when they are signed into Google.

“The idea is that you combine the pinpoint intent of something like search with information that you have about your customers,” said Sridhar Ramaswamy, senior vice president for advertising and commerce at Google. The product will let advertisers show customers ad campaigns if they have not recently shopped for the company’s products.

Facebook and Google are behemoths in online advertising. In the United States, Facebook is projected to have $7.7 billion in total digital ad revenue in 2015, and Google is projected to have $23.3 billion, according to the research company eMarketer.

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