Facebook quadruples number of advertisers over a year

Facebook's vice-president of global sales Mike Murphy has said that it more than quadrupled the number of its advertiser clients since the start of 2009 and claimed it has become "absolutely core to marketing campaigns".

The world's biggest social networking site, which has offices dotted around the world to serve its advertising customers - including in the UK - did not divulge actual figures.

But Murphy did say that it has doubled its number of sales people over 2009 compared to 2008.

In an interview with Bloomberg, Murphy said: "We're very well positioned as people come out of this current economic situation. What we've become is absolutely core to marketing campaigns."

According to US advertising data supplied by ComScore, it ran 176 billion display ads in the first quarter of 2010 in the US alone, up from 70.7 billion in the previous year's quarter.

It also grew its share of the US display market from 11% in the fourth quarter of 2009, to 16% in the first quarter of this year, putting it ahead of rival Yahoo!, whose share fell from 13% to 12% in the same period.

Examples of global brands that have exploited the social network's extensive consumer base include Adidas, Procter & Gamble and Barbour. Just yesterday Marketing.co.uk reported that Coca-Cola launched a pan-European content hub campaign on Facebook to support its Diet Coke brand.

At the tail end of last month, Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg responded to criticism over its use of members' private data by changing its privacy settings.

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