Social Media Ad History

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Social media have been one of the parts of main modern marketing strategy and overall digital advertising market, and more and more people are willing to spend their time on different social media, such as Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Snapchat, and so on. And social advertising appears to mass more frequent than before. The market did not exist just a decade ago, and it is projected to generate $11 billion in revenue by 2017. Currently, social advertising has been ubiquity, but it is also important to know how social advertising grew up.


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In 2005, Facebook launched its first ad, and it got $50 million in ad revenue. And by the following year, Facebook launched its newsfeed and LinkedIn joined the team of posting advertising. And Facebook increased its speed on its ad “feature”, it publishes the self-service ads platform & pages, and Facebook reaches $150 million in ad revenue in 2008. In the same year, Twitter introduced the hashtag feature, and it helps brands to create their own hashtag so that they can get more interaction with their consumers. Two years later, Twitter launched its promoted tweets and promoted accounts, and Facebook gained $1 billion in the ad. In 2011, Twitter passes $100 million in ad revenue and reached 100 million users. Since social media start to earn more in social advertising, there are more social media choose to let companies post advertising. The year 2012 can be called social advertising year for social media, and Alexis Madrigal coined the term “Dark Social” to describe it. Facebook launched mobile ads and announced the Instagram acquisition, LinkedIn launched an ads API (Application Program Interface), and Pinterest announced its business accounts. In 2013, the “Dark Social” becomes trackable, and LinkedIn launched mobile ads and Instagram launched sponsored photos & video. Social ad pend becomes 15% of total digital ad spend in 2014. Facebook announced autoplay video ad and Snapchat launched its first ad. As different social media start to promote ad to their users, their revenue increase year by year. Twitter launched its mobile video in 2015, and Pinterest reached $100 million, Instagram reached $500 million, and Snapchat reached $50 million in ad revenue this year.

Social media are still trying to access more ad appropriately to their users and people will see more forms of ads show up on social media.




A Brief Hisotry of Social Advertising. (n.d.). Unified. Retrieved from

Hutchinson, A. (2016). A brief history of social advertising. Social Media Today. Retrieved from


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UNT Eagle Strategies

Class members of the social media class in the Mayborn School of Journalism