Facebook Surges After Big Q4 Earnings Beat (NASDAQ:FB)

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In response to a question during the earnings call regarding Stories ad adoption, Facebook chief operating officer Sheryl Sandberg reported two million advertisers were now using Stories ads - but did not clarify if those were Facebook Stories or Instagram Stories ad units.

"We've put most of our energy into security over the past 18 months, so that building new experiences wasn't the priority over that period", Mark Zuckerberg, the 34-year old billionaire and chief executive officer of Facebook, told analysts on a post-earnings call. Facebook said more than 2.7 billion users interact with at least one of its apps each month, up from 2.6 billion last quarter.

Monthly active users were up 9 percent year-over-year to 2.32 billion, slightly above expectations.

"Its going to be an enormous challenge professionally but I'm ready for it", the new Privacy Policy Manager for WhatsApp added. The CEO said the area he's most excited about is Instagram shopping and commerce opportunities.

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"The bottom line is that with more than a quarter of the world using FB every day, we think advertisers have no choice but to follow their customers", Macquarie Research analysts said.

Facebook on Wednesday easily beat Wall Street's profit estimates, soothing investor concerns that increased spending on the privacy of its users would blunt growth. Net income rose to $6.88 billion (roughly Rs. 48,000 crores), or $2.38 (roughly Rs. 170) per share, in the fourth quarter, up from $4.27 billion, or $1.44 per share, a year earlier.

Why you should care. It's clear that overall, the Facebook family of apps has the breadth of formats and the reach marketers are looking for when it comes to engaging with their audiences and placing ads'. "We're going to get to a point soon where people feel like Facebook is about communities as much as it's about your friends and family - where nearly everyone is in a group that is meaningful to them and that community is a central part of their experience". With more than ten years of marketing management experience, she has contributed to a variety of traditional and online publications, including MarketingProfs.com, SoftwareCEO.com, and Sales and Marketing Management Magazine.

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