October 12, 2011, 1:31 PM

Facebook ad spending rose 25% in Q3

Efficient Frontier says cost per click costs were up 54%.

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Facebook ad spending jumped 25% in the third quarter compared to the second quarter as marketers increasingly turned to the social network to increase engagement with consumers, according to a new report from search marketing firm Efficient Frontier.

The vendor also found that the cost per click on Facebook jumped 54% compared to the second quarter, which shows that competition is increasing on the platform, says David Karnstedt, Efficient Frontier president and CEO. “This quarter we continued to see Facebook make gains as a ‘must have’ for marketers as they try to maximize their fan base reach,” he says.

The report projects that cost per clicks will rise on Facebook 30% to 40% in the fourth quarter, as advertisers continue increasing their investments to acquire, engage and monetize Facebook users.

To bolster their fan bases on the social network retailers and other marketers are using a combination of Facebook Ads and Sponsored Stories, an ad format on the social network that enables companies to pay to highlight posts or actions that a consumer’s Facebook friend has made that relate to the advertiser, according to the report. Those efforts worked as brands active on Efficient Frontier’s Context Optional platform increased their fan count 9% per month on average and doubling their fan bases year over year.

Increasing their fan bases helped increase consumers’ engagement, such as clicking Like, posting a comment or sharing information, on the platform by 31% compared to the second quarter. Likes on the platform jumped 84%, comments rose 15% and shares increased 1% for the vendor’s customers. 

The report also found that Google Inc. regained market share from Yahoo Inc. and Bing for the first time since the fourth quarter of 2010. Google accounted for 81.9% of search spend and 82.5% in the third quarter, compared to 80.5% and 80.2%, respectively a year earlier.

The report is based on data from Efficient Frontier’s customers.

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