facebookJust in case you’re not familiar with the topic, Facebook goes public. The IPO happens today, May 18. What does this even mean to the average user of Facebook, and more importantly, to affiliates?

First of all, some basic facts. Facebook will raise upwards of $15 billion (yes, billion, not a typo) in cash (approaching the $16 billion mark). There will be a total of 421 million shares in the IPO, and if you want to own a tiny bit of Facebook, you can do so (at $28 to $35 per share).

This whole IPO indicates one clear, direct opportunity for affiliates, and all investors for that matter. You can simply acquire some Facebook shares as an investment. Even though we’re not any stock market experts, we think that Facebook shares going down anytime soon is not very likely. Right now the company is growing at over 75% per year, and has a nearly 50% profit margin (see the infographic).

But let’s talk some other impact the IPO can have on affiliate marketers.

Facebook Advertising

Public companies have to generate profit, or they can go down very very quickly. Facebook will probably have to introduce new ways of monetizing their site if they want to stay on top.

And since Facebook already has a pretty decent advertising platform they will probably expand its reach or introduce new forms of ads. This is something affiliates should take advantage of immediately.

We all remember the situation with AdWords in 2001. The early adopters are always reaping the most benefits.

Mobile

Facebook dominates the social network space. But when it comes to mobile, there are a lot of different apps with laser-targeted focus and functionality. Facebook finds it hard to compete against them (one of the reasons why they’ve acquired Instagram).

This means that Facebook will continue to buy or build apps for better mobile integration. And when they do, their advertising program is likely to make an appearance there as well.

Facebook Search

As reported by Mashable: “[Facebook is working on] integrating a full-fledged search engine into Facebook could have a dramatic impact on how users experience the site and how advertisers target users.”

Visibility

With more and more brands on Facebook it gets significantly harder to reach out to your prospective customers and get noticed. Users’ News Feeds are getting more crowded every day, and if you – as an affiliate – want to get noticed, you’ll have to step your game up and provide even more quality content and promotions.

No matter what the future holds, we can certainly say that history will be made today.