Uncle Ben (Peter Parker / Spider-Man’s uncle) already said it: « Great power carries great responsibility » And today Facebook is facing the consequences of the great power it has, specifically in matters of communication.
We are facing something surprising and never seen before; The first massive advertising boycott against a medium, where hundreds of brands are uniting to avoid advertising within the Facebook ecosystem, so Instagram, Messenger and Audience Network are included.
The origin of the boycott
Following Facebook’s decision not to take action on President Donald Trump’s incendiary posts, the #StopHateForProfit campaign calls for advertisers on the platform not to invest in advertising during July, arguing that the Zuckerberg company has tolerated racism and hate speech.
It should be noted that at the time Twitter confronted Trump by hiding some of his radical messages, considering them aggressive and racist.
Can you boycott Facebook?
As the weeks go by, more companies have joined this initiative, and what many doubted happened in recent days when Coca-Cola announced that it was joining the list of more than 100 companies that thought to stop their budgets in July. The answer is « Yes, » if you can boycott a company the size of Facebook, when companies organize and group together for a common purpose.
Among the most important brands that have risen to this boycott are:
Adidas, Coca-Cola, Diageo, Ford, Hershey, Honda, Levi’s, Microsoft, North Face, Pepsi, Reebok, Starbucks, Unilever and Verizon
Under pressure, not just from advertisers, but from investors, Facebook acknowledged last Sunday that it still has a lot of work to do and announced that it is partnering with civil rights groups and experts to develop more and better tools to combat the speech. of hate.
Facebook said its AI platform today has allowed it to find 90% of hate speech before users report it.
The impact of the boycott for Facebook
Facebook generates $ 70 billion a year in advertising sales, hence, about a quarter comes from large companies such as Ford, Unilever or Adidas.
To give us an idea of the impact, Starbucks spent $ 95 million on Facebook last year, and Diageo spent $ 23 million, just last year alone.
Facebook shares fell nearly 3% in early trading on Monday, June 29, after brands like Starbucks, Hershey’s and Coca-Cola announced they would suspend spending on the platform. This comes after the 8% drop last Friday, on the news that Unilever was joining #StopHateForProfit and would not be announced on the platform for this of the year.
The impact for the industry
Beyond seeing Facebook suffer or not for the millions it will not receive in advertising, for brands and agencies it will be a golden opportunity for different topics, for example:
Try new digital advertising options
Evaluate the performance of the other channels
Review the dependency on a single medium
Evaluate ROI, CTR and conversion without Facebook channel
Re-evaluate the role of other social networks to meet the objectives
Discover the advantages of the specific formats of other social networks
An advantage for small advertisers will be that the CPC in theory will drop a bit, thanks to the decrease in ads wanting to reach the same segment.
Knowledge that is not shared completely loses its value
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