Thursday, May 17, 2012

The Emperor has no clothes on!


When it comes to new media success stories, YouTube can point to Dove’s Evolution spot, which increased visits to its website by 8000% (Fawcett, 2007) and Twitter can point to Sephora’s Sephora Claus campaign which generated $1 million in sales. (Economist Intelligence Unit Limited, 2011)  But what about Facebook?

Last week a Financial Times report touted the results of a December Facebook campaign for Nutella in Germany.  According to the company, the Facebook placement reached 30% of the country’s online users, and was responsible for 15% of sales.  But then the report goes on to say that TV, which was also part of the campaign, accounted for more revenue.  Hmm.  Talk about faint praise. (Goetzl, 2012)

Therefore, I was less than surprised when this Wednesday’s Wall Street Journal featured a front page story about GM’s decision to pull all its advertising ($10 million) from Facebook because the ads “had little impact on consumers.”  The company will still maintain its free brand page, but how much longer will that last, when the content costs $30 million to produce? (Walsh, 2012)

And as more traffic continues to move to mobile devices, it’s important to remember that Facebook does not offer any mobile ad-targeting options. (Sullivan, 2012)

Advertisers need results and models of successful efforts to build on if they are going to invest in media properties.  Right now, I’d rather put my money on YouTube, which is beefing up content to attract new viewers than Facebook, which has yet to deliver.  What about you?


Fawcett, A. (2007). Consumer packaged goods marketer of the year: Unilever’s Dove.  mediapost.com Retrived January 3, 2007, from http://publications.mediapost.com/index.cfm?fuseaction=Articles.san&s=53208&Nid=2616

Economist Intelligence Unit Limited. (2011). The Social Shopper.  The Economist.  Retrieved May 16, 2012, from


Goetzl, D. (2012, May 7).  Nutella Says Facebook Ads Brought Sweeter ROI Than TV.  mediapost.com. Retrieved May 16, 2012, from

Walsh, M. (2012, May 15).  GM Slams Brakes On Facebook Advertising.  mediapost.com.  Retrieved May 16, 2012, from

Sullivan, L. (2012, May 15).  Facebook Needs Open Ad-Targeting Formats To Succeed.  mediapost.com.  Retrieved May 16, 2012, from

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