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Facebook Ad Glitches Could Spark 2021 Exodus

Marketers Bemoan Rising Costs & Glitches Galore 

Sadly, the Great Facebook ad boycott of 2020, achieved little.

Both, in terms of driving meaningful changes from Facebook related to hate speech and secondly scaring advertisers off platform, beyond the original July window.

However, according to reports from Digiday, growing frustration from marketers related to buggy interfaces, system glitches and approval pains could finally tip the balance in 2021.

With brands and marketers no longer fully trusting the platform enough to dominate the lion's share of digital marketing investments.

Jeromy Sonne, MD of Moonshine Marketing, via DigiDay.

"While it's still the biggest and everyone will still use it, brands no longer trust it enough to go all in on Facebook."

Alongside day-to-day management frustrations, several years of successive and excessive price rises are expected to drain interest.

Digiday claims that Marketers are increasingly questioning the value of Facebook campaigns since its CPMs are roughly 3x as expensive as other platforms such as TikTok and Snapchat:

  • Facebook costs $14-$17
  • TikTok and Snapchat costs $3-$5

While heading into 2021, the new changes related to Apple's iOS14 will skewer Facebook ad performance.

Facebook AI Is Letting Businesses Down

Brands and marketers are getting turned-off by Facebook's higher cost, but that's not the only reason Facebook has gone down in marketers' estimations.

Facebook Ads Manager has become a difficult beast to tame. Updates have made the platform more difficult to run ads on than ever before. Accounts are getting banned by mistake, Ads Manager is creaking and trust is eroding.

Duane Brown, Founder and Head of Strategy, Take Some Risk, via DigiDay

"This summer, with Facebook Ads Manager being broken [it was clear] some changes Facebook made, made the platform harder to run ads on."

Marketers are now looking towards Instagram, Pinterest, Snapchat and TikTok, albeit for more niche and targeted campaigns. Rather than broad reach.

Additionally, recent eCommerce integrations with TikTok, Snapchat and Pinterest have made those platforms more attractive for retailers. At the same time, they've also streamlined their ad creation processes to make it easier than ever before.

Facebook Lockouts in Lockdown

The picture from the coalface, especially for smaller players, has been grim at times.

With marketers at times being locked out of their accounts, in error, for no clear reason and with no apparent recourse. While in some cases advertisers have not been able to get back into their accounts, with ads left still running.

The ramifications for businesses and agencies reliant on Facebook Ads are not hard to imagine.

Chris Raines, Bullhorn Media, via Bloomberg

"The actual injury, especially for advertisers and marketers, is immense. Had I not had that workaround, my business would have went away."

The problem seems to stem from Facebook's beefed-up automated tools introduced following COVID-19. It was meant to stop inappropriate content from getting out onto the platform but has punished legitimate advertisers heavily.

To make matters worse, Facebook's automated help system isn't much help, either.

With Apple dealing Facebook a major blow in 2021 with iOS14, exhausting advertiser goodwill is an unnecessary mistake from Big Blue which will likely come back to haunt it.

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