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Facebook launches creative agency review, taps Johannes Leonardo for Instagram

Ogilvy has been the brand’s lead external creative agency since 2019. The shop is no longer working on Instagram, the company said, but remains in Facebook’s overall creative mix. Ogilvy declined to comment.

The changes come at a pivotal moment for Facebook’s evolving marketing strategy following Chief Marketing Officer Antonio Lucio’s departure last summer. Just this week, Facebook said it would conduct the first review of its $750 million media business in about seven years. Facebook has worked with WPP’s Mindshare and Dentsu on buying media since 2014. The agencies handle Facebook’s spending for its marketing budget on digital, TV, connected TV, print and out-of-home billboards.

Facebook tapped ID Comms, a large media consulting group, to help it search for new media-buying partners.

Facebook is trying to recast its image among the general public. With 3.3 billion users across its family of apps—including Facebook, Instagram, WhatsApp and Messenger—the platform has been blamed for the ease of sharing disinformation and organizing hate speech online. Governments across the world and regulators are targeting Facebook and its subsidiaries over data, privacy and antitrust concerns.

Meanwhile, TikTok, a Chinese-owned app, is taking off with younger users and has emerged relatively unscathed from its own turmoil, namely a push to get it banned in the U.S. last year. Brands and marketers are starting to spread their money to competing apps like Pinterest and Snapchat, too.

Facebook sees the need for a new tact, and last year it picked Alex Schultz as its new chief marketing officer. Last week, David Fischer announced he would step down as chief revenue officer after 11 years.

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The media review is likely to set off a stampede of agencies looking to win Facebook’s business. There are billions of dollars at stake that most agencies would be glad to help spend.


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