Facebook spends on ads to celebrate the role of its communities in lockdown


Facebook is bringing its ‘More Together’ positioning to the UK to underscore how its online support networks are enabling people to help each other through the global Covid-19 pandemic.

The rollout follows on from a 2019 debut campaign from its first chief marketing officer Antonio Lucio in the US, promoting the role of its groups in creating online communities.

The push also comes as Facebook reveals that 2 million people have joined more than 2,000 local Covid-19 community support groups since the start of the outbreak.

Facebook says the work will “reflect the most relevant consumer mindsets and experiences” from Facebook groups as coronavirus prevention measures rumble on globally. So far, the creative includes real video and static content from parenting support networks, home workout groups and a community of dog lovers — highlighting the adaptability of these groups in the face of the pandemic.

The campaign was developed in-house and will run on Facebook and Instagram until June.

The Mark Zuckerberg-owned tech giant has faced its own coronavirus challenges over the past month. In the early stages of the pandemic, it was forced to take quick steps to tackle the spread of misinformation from bad actors and misleading advertisers.

The business has pledged to support its small business clients throughout the coronavirus pandemic by offering up $100m in cash grants and ad credits. While representing a fraction of Facebook’s multi-billion-dollar turnover, the move marked a significant step into the waters of non-profit-generating purpose for the blue giant.

However, despite record usage figures propelled by housebound members, little has been done to ease Facebook’s concerns about its own coronavirus crunch.

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When the outbreak began to bite corporates last month Facebook observed a “weakening” of its lucrative advertising business as brands and firms battered down the hatches along with everyone else, constraining a vital revenue stream for the business.

In a blog post detailing these profound and unanticipated shifts in March, Facebook wrote: “We have received questions about revenue, so want to provide some context here too: Much of the increased traffic is happening on our messaging services, but we’ve also seen more people using our feed and stories products to get updates from their family and friends.

“At the same time, our business is being adversely affected like so many others around the world. We don’t monetize many of the services where we’re seeing increased engagement, and we’ve seen a weakening in our ads business in countries taking aggressive actions to reduce the spread of Covid-19.”

The material impact to the business will be clearer on Wednesday (29 April) when Facebook announces its quarterly financial results.



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