Facebook ineffective as far as paid advertising…

I remember when Facebook first started. I was in college (it was only for college students), and suddenly ads started to appear. Most of the ones I saw were for parties, or bar crawls, or networking events. Pretty effective and I definitely remember being one individual who clicked.

Fast forward many years later, and facebook ads are ineffective.¬†At least that’s what GM thinks.

A few days before the Facebook IPO, GM decided to discontinue paid advertising on facebook. However, they will still be using the free services on the site for user engagement.

Apparently, GM wasn’t seeing the type of ROI they wanted to see for $10 million in advertising on the social network.

I’m not terribly surprised either. Depending on the campaign, facebook advertising isn’t very effective for me. However, the fact that the car company is still leaving their unpaid efforts intact on the site could send a message to other advertisers on facebook. “Don’t pay for anything here, but continue to use the service as part of a larger strategy.”

The message is fine. However, I wonder if more and more advertisers will see the lack of ROI. Won’t this make monetizing facebook a bit harder in the future? Some of it’s initial IPO pricing is based off of the monetizing factor, right?

Either way, GM’s exit of paid advertising on facebook just leaves more room for another advertiser.

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Why wasn’t there a “Buy American” campaign?

Or was there one and I’m just not aware of it?

Print ad sales down for magazines in the first quarter of 2009.

Publisher’s Information Bureau turned no frowns upside down with the results of it’s research of magazine ad sales this year. (click here for link to survey)

Basically all revenue is down, meaning companies are spending less on magazine ads.

That about makes sense. The recession is bad news. If you can advertise for cheaper in a medium other than print, it makes sense to spend less on magazine ads.

However. According to the results, the automotive category spent less on ads than any other category. That doesn’t make quite as much sense to me. I would think that this category would have been the one with an increase in spending. Granted, the survey does not break down the percentage decrease of ads from foreign or US car makers, but even still. A decrease of 43.6% of advertising dollars from one year makes me think that American auto companies didn’t pump enough money into advertising at a time that people really needed to be encouraged to buy American cars.

In fact, just thinking about, I can’t think of any campaign that has ever conveyed a national message of “Buy American”. In a time when American auto companies needed consumers the most, I should have been slathered with ads telling me why buying a Ford, GM, or Chrysler car was so much more beneficial trying to get that Honda Civic I covet so. That didn’t happen.

Not saying that such a campaign would have prevented Chrysler and GM from going bankrupt.

However, the constant coverage of how poorly the American auto companies were doing (and little support from ads on how buying one would be beneficial) probably didn’t either.