Facebook, Twitter Dump Display Ads for Sponsored Postsby John Carroll onMar 1, 2012 • 5:37 am 1 Comment
The Problem: Virtually no one on (especially) Facebook and (also) Twitter wants to engage in commercial activity while engaging with their social media circles.
The Solution: Make the ads not ads, but social media content.
As Facebook and Twitter roll out the latest advances to their business models, they’re clearly turning away from the Internet staple of display advertising.
Facebook is pushing marketers to create Facebook native-content — a post on their brand page — and pay to promote that post to a wider audience. Today, for the first time, Facebook will begin placing those sponsored stories in the user’s main News Feed.
But wait – there’s more!
“This [the News Feed] is the place where marketing on Facebook is going to feel like the rest of Facebook,” Mike Hoefflinger, director of global business marketing, said on stage at the Facebook Marketing Conference today in New York.
“We are evolving from ads to stories,” Hoefflinger said. “Ads are good, but stories it turns out are better.”
Likewise, Twitter’s marketing strategy involves marketers paying to place Twitter-native content — a tweet, a hashtag — in front of a larger audience.
The Result: Mixing social media content with marketing content makes them indistinguishable from one another.
In other words, the apex of stealth marketing.
Welcome to the Brave Noose World of advertising.
John Carroll, who also writes at Campaign Outsider and It's Good to Live in a Two-Daily Town, is a media analyst and mass communication professor at Boston University.
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