Here at The Ad Contrarian Global Worldwide Nerve Center Headquarters we pride ourselves on fairness and accuracy. I mean, considering it's a blog.
So today, we are going to the defense of social media. You heard that right -- we're defending social media.
What is the reason for this temporary loss of sanity? Facebook.
You see, the Facebook IPO disaster may turn out to be a tipping point for social media -- a bad tipping point. And it may not be fair.
For almost 5 years, consumer interest in social media has grown at a phenomenal rate. Facebook and Twitter have become international sensations. Social media marketing, on the other hand, has had a less than brilliant history.
Nonetheless, the marketing industry blindly embraced the magic of social media marketing. The Facebook debacle is changing that. Marketers are now saying out loud what they only whispered a year ago -- how much of the miracle of social media is real and how much is bullshit?
The irony in all this is that Facebook may be a social media venue, but as a business it is nothing more than another medium for selling display ads. To be more succinct, Facebook does not sell social media, it sells display ads. And as we know, the record of online display advertising is below dismal.
Investors think of Facebook as a social media play. It is nothing of the sort. Facebook makes about 85% of its income selling crappy little ads that no one notices. The press has portrayed the Facebook face plant as an indication that the business community has lost confidence in social media. While this may be true, it is not really relevant to Facebook's business problem.
I have been more than critical of the hype surrounding social media marketing. But let's be fair. Let's judge social media marketing on its ability to create results. Not on Facebook's ability to sell display ads.
When I put this post to bed last night, "The Ad Contrarian" was #2 and "101 Contrarian Ideas About Advertising" was #4 on Amazon's advertising ebook best-seller list. Thanks! We're taking over the publishing world 99¢ at a time.