When General Motors announced that it would discontinue its annual $10 million-worth of Facebook advertising, cross-town frenemy Ford felt compelled to put in its two cents by tweeting:
“It’s all about the execution. Our Facebook ads are effective when strategically combined with engaging content & innovation.”
Apparently, The Blue Oval has found that reaching users through Facebook paid ads has helped the automaker improve its social media marketing — such as reaching million of people using Facebook in launching the all-new Ford Explorer last year.
Rolling with the punches, GM switched social networks (oh no they didn’t!) and posted a retort on its Facebook wall:
“Just wanted to let our millions of Facebook fans know, we’re still here, and we ‘like’ you back! We may not be advertising on Facebook at the moment but we’ll still be talking with you all daily. If anything, we will be providing more content across our many GM Facebook pages – including Chevrolet, Buick, GMC and Cadillac – to keep the dialogue going.”
The GM Authority Take
The General’s decision to drop Facebook ads, which took place the week of the social network’s IPO “parade” — much like the one GM held before its own IPO, came after learning that more than half of Facebook users never click on sponsored ads, and of those who do, only 12 percent would make a purchase through Facebook.
GM’s move has widely been scrutinized in the media as the first visible crack in Facebook’s business strategy, but it’s important to note that GM has spent millions of dollars with Facebook over the last several years already. In addition, marketing strategies change over time, which is likely why GM’s message to its fans stated that it may not be advertising on Facebook “at the moment”; in other words, change is in the air — and no drama is necessary.