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Facebook Climbs to 2.5 Billion Monthly Active Users, But Rising Costs Impede Income Growth

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Facebook has published its Q4 2019 performance update, showing increases in both users and revenue, though costs associated with newer initiatives are also impeding overall growth. 

First off, on users – Facebook added 34 million daily active users, taking it to 1.66 billion DAU for the period.

Facebook Q4 2019 - Daily Active Users

Facebook added a million more users in the North American market, where it generates the majority of its revenue, while it saw the most significant growth, once again, in the Asia-Pacific market, adding 14 million more daily actives.

Overall, Facebook’s daily user growth momentum remains steady, and in line with ongoing growth patterns, though it will need to increase revenue per user in regions outside the US to boost its earnings.

Facebook Q4 2019 - ARPU

In terms of monthly actives, Facebook climbed to a new milestone of 2.5 billion MAU.

Facebook Q4 2019 - Monthly Active Users

This was also lead by the Asia Pacific region, where Facebook continues to reach new markets. It’ll take some time for Facebook to convert those newer users into more lucrative targets for advertisers, boosting its revenue potential, but with initiatives like Facebook Pay in India and Indonesia, combined with on-platform shopping, it’s already taking steps towards building the next major business eco-system. 

This time around, Facebook has also provided insights into overall usage across its ‘family of apps’ – or combined usage data across Facebook, Instagram, Messenger and WhatsApp.

Facebook Q4 2019 - Family of Apps

As explained by Facebook:

“Our Family metrics represent our estimates of the underlying number of unique people using one or more of Facebook, Instagram, Messenger, and/or WhatsApp (collectively, our “Family” of products). We define a DAP as a registered and logged-in user of one or more Family products who visited at least one of these products through a mobile device application or using a web or mobile browser on a given day.”

As you can see here, across its app ‘family”, Facebook now serves 2.26 billion people every day, a huge breadth of reach which far outpaces any other social network. 

Reporting its app usage stats in combination seems like cheating, in some ways, using the company’s massive scale beyond its main platform, acquired through acquisition, to potentially mask growth slowdowns on any of its given tools. But then again, given the way Facebook’s ad platform works, that figure is relevant with respect to how many people you can reach through Facebook’s tools.

Facebook has also provided a monthly family of apps usage chart.

Facebook Q4 2019 - Family of Apps MAU

In terms of revenue, Facebook posted a massive $21 billion result for Q4, up 25% year-over-year.

Facebook Q4 2019 - Revenue

However, there are some concerning signs also. In among its financial data listings, you can see that the company’s costs and expenses have increased 51% year over year.

Facebook Q4 2019 - costs and expenses

Facebook’s efforts to clean-up its platform och improve content moderation have played a significant part in this – according to its disclosure listings, staff headcount has increased 26% year-over-year, and that’s likely to increase further in 2020 as it looks to better address key concerns in line with expansion. For example, that figure doesn’t count the rise in contractors that Facebook also uses for moderation, or the journalists it’s hiring as part of its renewed push into news content, or jobs to be created as it ramps up its efforts to focus on user privacy. Each of these elements will take more staff, which means more cost, and the mounting expenditure has slowed down Facebook’s overall income growth for Q4.

As a result, shares in Facebook were sold down in after-hours trading

Overall, the numbers are still good for Facebook, it’s still performing at an extremely high rate. But it’s ever-growing list of projects does come at a cost, and at least in this quarter, that cost impacted its overall performance more than it would like. 

But really, it’s this chart that’ll be a key focus. 

Facebook Q4 2019 - average revenue by region

Facebook is still heavily reliant on the North American region. 

In order to keep pushing forward on its focus projects, it needs to maximize revenue generation in other markets to capitalize on its massive reach. 

Socialmediatoday.com

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Social Responsibility And Ethics In Influencer Marketing

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Social Responsibility And Ethics In Influencer Marketing

Chief Growth Officer (CGO) at HypeFactory, a global influencer marketing agency.

It’s no secret that influencer marketing popularity has skyrocketed over the past couple of years, and partnering with influencers isn’t a new concept. Just over the past year, the industry was valued at $16.4 billion and still keeps growing, with a whopping revenue forecast of $143.10 billion in 2030.

Since the beginning of influencer marketing, people have talked about how influencers and social responsibility fit together. It stands to reason that influential people would use their large fan bases to help others. However, when influencers and businesses collaborate, they each have specific responsibilities to the communities in which they operate.

Sponsorship Transparency And Gender Stereotypes

One of the most critical skills for an influencer is honesty. Influencers base their marketing strategy on being genuine and sharing personal tales and thoughts with their target audience. They are not celebrities living in a bubble of fame that very few of their followers will ever reach; instead, they live lifestyles that are reachable and use items that their viewers would find helpful. This approach has significantly contributed to their immense level of success.

However, many influencers don’t play by the rules, especially when it comes to impressing brands they’ve made deals with, even though transparency is essential to the sustainability of an influencer’s career. Because of this, many people would think that the most important ethical issue in influencer marketing is sponsorship disclosure.

The United States Federal Trade Commission (FTC) and the Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) and the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) in the United Kingdom have all put out rules about how influencers should be honest in their posts and about their relationships with brands. If you disobey the regulations, you risk facing penalties, fines and legal bills. You also risk losing the trust of your customers for good.

Moreover, when doing influencer marketing, it’s essential to consider gender stereotypes and how people usually think men and women will act in different situations. The Committee on Advertising Practice (CAP) has said that since June 2019, marketing materials could no longer show men and women in ways that are based on stereotypes. These rules state that ads “must not use gender stereotypes that are likely to hurt or offend a large number of people.” Great campaigns, like Nike’s “Dream Crazier,” have challenged gender preconceptions.

Improving Influencer Marketing’s Reliability And Authenticity

Authenticity is essential in influencer marketing. People listen to influencers who are honest and relatable. In addition to the moral problems I mentioned above, brands and influencers must also follow FTC rules, community guidelines and terms of service on social media platforms.

Based on my experience as a chief growth officer at a global influencer marketing agency, here are some things brands must consider for influencer partnerships that are authentic and reliable.

Outline—and stick to—the ethical principles that your brand stands for.

Before you can begin your search for the ideal influencers, you must first understand the core principles of representing your business. Most businesses start by determining their values and ethics early on. They then use these to build their brand identity. It’s up to each company’s brand to decide where they will draw the line and how they will show their core values on social media.

However, consumers place a high value on consistent honesty. Customers are likely to call out your company for being hypocritical if it says it wants to fight racism but then partners with an influencer who has a history of making small slights against people of color. Or if your company promotes equal pay yet pays female influencers less than it does male influencers, contributing to the continuation of the pay gap between male and female influencers.

As a result, you will likely lose the trust of these customers.

Collaborate with real influencers.

One of the most effective ways to stick to influencer marketing principles is by collaborating with real-life influencers. Choosing the right influencers is crucial for building consumer confidence in your product.

Determine which influencers are authentic and have credibility with your intended audience. Specifically, it would be best to look at how many people engage with their content and how good it is. Even though engagement numbers are essential, they only tell part of the story about an influencer’s reliability. Please pay close attention to their writing style, the brands they’ve worked with, the accuracy of their reviews, etc.

Develop a long-term partnership.

When you’ve found a group of genuine, influential people with whom you can collaborate successfully, it’s crucial to keep in touch with them over time. Even if they are paid to review a product, genuine influencers always give honest opinions. Because they follow all the rules, the spectator can have more faith in them.

Consequently, after a shortlist of influencers has been compiled, you should perform authenticity checks. Check their content feed for branded articles. Make sure that any disclaimers you find adhere to the first point’s disclosure guidelines. Consistently partnering with the same influencers demonstrates to customers that you value their brand’s success just as much as they do, which can increase consumer confidence in your business.

Slutsats

Authenticity serves as the cornerstone of the influencer marketing strategy. Influencers earn the trust of their followers and become successful when they always provide high-quality, authentic, relatable content.

In addition to the concerns over the morality of influencer marketing, brands and influencers must follow the criteria established by the FTC and the community guidelines and terms of service based on social media platforms. You can shield your brand from potential ethical and legal difficulties and still enjoy success with influencer marketing if you are aware of the expectations and follow certain best practices.


Forbes Agency Council is an invitation-only community for executives in successful public relations, media strategy, creative and advertising agencies. Do I qualify?


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Key Notes on Building Your Brand via Your Social Profile Visuals [Infographic]

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Key Notes on Building Your Brand via Your Social Profile Visuals [Infographic]

Looking to give your social profiles a visual refresh for the new year?

This could help – the team from Giraffe Social Media recently put together an overview of the whys and hows of building your brand via your social profile visuals.

There are some good notes here – a key consideration is consistency, which ensures that you’re building your brand with every post and update.

Check out the full infographic below.

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Publicis Performance Marketing Unit Acquires Influencer Platform Perlu 01/30/2023

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Publicis Performance Marketing Unit Acquires Influencer Platform Perlu 01/30/2023

Publicis Groupe-owned performance marketing agency CJ, which specializes in affiliate marketing, has acquired Perlu, a Syracuse, New York-based influencer networking and technology platform.
Perlu’s platform enables companies to activate, network, and collaborate with a community of influencers.   

Perlu will initially retain its name and organization as it is
integrated …



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