Why We Are "Meh" on Meta
Shortly after launching TheWMarketplace to shoppers in the fall of 2020, we started advertising our business and promoting our sellers on the major social media platforms. It is no marketing secret that this is one of the quickest and easiest ways to get eyes on a new website, and start getting some brand recognition. What we also quickly learned is that Facebook (owned by "Meta") seemed to take issue with our mission messaging and some of the ads we place featuring our sellers. Here are two examples from 2021:
This was a post we did on Inauguration Day, 2021. It was just a message of congratulations to VP Harris. But it was rejected, repeatedly, by Facebook for violating its political speech policies. 🤔
This is an ad we have run a few times featuring our seller, Betts Fit. It repeatedly has been rejected by Facebook for violating it's "Commerce Policy" because it's "sexually suggestive". Again, 🤷♀️
We have thousands of products on our site and every time Facebook decides an image doesn't meet its seemingly random standards, we have to appeal to have the image approved. All of this is profoundly annoying and a giant waste of our very, very limited start-up resources.
But I think we could put up with it, if it weren't coupled with everything we have learned about Facebook and Mark Zuckerberg's policies and practices. If you have an hour, I encourage everyone to listen to Kara Swisher's interview with the Facebook whistleblower, Frances Haugen. It's mind blowing. Here is my summary of what I learned: Mark Zuckerberg does not care if democracy dies, as long as he continues to make ALL THE MONEY.
So, for 2022 and beyond, we are shifting our spend at TheWMarketplace. Sadly, because of the monopoly that Facebook holds on "direct to consumer" advertising, we aren't going to be able to completely ditch Facebook and still support our sellers with exposure to new customers. But we are proactively looking for alternatives to reach shoppers who will resonate with our mission to support women entrepreneurs.
We've already found one great option, The Donut, a newsletter that delivers, well, the news! It's a fun, daily read that hits all the major topics in short takes and a few deep dives. (And their emoji game is 💪) The Donut has worked with us like a true partner and I trust them with our brand and our messaging - and we have had some great early results!
We will be spending the next couple of weeks looking for additional options for 2022 advertising. So if you have a newsletter with good reach, or a website with an aligned mission, please feel free to hit me up. We are shifting our spend and I can't wait to someday completely cut the ties with "Meh-ta".