FACEBOOK & GOOGLE AD BANS – ARE YOU NEXT?

Tips from Doug…

Google & Facebook Ad bans

  • 3 Ways to deal with Facebook / Google ad bans
  • Own the relationship
  • Back up your social data
  • Have a plan, and have relationships with Tier II and Tier III networks.

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3 WAYS TO DEAL WITH FACEBOOK & GOOGLE AD BANS
Facebook and Google ban ads for Bitcoin, Cryptocurrency, Cannabis, and Medical Marijuana
Are your ads and or industry next?
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Doug Morneau: Well, welcome back listeners, to another episode of Real Marketing Real Fast. Today, we're going to cover a topic that is all over the news. You don't have to look very far. The only thing you need to do is open your email, do a search on Google, or just check your Facebook feed and look at the streams of your friends and associates that are moaning and complaining.

What I'm referring to is the recent set of bans by Facebook, and by Google banning ads for cryptocurrencies, including Bitcoins and ICOs. Google banning all cryptocurrency ads. If that wasn't enough, just weeks or months ago, there was the whole discussion online about Facebook overhauling their newsfeed in favor of meaningful social interactions.

Today, let's cover off all these topics, and let's look and see where this leaves us, and what this might mean for our businesses moving forward. Looking through the headlines, if you do a quick search on Google, I looked at “Facebook bans crypto,” and I got about 400,000 search engine results in terms of Facebook banning cannabis ads, there's about a one million five hundred thousand plus. With regards to Google banning crypto and cryptocurrency ads, there are seven million registered search engine results.

Obviously, a big topic, and it obviously, at this point, doesn't affect everybody. So this is my rant. My rant really is around what's coming to the marketplace, how can we be paying attention, and how can we protect ourselves and our businesses, and still have the opportunity to grow our businesses, continue to generate leads, and generate sales. It's not just confined necessarily to the ad networks as well. I was recently running a marketing campaign for a client of mine. They had their own database, they asked me to set it up and to run it, and to run some messaging to it.

We set them up with a new account at Drip, and after we had been using the account for a while, I got a notice from Drip saying, “Hey, you guys are not compliant, so we're going to be closing your account.” When I went back to them, I said, “What's the issue?” And they say, “Well, we saw that you used the word cryptocurrency in your email message,” and they went on to say that it was against their terms of service. So, when I looked into the terms of service, I actually found that that was wrong.

I responded back to their customer service. I said, “Hey, it does not say anything about cryptocurrency, blockchain, ICOs, or anything in your terms of service.” They responded back with a new reason, and the new reason was, they said, “Well, it causes lower open rates and lower engagement rates.” So, I maybe should have thought a little bit longer about my response. I just basically said, “BS. My client had a 48% open rate. I simply can't agree. Do you want to share what your average open rate is for newsletters?”

The response I got back was, “Please download your database. We're closing your account at the end of the week.” It goes on. I mean, in Canada, where I'm from, there's an announcement that the Health Canada is considering sweeping bans on ads for junk foods aimed at children and teens. We may not all get out of this alive, in terms of running our advertising. So, what is the message here regarding Facebook and Google ad bans?

I guess the message is clear that times are changing, and they're changing without warning so we need to be prepared. I'm sure that there's some of you that are sitting back thinking, “Well hey, this doesn't bother me. This doesn't affect me. I'm not in the Bitcoin or cryptocurrency or block chain space. I'm not doing initial coin offerings. I'm not doing anything in cannabis or medical marijuana industry. So, I'm safe.”

I'd say I don't think that's true. I mean, our world today just seems to be overly politically correct, and overly sensitive to anything that may offend one individual, even though it's obviously not our intent to offend people. So, I want to share a powerful quote, and I just want to introduce the quote and say that this is not a quote to be taken lightly. But I think it really makes the point of what's happening, what's coming, and what to expect.

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SHARE THIS EPISODE: – FACEBOOK & GOOGLE AD BANS – ARE YOU NEXT?

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3 WAYS TO DEAL WITH FACEBOOK & GOOGLE AD BANS
Facebook and Google ban ads for Bitcoin, Cryptocurrency, Cannabis, and Medical Marijuana
Are your ads and or industry next?
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This was a quote that was written by a gentleman by the name of Martin [Neimueller 00:04:32]. He was a prominent Protestant pastor, and he … I'll just leave it at that, and I'll read you the quote, then you'll figure it out. It goes,

First, they came for the socialists, and I did not speak out because I was not a socialist.

Then, then came for the trade unionists, and I did not speak out because I was not a trade unionist.

Then, they came for the Jews, but I did not speak out because I was not a Jew.

Then, they came for me, and there was no one left to speak for me.

So, this quote is obviously referring to the Nazi rule of Adolf Hitler in the concentration camps. So, it may be a bit of a stretch in this space, but I think the point is, “Then they came for me.” What does that mean for you and I, and our marketing and what we're doing online? What I'd like to suggest here is that there's three things that we really need to do, and do them immediately. One is we need to own the relationship.

So, regardless of what platform you're using, or how you're communicating with your customers or potential customers, you need to own that relationship. You don't have to look very far online to see that there's legitimate companies that are in the medical marijuana and cannabis space, for example, that are having their accounts shut down. So, they go to log into Instagram, and the account is gone.

How do you own that relationship? Well, I would suggest that point number two is backup your data. Backup your social data: Who are your followers on your social media platforms? If your platform got shut down tomorrow, would you be able to get back up and running again? I would hazard a guess that almost everyone listening to this podcast today would have to answer truthfully, “No. If my Instagram account, or Twitter account, or fill in the blank, Facebook account went away tomorrow, I would have no idea how to reconnect with my former audience.”

When you think about it, your audience is an asset that you invested time and money to acquire, and you're really allowing somebody else, a third party, that doesn't have … they're not focused on your business. There's no effect on their bottom line if you stay in business, or if you make money. So, they are bowing to social pressures and policies, which is fine. It's their platform, and they're allowing us to use them, but allowing us to use them at no cost or very little cost, obviously, there's a potential consequence if we don't own that relationship, and we haven't backed up our data.

I would go on further to suggest that in the example that I gave with my client with the cryptocurrency, and the email list, make sure that your email list is backed up. Just because you've got a relationship with an email service provider, someplace that's allowing you to host your list and send to your list, doesn't mean that that will always be the case. At some point or one day, they may decide that your content, or your company, isn't suitable, or doesn't meet their terms and conditions. And you may get a similar message saying, “Please download your data. We're closing your account.”

The third point is have a plan, and have relationships with Tier II and Tier III networks. Google and Facebook, yes they're 800-pound gorillas, I get that. But, there are more networks out there than Google and Facebook. Just as a very specific example, I've done a lot of work in the Venture Capital space, and what I know is that when I go through my client's databases that I'm managing, that a Yahoo user tends to be a better prospect because they spend more time on site than Google. So, is that a knock against Google? No, I'm just looking at pure analytics.

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SHARE THIS EPISODE: – FACEBOOK & GOOGLE AD BANS – ARE YOU NEXT?

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3 WAYS TO DEAL WITH FACEBOOK & GOOGLE AD BANS
Facebook and Google ban ads for Bitcoin, Cryptocurrency, Cannabis, and Medical Marijuana
Are your ads and or industry next?
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So, there's nothing wrong with looking at Tier II and Tier III ad networks, and looking for other opportunities. So, the old saying, “Dig the well before you need the water,” certainly is true here. I think for many of us, we've been caught off guard with this rash of ad account suspensions, and the total ban on all cryptocurrency ads, and blockchain ads, and ads in the cannabis space. Who knows who's next on the chopping block?

What I do know is that I don't want to be next … and I don't want my clients to be caught off guard and then be looking, saying, “Okay, we had good cash flow. We were running these ads, and then the next day, the cash flow stops because the ads stop as well.” So, what do I think about these bans? Well, I guess the bottom line is, big deal. The world is overly politically correct and sensitive, so this shouldn't be a shocker of what's happening.

I'm not going to share any predictions of what I think's coming, but I think it's going to continue to change. So, with regards to this topic, this will be my only rant on the topic. You're not going to see me spending a bunch of time on social media complaining about Facebook banned my ad account, or Facebook won't let me run cryptocurrency ads, or Google won't let me run cryptocurrency ads. So what? Just, like I said, dig the well before you need the water. Own the relationship.

Make sure that we've got the data backed, or you've got your data backed up, and then plan to have some other relationships in place so when or if this day comes for you, and your industry, or the product sector, or the products that you're selling, and you find out, “Hey, I can't advertise on these Tier I networks anymore, what are my choices?” So, what you'll do is you'll find me these days. I'm actively looking for solutions and alternatives, and best practices to protect the future growth of my company, and for my clients' companies in advertising.

Just a minute here to ponder. If you think about … and I'll just talk about myself. As an entrepreneur, and someone who's been in business for a really long time, I often have the inability to focus. I am quite often drawn to, or more often than not, the shiny object. So, I spend my days looking at all the new stuff. But, the one thing that I don't don is I don't forget about the old media. There's certain media that's tried and true.

For those of you who said, “Hey, social's where it's at,” and, “Email is dead,” I'd suggest that maybe your email list isn't looking so bad anymore. Maybe those thousand or five thousand or 10 thousand people who signed up for your email list … yeah, maybe they don't look so bad know that you cant advertise on Facebook, you can't advertise on Google. Or, maybe you're thinking back from your marketing department, or a consultant that you're working with that was talking about SEO, and you said, “No. SEO is not worth the time and effort. I'm a Google ad guy, or I'm a SnapChat,” whatever you're doing, again, maybe SEO isn't such a bad strategy.

So what I find and have found, and you may agree or disagree is that often we throw … an old saying, this will date me a little bit, or maybe a lot is that we often “Throw the baby out with the bathwater.” So, the shiny new object or tactic comes along, and we all immediately rush over to that, and then we say things like, “Oh, this is dead,” or, “That's dead,” or “That's not working.”

That was certainly the case with social, and that was certainly the case with email and to some extent, SEO as well. But, it just goes to prove that if you had a good solid SEO strategy, and you're getting good organic traffic, if you had built a really good email list and maintained that list, and communicated with your customers, that the ban on all this advertising by Google and Facebook wouldn't have been as detrimental to your business if you're in that space.

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SHARE THIS EPISODE: – FACEBOOK & GOOGLE AD BANS – ARE YOU NEXT?

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3 WAYS TO DEAL WITH FACEBOOK & GOOGLE AD BANS
Facebook and Google ban ads for Bitcoin, Cryptocurrency, Cannabis, and Medical Marijuana
Are your ads and or industry next?
_ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _

You know, I'm super excited right now because I like change, and I like radical change like this, because most often what I find is once people stop bitching, moaning and complaining about how bad it is, and how those capitalists shouldn't do this, and shouldn't shut off our ads, they just don't know what to do. So, they just stick their heads in the sand, and that's where I think that the opportunity for us to thrive … at least that's certainly where I thrive.

I mean, I'm currently working with a few clients in the cannabis and medical marijuana sector right now. I'm excited about these bans for a couple of reasons. First of all, there [inaudible 00:12:50] last or no competition. So, until the majority of our competitors figure out what to do, and stop complaining, we're going to have a lot more opportunity to reach consumers. You may say, “Well, how do you do that?” Well, I've just done exactly what I've said. I've built deep relationships with ad platforms and sites, that are more than happy to introduce our clients in the cannabis space, or the cryptocurrency space, to their audience.

So, these are Tier II and Tier III networks across all platforms, whether it's print, radio or online, or digital space, that have the audience that we want, and they're not imposing these types of restrictions. Lastly, and if you've listened to the podcast, or you've read my website, or any of my blog posts rather, you'll know that I am a huge advocate of a third party email list.

So here we go again, maybe for the last time, or at least the last time on this podcast, here's an opportunity to take your message and have somebody else disseminate it to their list with a lot less scrutiny, and a lot less attention than the big social media platforms. That's what I've got for you today. Here's what I'd suggest: I'd suggest that we connect and have a positive conversation about how can we find solutions and work through this together.

Let's continue to grow our businesses and your business. Don't be shy. Share your comments and feedback below. I'd appreciate finding out what your thoughts are on these bans if you've been affected by them or not. And if you have, what's your plan of attack, and how do you plan on working through this?

Thanks again, listeners, for tuning in to another Real Marketing Real Fast podcast. I welcome your comments on the blog post, and I also welcome your comments and feedback on iTunes. Don't forget to subscribe to our email list. I've got my email marketing book is just been finalized, and will be coming out shortly. I'll be releasing that at special pricing to our listeners, who have subscribed to my email list at DougMorneau.com. Thanks again. Keep having fun, and we'll catch you on the fly.

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SHARE THIS EPISODE: – FACEBOOK & GOOGLE AD BANS – ARE YOU NEXT?

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3 WAYS TO DEAL WITH FACEBOOK & GOOGLE AD BANS
Facebook and Google ban ads for Bitcoin, Cryptocurrency, Cannabis, and Medical Marijuana
Are your ads and or industry next?
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Resources

Google bans crypto-currency adverts –

  • Google has moved to ban crypto-currency advertising from its platforms.
  • The move will affect promotional campaigns for initial coin offerings, Bitcoin exchanges, digital wallets to store the assets and trading advice.

Facebook is banning all ads promoting cryptocurrencies — including bitcoin and ICOs.  It’s an “intentionally broad” policy aimed at stopping scammers.

  • Facebook is banning all ads that promote cryptocurrencies, including bitcoin, in an effort to prevent people from advertising what the company is calling “financial products and services frequently associated with misleading or deceptive promotional practices.”
  • That means no advertiser — even those that operate legal, legitimate businesses — will be able to promote things like bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies, initial coin offerings — ICOs for short — or binary options, according to a Facebook blog post.

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SHARE THIS EPISODE: – FACEBOOK & GOOGLE AD BANS – ARE YOU NEXT?

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3 WAYS TO DEAL WITH FACEBOOK & GOOGLE AD BANS
Facebook and Google ban ads for Bitcoin, Cryptocurrency, Cannabis, and Medical Marijuana
Are your ads and or industry next?
_ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _

Google Follows Facebook’s Lead in Banning Crypto Advertising

Cryptocurrencies declined on Wednesday amid news that Google is pursuing a ban on all digital currency-related advertising. The crackdown on digital ads could have far-reaching consequences on all..

Facebook cracks down on marijuana firms with dozens of accounts shut down.

  • Social networking site points to violations of community standards as companies take a hit in an industry to which social media is essential.
  • Facebook has recently launched an aggressive campaign to rid its sites of some cannabis-related material, deleting or suspending dozens of accounts operated by marijuana businesses, most of which had operated for years without so much as a warning about offensive material.
  • “We tried to log into Instagram, and a message said we violated their policy, but they won’t say what that violation is,” said Rick Scarpello, CEO of Incredibles, a Denver-based edible company. “I’ve written them every day, saying I’m not doing anything illegal and please reinstate my account.”
  • Cash-only marijuana dispensaries flood California tax office with paper
  • Over the last five years, social media has become essential in the movement to legalize marijuana and as an advertising tool for the industry. Large groups of pot-loving activists on the sites can be mobilized during an election or marketed to by a galaxy of startup companies.

The Cannabis Industry Is Still Fighting for Legitimacy on Social Media Platforms

  • Ads are banned on many networks, and accounts are closed without warning
  • Marijuana is legal in some form (medical, recreational or both) in 30 U.S. states and the District of Columbia, but when it comes to digital media efforts related to the industry, social media platforms seem to be stuck in 1936, when the cult classic Reefer Madness was released.
  • Several experts explained that many social networks, like Facebook and Instagram, hold conservative and antiquated stances when it comes to marketing cannabis. Digital publishers and ad agencies involved in the cannabis industry said they have been hamstrung because they’re banned from advertising on some social platforms, seeing their social accounts (and, in some cases, the influencers they were working with) go up in smoke.

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SHARE THIS EPISODE: – FACEBOOK & GOOGLE AD BANS – ARE YOU NEXT?

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3 WAYS TO DEAL WITH FACEBOOK & GOOGLE AD BANS
Facebook and Google ban ads for Bitcoin, Cryptocurrency, Cannabis, and Medical Marijuana
Are your ads and or industry next?
_ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _

Health Canada considers a sweeping ban on junk food ads aimed at children and teens

  • Government is also revising the Canada Food Guide to include foods that should be avoided altogether
  • Health Canada is considering a widespread ban on the marketing of unhealthy food to kids under the age of 17. It could cover everything from TV, online and print advertising to product labelling, in-store displays and even end some sponsorships for sports teams.
  • The federal government announced the first step in St. John's this morning by launching public consultations on how foods are marketed to kids in Canada.

Facebook overhauls News Feed in favor of ‘meaningful social interactions'

  • Refresh of the News Feed algorithm will de-prioritize content shared by media and businesses in favor of that produced by friends and family, Zuckerberg says
  • Mark Zuckerberg announced a major overhaul of Facebook’s News Feed algorithm that would prioritize “meaningful social interactions” over “relevant content” on Thursday, one week after he pledged to spend 2018 “making sure that time spent on Facebook is time well spent”.

What the Big Facebook News Feed Changes Mean for Brands

  • On January 11th, Mark Zuckerberg announced that Facebook would be changing its news feed algorithm to prioritize content from “friends, family and groups.”
  • “As we roll this out,” Zuckerberg wrote, “You’ll see less public content like posts from businesses, brands, and media. And the public content you see more will be held to the same standard—it should encourage meaningful interactions between people.”
  • Zuckerberg cites “a responsibility to make sure our services aren’t just fun to use, but also good for people’s well-being” as justification for the change, admitting that businesses are going to have to work harder than ever to gain their customers’ attention on the platform.

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SHARE THIS EPISODE: – FACEBOOK & GOOGLE AD BANS – ARE YOU NEXT?

[just click to tweet]

3 WAYS TO DEAL WITH FACEBOOK & GOOGLE AD BANS
Facebook and Google ban ads for Bitcoin, Cryptocurrency, Cannabis, and Medical Marijuana
Are your ads and or industry next?
_ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _

Bitcoin briefly falls below $8,000 after Google says it will ban cryptocurrency ads

  • Bitcoin fell 9 percent following news that Google, the world's largest ad provider, is cracking down on cryptocurrency.
  • Facebook, the second largest online ad provider, took similar action in January by banning ads on “binary options, initial coin offerings, and cryptocurrency.”
  • Some analysts say the bans could be a good thing for the industry over the long term and blame price moves on continuing regulatory uncertainty.

Google bans bitcoin adverts in cryptocurrency crackdown

  • Ads for cryptocurrencies, ICOs, wallets, and exchanges will be blocked from June to prevent scams, following Facebook’s move in January

Cryptocurrencies tumble following Google’s advertising ban

  • Google said it is banning all cryptocurrency ads starting in June.
  • Cryptocurrencies were dealt a blow today when Google announced a widespread ban on related ads. The ban goes into effect in June and covers all aspects of cryptocurrencies, including initial coin offerings (ICOs), exchanges, wallets, and even trading advice.
  • Google is following in the footsteps of Facebook, which implemented a similar ban at the beginning of the year. At the time, Bitcoin declined in value by 12 percent, according to CNBC.

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SHARE THIS EPISODE: – FACEBOOK & GOOGLE AD BANS – ARE YOU NEXT?

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3 WAYS TO DEAL WITH FACEBOOK & GOOGLE AD BANS
Facebook and Google ban ads for Bitcoin, Cryptocurrency, Cannabis, and Medical Marijuana
Are your ads and or industry next?
_ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _

 

Links to other podcast and or blog posts:

Real Marketing Real Fast Podcast – host Doug Morneau – Episode #49

FACEBOOK & GOOGLE AD BANS

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