Pathmatics Finds YouTube Benefits From Facebook and Twitter’s Declining Ad Spends

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The takeaways

  • Digital advertising analysts Pathmatics found YouTube benefitting from declining Facebook and Twitter ad spends, though it did not analyse YouTube spends to a similar extent.
  • Facebook’s top advertisers spent $22.7 million daily in the first 10 days of July, 19% less than the same period in 2019, while Twitter declined by 9%.
  • The Walt Disney Company became the first major Hollywood organization to pause its advertising on Facebook and Instagram.

What happened?


Via Pathmatics

Analysis by Pathmatics shows Facebook and Twitter digital media advertising spends declining by 19% and 9%, respectively, for the month. Compared to July 2019, Facebook’s combined top 1000 advertisers’ daily average spend fell from $28 million to $22.7m. Twitter’s top 1,000’s daily spend declined to $2.13m from $2.34m.

Pathmatics cites Geico, Hulu, Samsung, Pfizer, Hershey, McDonald’s, Starbucks, Kraft Heinz, Molson Coors and LinkedIn as 2020’s 10 highest-spending brands on Facebook with the greatest decline. This saw a combined average daily spend of $776,000 shrink to $14,200 in the first 10 days of July.

The 10 brands spent a combined daily average of $2 million on YouTube, Amazon and Twitter, increasing their spending this year by 125%. Meanwhile, Hulu’s owner, the Walt Disney Company, paused its Facebook and Instagram advertising. According to Pathmatics, the multimedia giant spent $210m alone promoting Disney+ on Facebook. Hulu increased its YouTube spend without adjusting its Twitter buying.


Via Pathmatics

Why this matters

Facebook generated $70 billion in total ad revenue and $91.5m in average daily ad revenue in North America in 2019. Similarly, Twitter made most of its reported $3.5 billion revenue in 2019 from advertising. Though #StopHateforProfit’s Facebook boycott has been influential, brands like McDonald’s, Kraft Heinz, and Hulu aren’t publicly associated with it. Others, including McDonald’s, also paused their Twitter ads.

Pathmatics found Geico now spending a $443,000 daily average on YouTube, up from $195,000 during the first half of 2020. Geico also increased its Twitter spend from an average of $1,000 a day to $4,600 in July. LinkedIn and Starbucks, meanwhile, reduced its Facebook and Twitter ad spends and invested more in YouTube.

Sarah Fleishman, senior manager of digital marketing at Pathmatics, said, “There’s no doubt brands will continue to spend on digital ads, the question just becomes where, and on what terms.”

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