The demand for paid ads on Facebook is decreasing as brands respond to the uncertain economic situation, according to new data from Socialbakers.

The social media marketing platform recently looked at the likely impact of COVID-19 on brands’ Facebook ad spend, cost-per-click (CPC) and engagement in Q1. Overall the study found that paid ads are decreasing as is CPC, while organic content is picking up.

Socialbakers CEO Yuval Ben-Itzhak noted that due to uncertainty about the economic environment brands are slowing down investment and this trend is expected to continue as businesses look for less costly alternatives to engage their audiences.

“That means that organic strategies driven by the right content may win during this period,” he added. “Since we believe that now, more than ever, customers want to hear from the brands they follow, cutting back on social media investment could be a mistake on the part of the brands. Brand marketers need to be mindful that, faced with the prospect of social distancing and more time at home, their audiences will be looking to the digital world to keep them feeling connected, updated, and entertained.”

Key findings from the study:

  • When comparing paid vs organic, the study found that across all regions, brands have been posting more organic content since the start of the year, as paid budgets are likely being frozen because of economic uncertainty. This correlates with the data relating to CPC.

  • Facebook CPC costs have been slowly declining since the start of the year across all regions, however in Eastern Asia, the CPC has started to pick-up again as business starts to take off again in the region.

  • In North America going into December 2019, CPC was around $0.64. By mid-March the data shows that CPC had halved to $0.32.

  • Data for Western Europe tells a similar story. Going into December 2019, CPC was around $0.43. By mid-March the data shows that CPC had more than halved to $0.20.

The company found that overall engagement data on brand profiles per region shows that engagement levels have been steady throughout. However, with more people practicing social distancing in the real world, this will soon translate into higher social media engagement in the digital world.

The data is based on 2,376,721 Facebook posts from 40,563 brand profiles across multiple global regions from January 1 – March 15, 2020.

Sourced from Socialbakers