Facebook Scams. The Rise & Fall of Facebook Marketing

Before we get started!

Writing an article about Facebook Scams and the decline of Meta Marketing could be seen as counterintuitive. It’s almost like admitting that an agency such as ours, is no longer effective at using Facebook Marketing. On the other hand, as an agency that is committed to ethical and transparent marketing practices, we feel that it is important to be open about the risks associated with Facebook Marketing, even if it means losing some business.

Ultimately, our decision whether or not to write an article about Facebook Scams and the decline of Facebook Marketing is a business decision that we felt important for our customers and local businesses trying to gain a better understanding. By being transparent about the risks associated with Facebook Marketing, we feel we can help businesses make informed decisions about their marketing strategies.

About Facebook Scams

Facebook was once the king of social media marketing. Businesses of all sizes flocked to the platform to reach their target audiences with targeted ads. In 2017, Facebook’s ad revenue was $55 billion. But in recent years, as Facebook’s popularity has declined, its Ad revenue has surprisingly increased. In the fourth quarter of 2021, Facebook reported its first-ever quarterly decline in daily active users (DAUs). The number of DAUs fell by 500,000 to 1.929 billion. This was the first time that Facebook’s DAUs had declined since the company went public in 2012.

On the flip-side however, in 2020 Facebook ad Revenue increased by another 36.5% to $114.93 billion a year later. By 2022, Facebook’s ad revenues had hit $135.94 billion. With a quick look at those numbers, one might almost conclude that as the adverts full of Facebook Scams increase, so do Meta’s profits.

There are a number of reasons for Facebook’s decline. One reason is that users are becoming increasingly skeptical of ads on the platform. A study by the Pew Research Center found that 64% of Americans believe that most ads on social media are misleading.

Facebook Scams & Hacks

Another reason for Facebook’s decline is that the platform has become a hub for online scams and hacking. In 2021, there were over 1 billion reports of online scams on Facebook. Then in 2022, there were over 2 billion reports of hacking on the platform. That’s a lot of Facebook Scams and just the ones that got reported. Frighteningly, 2023 looks set to blow these numbers, out of the water.

Indeed, Facebook Scams & Hacking have led to a decrease in trust in the platform and businesses are now hesitant to advertise on there. A study by the Association of National Advertisers found that 60% of advertisers are concerned about the safety of their ads on Facebook.

So, what does this mean for businesses that are still using Facebook Marketing?

It means that they are taking a risk. If their ads are associated with a scam or a hack, it could damage their brand reputation. In some cases, it could even lead to legal action.

More troubling is the inaction being taken by Meta, to prevent criminals using their platforms to mislead and ultimately, steal from their users. But then again, why would they, with $135.94 billion in revenue attributed to at the very least a 36.5% of dodgy Facebook scams. Not much incentive, right!

Facebook Scam Example
Example of Facebook Scams

Here are some statistics on how many fake and scam adverts appear on the average person’s Facebook Feed:

  • According to a study by the BBC, there are over 500,000 fake and scam adverts on Facebook every day.
  • The study also found that 70% of people have seen a fake or scam advert on Facebook.
  • And 40% of people have clicked on a fake or scam advert on Facebook.

These statistics show that Facebook is a major problem for businesses that are trying to protect their brand reputation. If you are considering using Facebook Marketing, you should be aware of the risks.

Just a few Facebook Scams you might come across
  • Fake celebrity endorsements. These ads will often feature a picture of a famous person, such as a celebrity or athlete, endorsing a product or service. However, the celebrity has likely never endorsed the product or service, and the ad is simply a scam to get you to click on it.
  • Discounted products or services. These ads will offer products or services at a heavily discounted price. However, the product or service is often fake, or the quality is much lower than what is advertised.
  • Free trials or giveaways. These ads will offer you a free trial or giveaway of a product or service. However, you will usually have to provide your personal information, such as your credit card number, in order to participate. Once you provide your information, the scammers will use it to steal your money or identity.
  • Online romance scams. These ads will feature a picture of an attractive person who is looking for love. However, the person is not real, and the ad is simply a way for the scammer to get you to send them money.
  • Phishing scams. These ads will look like they are from a legitimate company, such as your bank or credit card company. However, they are actually from scammers who are trying to steal your personal information.
  • Facebook marketplace shipping scams, where a scammer convinces a seller to ship an item to them without paying for it. The scammer may offer to pay more than the asking price or send a fake shipping label. Equally popular Facebook Scams are to ask buyer to pay shipping, but never send item.

If you see an ad on Facebook that seems too good to be true, it probably is. Be careful about clicking on any links or providing any personal information. If you think you have been scammed, you should report the ad to Facebook (good luck with that) and to the Police.

Here are some tips to help you avoid scam ads on Facebook:

  • Be suspicious of ads that offer products or services at a heavily discounted price.
  • Don’t click on links in ads unless you are sure they are from a legitimate source.
  • Don’t provide your personal information, such as your credit card number, in response to an ad unless you are sure it is legitimate.
  • Be wary of ads that feature celebrity endorsements. Make sure to check the source of the ad to see if it is actually from the celebrity.
  • Report any suspicious ads to Facebook. You can do this by clicking on the three dots below the ad and selecting “Report ad.”

Should you be using Facebook to Advertise?

Facebook Marketing is no longer the surefire way to reach your target audience. The platform is facing increasing competition from other social media platforms and it has become a hub for online scams and hacking. Businesses that are still using Facebook Marketing should be aware of the risks and take steps to protect their brand reputation. Besides Facebook Scams, it would also be wise to do your own research when it comes to other platforms such as Tik-Tok, Snap Chat and so on. They may not be completely innocent either.

Tarnished by Association

Businesses that advertise on Facebook & Instagram are at risk of damaging their brand reputation. If a legitimate business’s ad appears alongside a scam ad, it could give the impression that the legitimate business is also involved in fraudulent activity. This could lead to customers losing trust in your business, which could damage its reputation and bottom line.

If you are a legitimate business that is considering advertising on Facebook, it is important to weigh the risks and benefits carefully. If you decide to advertise on Facebook, it is important to monitor your ads closely and to take steps to protect your brand reputation.

Where do Brag Design sit in all of this?

Brag Design are one of Melbournes leading digital marketing agencies and have been in business for over 10 years. Our team of experienced professionals are dedicated to helping businesses grow their online presence.

In recent years, Brag Design has become increasingly concerned about the risks associated with Facebook and Instagram Marketing. The platform has become a hub for online scams and hacking, leading to businesses that advertise on the platform being at risk of damaging their brand reputation.

As a result, Brag Design has made the decision to no longer provide Facebook and Instagram Marketing services. However, we will continue to support businesses with Google Ads, SEO and great Website Design.

Google Ads is a pay-per-click advertising platform that allows businesses to target their ads to specific audiences. SEO is the process of optimising a website so that it ranks higher in search engine results pages. And great website design is essential for businesses who want to make a good first impression on potential customers.

Brag Design believes that these three marketing channels are the most effective way to improve online visibility for businesses. They are also the most reliable and trustworthy channels, as they do not pose the same risks as Facebook and Instagram Marketing.

Brag Design is committed to helping businesses grow their online presence in a safe and ethical way. By no longer providing Facebook and Instagram Marketing services, we are taking a stand against the risks associated with these platforms.

So have Facebook scams completely ruined the platform?

With Facebook & Instagram there are several types of advert. There is the Business Manager and Boosted Posts. The there is targeted ads and re-marketing. Remarketing is advertising to users who have already engaged with your business in one way or another, which goes someway to building trust, but still users may be cautious of clicking your ad, just in case this time it isn’t you. Probably the most dangerous Facebook Scams are the Product Ads. So if you are selling product, it is probably safer to simply use your Facebook / Instagram free business page, to reach out to your existing group. This won’t cost anything and your audience already trusts you.

For business such as Restaurants, Bars even Hotels, Meta marketing can still work. Local businesses who are already well known can still find success with Facebook / Instagram Ads, but if you are building a new brand or business, special care should be taken when advertising here.

Why we prefer Google Ads

Here are some of the reasons why Brag Design believes that Google Ads, SEO, and great website design are the best way to improve online visibility for businesses:

  • Google Ads is a proven way to reach your target audience. Google Ads ads are displayed at the top of search engine results pages, so they are highly visible to potential customers.
  • SEO is a long-term investment that can pay off big dividends. When your website is optimised for search engines, it will rank higher in search results pages, which will lead to more traffic to your website.
  • Great website design is essential for making a good first impression on potential customers. A well-designed website will be easy to navigate and will provide visitors with the information they need.

If you are a business owner who is looking to improve your online visibility, Brag Design can help. We have a team of honest, experienced professionals who can develop a custom marketing plan that meets your specific needs.

Contact Brag Design today to learn more about how we can help you grow your business online.