How many times have you scrolled through social media and been interrupted by an ad? What if you could pay to enjoy ad-free social media?
In Europe, it’s possible!
Meta, the owner of Instagram and Facebook, has started offering ad-free subscription options in Europe. Starting at €9.99 on desktop and €12.99 on iOS and Android per month, Instagram and Facebook users in the European Union can scroll as much as they like without ever seeing another ad.
However, Meta isn’t the only tech giant to be doing this. TikTok reportedly tested an ad-free paid plan with a group of users in an unnamed English-speaking market in October. Last year, Snapchat released Snapchat+, which offers a paid subscription for ad-free enjoyment and now has five million users.
While the direction of ad-free social media may seem like a godsend for users, what does it mean for those in the marketing and advertising industries?
What Is Ad-Free Social Media?
Ad-free social media is exactly what it sounds like: social media without irritating ads popping up every few posts.
In an ad-free social media environment, users can interact, share content and engage with others without the interruption or influence of advertisements.
Several social media platforms are testing ad-free subscription services, such as Meta in Europe.
As mentioned above, Meta (Facebook and Instagram) recently started offering ad-free subscriptions for its European Union users. For €9.99 on desktop and €12.99 on iOS and Android per month, users can enjoy Instagram and Facebook without seeing ads.
These ad-free subscriptions have begun due to the EU regulators’ data privacy crackdown.
So, as well as privacy concerns, what are some other reasons why social media platforms may choose to provide ad-free subscriptions?
- Improved user experience: Without ads, the user interface can be cleaner and more focused on content and interactions, which could potentially lead to a more enjoyable experience.
- Alternative revenue streams: Ad-free social media platforms may use alternative methods of generating revenue, such as subscriptions or selling additional features.
- Community and content focus: Without the influence of advertisers, social media platforms could focus more on fostering a community and encouraging the creation of quality content.
- Reducing misinformation: Ad-driven models can sometimes incentivise clickbait, misleading content or spam. An ad-free model may have fewer incentives for such content, potentially improving the overall quality of information shared.
- Building trust: By eliminating ads, social media platforms can foster a sense of trust and community among their users, as it removes the perception that user attention is being sold to the highest bidder.
- Competitive edge: Offering an ad-free experience can set a social media platform apart from its competitors. It can be a unique selling point, attracting users who prefer an uninterrupted, more streamlined experience.
The Implications For Marketing And Advertising
So, with the introduction of subscriptions for ad-free social media platforms, what are the implications it could have on the marketing and advertising industries?
While the ad-free subscriptions for Instagram and Facebook are currently only operating in the European Union, platforms may see it as a positive and introduce subscriptions around the world.
By doing this, social media platforms could have additional income streams.
Finding ways to reach ad-opted audiences
When it comes to creating ads, advertisers heavily rely on data and personalisation to deliver relevant content.
With the introduction of ad-free tiers, a portion of an advertiser’s audience may opt out of the ads, making it harder for them to reach their audience. Due to this, advertisers may need to come up with different ways to target and advertise to their audience.
Maintaining ad reach
The main goal of advertisers is to maximise ad reach and maintain a strong performance, resulting in an increase in profits.
With the introduction of ad-free social media, advertisers may need to adjust their advertising budgets to account for the changes in user preferences.
Importance of quality content
In a world where social media users no longer want to see ads, the content from businesses, marketers and advertisers has to be of high quality.
Advertisers and marketers will need to focus on creating content that easily captures users’ attention organically instead of relying solely on targeting techniques.
As more social media platforms join the ad-free subscription space, the competition will increase.
Due to this, social media platforms may have to continually enhance their offerings and provide users with more value for their subscription fees.
Effective Social Media Advertising with Anchor
While ad-free social media subscriptions have only just been released in Europe, it’s only a matter of time before they reach Australia.
If you’ve got a business and are trying but failing at getting your social media off the ground, look no further than Anchor Digital.
Our team of experienced and dedicated professionals are up-to-date with the latest trends and tools to create compelling content and social media campaigns to drive customers to your business.
Whether you’re looking for organic or paid social media help, we’re the team to come to.
If you’d like to learn more about how we can skyrocket your brand awareness, leads and sales through social media, drop us a line.