GM Says “No Thanks” to Facebook Advertising

Stephen Booser sent me an e-mail today in which he notes that GM has pulled its advertising program out of Facebook due to lack of results.

“Could this be the beginning of a realization by those who have things to sell that they have been sold a bill of goods by the young marketers most of whom, it seems to me, have never asked a closing question in their lives?” he asks rhetorically.

He suggests that “social” is not a synonym for “sell.” I believe the trendy marketing imperative of “having a conversation” is not the same as “selling  a product.” In fact, having a conversation may be the fall-back position for those marketers who don’t know how to sell.

Your thoughts?


19 thoughts on “GM Says “No Thanks” to Facebook Advertising

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  • And I might also add: You can talk yourself right out of a sale. I’ve seen poor sales people do it all the time.

    This hip notion that “having a conversation” just wastes a prospects valuable time. So much for Social Media being a marketing mechanism.

  • I don’t blame them at all. Facebook is a testy media. Most of the people on it are not necessarily the people who are looking for new cars. Cars sales are pushed through word of mouth more than anything. I personally own Subarus and will talk them up until I’m blue in the face. Conversely I’ve owned two fords and I will never purchase them again and if asked I will tell anyone why I wouldn’t purchase them again. I feel car sales are a personal experience type of sale and no amount of facebook likes or updates are going to ever beat word of mouth references and test drives. Facebook marketing isn’t for everyone.

  • Yes, I agree Facebook marketing isn’t for everyone. There might some ads that won’t be suitable to all Facebook users.

  • I agree with Jim (above) – intuitively I knew the people on Facebook or other “social media” sites were typically the younger folks doing the posting – Word of mouth is by far the best “selling” done either online or off.

    Good for GM – we dropped our social media marketing a long time ago – who we found using these apps are our competitors and rarely the customer looking for our products/services.

  • I haven’t done any Facebook ads on the OEM level, but I have on the dealership level and while it’s not always perfect science we seem to do pretty good.

    For instance I did an ad in a city in New York on both Facebook and Adwords. It was for the Lincoln Navigator and both ads had the same copy. I set it for a 20 mile radius and the ad on Facebook had double the number of clicks. The conversion rate was less but it sold more vehicles than the Google ad. Also, since the clicks were less both ads spent roughly the same amount so as for as an ROI standpoint the Facebook ad was better.

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