GANDT Fireside Chat #006 | Facebook starts a new Messenger Rooms; Google cuts their marketing budget

Post by Kathrin Fuhrer

True to our motto “Working Out Loud”, we at GANDT Ventures exchange our thoughts and ideas on current news topics in the world of online marketing, digital retail, and e-commerce. This helps us uncover opportunities that can be used for companies and our clients as part of our daily business.

But most of all, it is a lot of fun and a great way to share knowledge. Our podcast-style chats are available to anyone who is interested to find out more about what Google, Facebook, Amazon and the likes are up to.


Google is cutting its marketing budget for the second half of 2020 by aprox. 50%. A recruitment freeze is already in place in some departments.

The US company has told its marketing staff that it is cutting the marketing budget. Reportedly, they also introduced a recruitment freeze for both full-time employees and contractors. Google is also cutting some of the job positions that are still available.

This year, Google will focus only on key marketing services. While at the same time they restrict the hiring of new employees throughout the year. This shows drastic steps by Google, which has not been communicated to employees to this extent.


Facebook and the 100 million plan for SMEs

On 17 March, Facebook announced for the first time that it wants to support mainly small and medium-sized companies with a USD 100 million protective shield.

In a podcast with Facebook Germany boss Tino Krause and t3n, Mr. Krause elaborates on how the Corona Pandemic has affected small- and large businesses alike.

In organic terms, Facebook is experiencing a 70% upswing on the platform. With regards to online marketing spendings, the figures look very different from industry to industry. One of the industries that is most affected globally is the travel sector. “Whereas the food delivery industry is clearly on the upswing here,” explains Krause. People invest more time and effort in personal development, which is why we see an increase in advertising spending on Facebook in the areas of education and language development skills. On the whole, advertising spending have decreased, but not as much as expected, says Tino Krause.

In our first Fireside Chat we had already talked about the Facebook protective shield and asked ourselves how this budget would be divided. Tino Krause’s statements regarding the division remain vague. The Facebook Germany CEO is unable to elaborate on the selection criteria.


What Kraus promised

The only criterion that is known is that applicants don’t have to have worked together with Facebook to benefit from the fund, he promises.

Krause adds that it’s not just ad loans but cash payments as well, which aren’t loans, but are intended as a gift. Facebook wants to support small and medium-sized companies in particular and use the “grant” to give their economy a boost.

In addition to self-help, tailor-made webinar series are offered, which can be used by companies to help them build a website and learn to use all the tools that Facebook has to offer. Furthermore, donation tools are used to enable local small businesses to receive direct financial support. Last but not least, a voucher service based on the principle “Pay now buy later,” is planned to launch soon.


Facebook Messenger Rooms

This week Facebook has launched a new product – a video chat tool called “Messenger Rooms“. You can log in via Whatsapp, Instagram, Facebook or a Facebook Portal Device to dive into a video conference room with relative ease. What is notably different about Facebook Messenger is that it is the first fully integrated FB-product that allows the user to use any of Facebooks products to log in. Facebook owns and runs WhatsApp, Instagram, and Facebook (Messenger) itself of course, but it has never brought a product to market that allows for cross-platform communication. This makes networking with friends and family quick and frictionless. Messenger Rooms is available on mobile and desktop devices; to Facebook, it represents a new era of unplanned being together via video. Messenger Rooms is available on mobile and desktop devices; to Facebook, it represents a new era of unplanned being together via video.

At the moment of writing this article, a video call with 8 people is possible, but this will be expanded to 50, in the next few weeks.

Facebook’s Head of Messenger, Stan Chudnovsky says that the demand for one-on-one and group video conferencing was already on the rise before the Covid-19 crisis, but is now exploding through the crisis.

The introduction of “Rooms” is accompanied by a number of other video updates that are designed to make up for the lack of options within Facebook communication tools. WhatsApp currently has 700 million people a day using audio and video calls, while Facebook and Instagram live video now reaches 800 million people a day.

An example of one of the new updates is the ability to select a virtual background to hide what is really behind the person, Chudnovsky said.


Agenda | GANDT Fireside Chat Video #006

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