Are Glitches Leading to Higher Costs?

Are technical glitches in Meta’s ad delivery algorithm leading to higher costs? That’s the claim coming from an article from Bloomberg.

The Complaints

The article says that Meta “has been hammered by major performance issues, according to numerous marketers. The cost of running ad campaigns is up significantly, while results are mixed and ensuing sales are down.”

One media buyer says CPM and CPC costs are up by a factor of two or three. Another says she saw a 20-40 percent drop in ROAS for a few accounts.

Meta’s Response

Here’s Meta’s response:

Our ads system is working as expected for the vast majority of advertisers. We recently fixed a few technical issues and are researching a small amount of additional reports from advertisers to ensure the best possible results for businesses using our apps.

Numbers from Within Marketing Pulse

I like to use Within Marketing Pulse as a resource for confirming widespread changes like those reported here.

They aren’t reporting a rise in CPC at all — if anything, it’s dropped since the start of the year.

Within Marketing Pulse

Facebook CPM costs are virtually unchanged year over year during the past six months. Instagram CPM costs are up, but a 20-70% increase there can’t explain the complaints of CPM costs overall being up “by a factor of two or three.”

Within Marketing Pulse

Is This a Problem?

Is this isolated or widespread? Is it a problem at all? We don’t know. It’s incredibly difficult to say.

Even the advertisers cited in this article have isolated claims for some of their clients (not all) that refer to increases in CPM and CPC or drops in ROAS that are within the realm of potentially normal. You might be seeing bad results, but glitches don’t necessarily explain them.

That doesn’t mean that there haven’t been glitches or that these glitches aren’t leading directly to bad performance in some cases. But without a more substantial sample size backed with data, or a clearer ackownlgedgment from Meta, there isn’t much to this yet.

For the record, I’m not seeing anything out of the ordinary right now. How about you?