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Advertisers spent more on Facebook after the Cambridge Analytica scandal broke

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By John Glenday | Reporter

April 12, 2018 | 3 min read

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Advertisers appear to have shrugged off the Cambridge Analytica data scandal which threatens to engulf the business, with figures suggesting that ad spend on the platform jumped even as the scandal began commanding global headlines.

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Advertisers spent more on Facebook after the Cambridge Analytica scandal broke

Technology firm 4C calculated that Facebook enjoyed a 62% year-on-year increase in ad spend to the first quarter of 2018, an impressive figure though one that pales in comparison with the triple digit growth rates recorded by Snapchat and Instagram, which recorded comparable growth of 234 and 136% respectively.

More surprisingly this growth continued week-on-week through 17 and 24 March as the Cambridge Analytica scandal made headlines, when growth came in at 7% and 15% respectively, seemingly illustrating the robustness of Facebook’s offer.

Aaron Goldman, CMO at 4C Insights, commented: “We’re seeing continued strength for Facebook advertising despite the negative headlines. For some time now, marketers in the UK have been actively preparing for GDPR so they are comfortable dealing with issues pertaining to data collection. In this case the main issue is not related to advertising and the repercussions such as removal of Facebook Partner Categories have not had a material impact. Targeting solutions like those offered by 4C rely on public engagement data with brand content, not user-level access, so we expect further growth.”

The Cambridge Analytica scandal shows no sign of abating with Mark Zuckerberg testifying before Congress for two days straight.

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Cambridge Analytica

Cambridge Analytica is a British political consulting firm which combines data mining, data brokerage, and data analysis with strategic communication for the electoral process. It was started in 2013 as an offshoot of the SCL Group.The company is partly owned by the family of Robert Mercer, an American hedge-fund manager who supports many politically conservative causes.

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