Facebook probably has the best and largest database of humanity's relationship status, after all. Almost everyone checks or changes their relationship status on Facebook from time to time — and dating companies like Match.
If you're a dating site, Facebook is your Super Bowl. But you won't see a bunch of smaller, niche dating sites advertising there. That's because Facebook has banned them. And they're going to stay banned, Facebook tells Business Insider. The policy has frustrated a whole range of companies who make small, niche dating sites, like CatholicSingles. This week, a CEO at another dating site, who asked not to be identified, described to BI just how frustrating the ban has become.
We agreed to keep this executive anonymous because he is hoping to repair his relationship with Facebook. The problem is that several major dating site brands — like Zoosk, Match. But Facebook isn't taking new clients, clients who cannot follow Facebook's rules ads must be tasteful , and clients who do not have a pre-existing relationship with Facebook sales staff that dates back to sometime in We'd be fine if Facebook wanted to ban all dating apps for whatever reason.
The problem is they're letting the big guys in while keeping the small, innovative companies out. So the rich will continue getting richer, and in the end the consumer will suffer because competition is reduced. It's simply impossible to gain traction as a new dating site today without access to Facebook ads.
Advertisement Facebook says it has had a lot of complaints from users about the prevalence of dating ads in the past, so it is continuing to be strict. The company tells Business Insider: Making sure ads are relevant and high quality is a top priority for us, so we updated our policy a few months ago to require manual review for ads for online dating services. We got a lot of negative feedback from people about many of these ads, and in some cases they violated various policies.
To keep the quality of ads on Facebook high, we are only allowing ads for dating sites to appear on Facebook from advertisers who have Facebook account representatives. This ensures the manual review and counsel - to show the best ads possible - is in place. One of the conspiracy theories currently making the rounds among the smaller dating companies is that the bigger companies have cut a deal with Facebook to carve out smaller companies in return for guaranteed ad spending levels.
A spokesperson from one of the major dating brands that is actively advertising on the site told Business Insider that idea is garbage. Facebook first activated a ban on small dating sites back in January. That hurt small companies because Valentine's Day, Feb. Initially, Facebook was going to revisit the policy after Valentine's Day but has since decided to extend the ban.
In the meantime, inability access Facebook is ruining some dating businesses. Our source was banned in January. I continue to see dating ads from my direct competitors on Facebook on almost every page view. Here's our source's story about being banned from Facebook: Our first product went live last year and we executed our strategy well - we self managed our Facebook mobile app install campaign and got a very nice ROI.
Usage continued to grow week after week, we reached the 1 spot in the app store when searching for the particular vertical we went after, got tons of 5 star reviews, and all was well. Our ads ran successfully for months, until one day in January this year when our ads were abruptly taken down by Facebook, telling us that we needed to be "approved advertisers" in order to run dating ads on their platform. When I pressed further about what an approved advertiser was or how I could become one, the only answer I got, from multiple representatives, was that it's just a company with a prior relationship with Facebook, and that they're not currently accept any new approved advertisers at this time.
That was in January. It's now June, and since then nothing has changed. We've tried getting info from friends who work at Facebook, prior representatives we've worked with we've been advertising on Facebook since in previous non-dating sites we've built , only to receive the same boilerplate response about approved advertisers.
We even tried going through a large intermediary which specializes in mobile ad campaigns, and they were equally surprised to learn about this moratorium.
Their other dating clients were also given the boot. Facebook's own ad reps are in the dark too. When you press the reps further, they will tell you that they personally don't know anything about it, that it's strange, and that the dating ads moratorium is coming directly from [Facebook management].