Meta has appointed Spark Foundry to handle global media planning and buying duties following a pitch that launched in March covering Facebook, Messenger, Instagram, and WhatsApp. Meta's spokesperson told MARKETING-INTERACTIVE that Spark Foundry will be responsible for strategic thought leadership, media innovation, planning and investment, cross-channel approaches, tools, tech and operations. The company declined to comment on the length of the appointment and the APAC markets that will be leading the account.
The pitch was managed by ID Comms and Mindshare and dentsu are the incumbents. GroupM's spokesperson told MARKETING-INTERACTIVE that it has decided to withdraw from Facebook’s global media review.
"While we will not be participating in the review, we look ahead to future opportunities building on the successful work we created together since 2014. We are proud of the work that our teams and people have done for Facebook and wish them the very best in their media selection process," the spokesperson added. Meanwhile, dentsu declined to comment. MARKETING-INTERACTIVE has reached out to Spark Foundry for comment.
The media pitch came two years after Meta named Wieden + Kennedy, BBDO, Ogilvy, Leo Burnett and Droga5 to lead global creative strategy and production for each of its apps and corporate brand. At the same time, Spark Foundry was also appointed following the rebrand of Facebook's parent company to Meta last week.
The rebrand comes as the tech giant shifts its focus from social media to the metaverse, with the new name representing the next chapter that is a future created by everyone that will take society beyond what digital connection makes possible today. CEO Mark Zuckerberg said the company will be metaverse-first moving forward and not Facebook-first. As part of the rebranding, Facebook will begin trading under the stock ticker, MVRS, on 1 December.
Some of Meta's popular apps and products, including the Facebook app, will keep the same name, while some of the others will be changing. For example, Facebook Reality Labs will become Reality Labs, Oculus Quest from Facebook will become Meta Quest; Oculus App will become Meta Quest App. This change means they are all now from Meta, not Facebook.
Meta has been facing media scrutiny over its ill effects and allegations that it prioritises profit over user safety. Details were first revealed in The Wall Street Journal's investigative series, The Facebook Files, and on 1 November, whistleblower Frances Haugen urged Zuckerberg to step down and "allow change rather than devoting resources to a rebrand", Reuters reported.
Haugen said during the opening night of Web Summit, a tech festival held in Lisbon, that the company will unlikely change if Zuckerberg remains in his role. She added that this perhaps is a chance for someone else to lead the company, and that the tech giant would be stronger with an individual who is willing to double down on safety.
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