Why Facebook banned ICO ads

In case you haven’t heard, Facebook recently banned all ads for ICOs and cryptocurrencies.

It even lumped them in with binary options, which are probably some of the scammiest offers being sold on the Internet.

Now this has been a bit of a shock in the crypto community, and it’s got people wondering:


Of course, Facebook says it’s doing this to protect users from scams.

Crypto fans have their own interpretations.

SomeĀ  commented that Facebook is just an old dinosaur and it doesn’t get the new technology.

Others say that Facebook is trying to pave the way for its own cryptocurrency.

While still others say it’s because Facebook is trying to steer clear of U.S. regulators.

Maybe all these are a part of it.

I have my own interpretation however. Here are some possible reasons in my opinion:

# 1. Facebook doesn’t like it when advertisers pull users off its platform

Facebook encourages advertisers to promote their content on Facebook.

Boost your Facebook posts.

Get people to like and share your content on Facebook.

Get new Facebook group memebrs.

Of course, you can run Facebook ad campaigns that get users off Facebook. However, if you are pretty effective at it, there’s a good chance your ads will soon run into some Facebook censorship committe.

I think this is a part of what happened with ICOs, which typically do most of their communicating through Telegram, Medium, and email, rather than through Facebook.

# 2. ICOs advertise intensely for a short time, then disappear

Not many ICO companies I’ve seen advertise after the ICOs itself.

After all, they’ve raised their money.

This of course isn’t a good model for any advertising platform, which makes most its money from companies that keep coming back and paying regularly, month after month.

Therefore, it’s possible Facebook simply thinks kicking off ICOs isn’t a big loss.

# 3. Facebook generally isn’t interested in helping their advertisers succeed

Facebook, just like Google, lives off ads.

However, they live off ads best when those ads aren’t too successful.

If your ad is only marginally successful, you will have an incentive to keep coming back and spending more money for marginally successful ads.

However, if your ad is wildly successful, too much of that value flows to you rather than to Facebook.

Not surprisingly, both Facebook and Google routinely recommend advertising strategies that they know don’t pay off for the advertisers themselves.

Now I don’t have direct insight into any ICO’s advertising campaigns on Facebook.

But considering the typically large sums of money that get invested in an ICO by even average investors, it’s quite possible that many ICOs simply had campaigns that were too successful to keep running on Facebook.

That’s my take. Quite cynical, but also likely to be accurate.

John Bejakovic

P.S. One of the most powerful advertising features of Facebook is retargeting, when you basically show your ads over and over to people who have expressed some interest in what you’re selling (for example, by visiting your site).

This makes sense. As an advertiser, you have to be proactive by staying in constant touch with your audience, and that’s why retargeting was valuable.

But there’s an even better way of proactively contacting your audience, which builds more trust, more desire, and a stronger relationship than retargeted ads do.

Plus, it’s cheaper than paying Facebook for ads.

I’m talking about email. And if you need help getting people onto your email list, or sending them emails that will proactively make you money, I might be able to help. You can find out more here: