X loses revenue as advertisers stop spending on Elon Musk’s platform

Brands are pulling paid advertising from social media platform X to distance themselves from its new owner, Elon Musk, over his support for an anti-Semitic post.

Musk referred to a post claims that Jews “have been pushing the exact kind of dialectical hatred against whites that they claim they want people to stop using against them” as “the actual truth,” landing him in hot water with companies that is among the platform’s top advertisers.

Apple, Disney, Coca Cola and other major companies have since removed paid ads from the platform in moves that could deprive X of up to $75 million in revenue, according to a New York Times report.

“He often inserts himself into big public conflicts or incidents,” New York Times technology reporter Ryan Mac told CBS News, referring to the outspoken billionaire.

“Now, after these comments, after this one post he made with a white nationalist conspiracy theory, advertisers are pulling back during the most important holiday period for any business that does advertising,” Mac said.

Ad sales softened almost immediately after Musk took over the platform, formerly known as Twitter, last year. But the losses may be even greater than the managers had expected.

In the US, advertising revenue dipped 60% over the summer according to Mac. The latest decline in spending comes during the important holiday shopping season, when retailers typically increase their ad spending.

“It’s 90% of the company’s revenue, so it’s a big, big hit for the company,” Mac added.

Elon Musk faces backlash from lawmakers, companies over endorsement of anti-Semitic X post


Hate-love relationship

Advertisers are attracted to social media platforms like X given the large number of users and the frequency of their interactions on the site. For this reason, Mac said many companies have what he called “a love-hate relationship with X.”

Reached for comment, X confirmed the pause in some brands’ advertising spending while questioning their motives.

“These brands also know how indispensable X is to their community,” X told CBS MoneyWatch. “Instead, they simply post ‘ads’ for free to continue engaging with their respective communities,” the company said, referring to brands like Amazon, DisneyPlus and others that have paused or are considering pausing paid advertising on the platform while continuing to post content on brand-owned X accounts.

Musk in May appointed veteran advertising executive Linda Yaccarino as CEO of Xthen called Twitter, to convince major brands to return to the social media service after one loss of advertisers after his takeover.

Mac said Yaccarino, who still reports to Musk, has “had his hands tied” since Musk is still in control. “Her boss tends to bug X on a daily basis and I think it’s very much damage control at this point,” he said.

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