In a move that should surprise very few, Facebook has announced that it will be bringing advertisements to WhatsApp Status from next year onwards. Olivier Ponteville, the Head of Media at Be Connect Agency who is attending the Facebook Marketing Summit in Rotterdam tweeted out the announcement along with a photo. “WhatsApp will bring Stories Ads in its status product in 2020,” Ponteville said on Twitter.
WhatsApp is one of the few Facebook-owned platforms that does not currently offer targeted advertisements. However, the addition of ads to the ‘Status’ feature should change that. To recall, the Status feature allows users to post photos as well as videos, which disappear after 24 hours. It’s a feature similar to Instagram stories as well as Snapchat. Back in November last year, WhatsApp Vice President, Christ Daniels said that the company would show advertisements in Status, which would become the primary monetisation mode for the company.
If you’re not happy with WhatsApp getting advertisements, know that you aren’t the only one. Back in 2017. Brian Acton, Co-Founder of Whatsapp announced that he was quitting the company in order to start his own non-profit technology foundation. In an interview with Forbes last year, Acton revealed that he was under pressure from Mark Zuckerberg and Sheryl Sandburg to monetize WhatsApp and pushed back the decision. Acton revealed that Facebook wanted to pursue monetisation of WhatsApp in two ways, one of them being targeted ads in Status, which did not sit well with him. "Targeted advertising is what makes me unhappy," Acton said.
It seems like there is no love loss between Acton and Facebook. Following the Cambridge Analytica Scandal, Acton joined and supported the mass movement of encouraging people to delete Facebook. “It’s time. #DeleteFacebook,” his tweet read. As of writing, this was also his last tweet.