Morning Consult Brands: Meta to Reinstate Trump’s Accounts on Facebook, Instagram


Essential marketing and PR news & intel to start your day.
January 26, 2023
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Name, Image and Like…It?

In July 2021, three words changed the trajectory of college sports and brand marketing budgets forever: name, image and likeness (NIL). A year and a half after the NCAA ruled that student-athletes could profit off of these things, senior sports reporter Mark J. Burns and I set out to evaluate the NIL landscape. Are NIL campaigns grabbing consumers’ attention? What’s worked so far, and what hasn’t? What does the future hold?


Despite fewer than 1 in 5 U.S. adults having seen, read or heard about any of the 10 recent Division I NIL deals tested in a new Morning Consult survey, athletes, brands and NCAA leaders are still largely bullish on the nascent marketing channel. Read more of our reporting here: 18 Months Into the NIL Era, Athletes, Fans and Brands Are Mostly Happy. But Messiness Remains.


Today’s Top News

  • Meta Platforms Inc. announced it plans to reinstate former president Donald Trump’s accounts on Facebook and Instagram “in the coming weeks.” The reinstatement, which comes two years after Trump was suspended from both platforms over posts related to the Jan. 6 attack on the U.S. Capitol, will subject Trump to a slew of new Meta policies around restricting accounts of public figures during moments of civil unrest. (Axios)
  • Twitter Inc. introduced a new program, in partnership with ad tech companies DoubleVerify and Integral Ad Science, that allows brands to analyze the content adjacent to any advertising on the platform and can adjust campaigns if offensive or inappropriate language is detected. In a statement, Twitter head of brand safety A.J. Brown said validating the context in which ads are served is “incredibly important” to the platform, which continues to grapple with declining ad revenue. (TechCrunch)
  • IBM Corp. and SAP AG announced headcount reductions of 3,900 and 2,800 employees, respectively, becoming the latest tech companies to enact cost-cutting measures. The layoffs will impact less than 3% of each company’s global workforce. (CNN)

Chart Review


What Else You Need to Know


Despite a Bullish Market, Data Clean Rooms Face ROI and Privacy Challenges

Trisha Ostwal, Adweek

The technology investment alone can reach $10 million per company, according to the IAB.


Disney Advertising Expands Relationship With Edward Norton-Backed Measurement Firm EDO, Will Use Its Engagement Data For Streaming

Dade Hayes, Deadline

Disney Advertising and measurement firm EDO, whose co-founder and chairman is the actor and director Edward Norton, have expanded their relationship into the streaming realm.


Meta advertisers brush off Trump’s potential return

Sheila Dang and Katie Paul, Reuters

Former U.S. President Donald Trump’s potential return to Meta Platform’s Facebook and Instagram is unlikely to change how advertisers spend money with the world’s second-largest digital ad company, ad agency executives said.


Meta Pays BuzzFeed Millions to Generate Creator Content for Facebook and Instagram

Jessica Toonkel and Alexandra Bruell, The Wall Street Journal

Partnership marks latest iteration of yearslong relationship between digital publisher and social-media giant.


Sinclair’s Sports Channels Prepare Bankruptcy, Putting Team Payments at Risk

Gerry Smith et al., Bloomberg

America’s largest owner of local sports channels is heading toward a complex $8.6 billion debt restructuring in bankruptcy court as it stakes its future on a new direct-to-consumer streaming service.


DirecTV Drops Newsmax as Conservative Lawmakers Protest

Caitlin Huston, The Hollywood Reporter

The pay TV provider had been at odds with the news outlet over carriage terms.


Vice Expands in Saudi Arabia Via Deal With Media Giant MBC

Alex Ritman, The Hollywood Reporter

The youth media brand — which is reportedly restarting its sale process — will create bespoke Arabic content for the government-owned Middle East behemoth.


Penske Media Eldridge Acquires Dick Clark Productions in Major Expansion

Cynthia Littleton, Variety

Deal brings top unscripted content producer into the parent company of Variety, Rolling Stone and other top media brands.

Social Media and Technology

TikTok Expands Direct Messaging

Kaya Yurieff, The Information

TikTok is quietly expanding its use of direct messaging, a feature that’s become a mainstay of rival Instagram. It’s just the latest way TikTok is grafting social network features onto its entertainment feed, as it tries to boost time spent on the app.


Apple beefs up smartphone services in ‘silent war’ against Google

Patrick McGee, Financial Times

iPhone-maker enhances maps, search and online advertising on iOS to challenge rival Android system.


Twitter Sued in Germany Over Vetting of Antisemitic Posts

Aggi Cantrill and Karin Matussek, Bloomberg

Twitter Inc. was hit by a lawsuit in Germany by an anti-hate speech organization and a European group of Jewish students in a bid to force the platform to remove antisemitic content. 


App downloads were stagnant in the fourth quarter, new analysis finds

Sarah Perez, TechCrunch

The global app economy slowed for the first time last year, as consumer spending on apps dropped 2% to $167 billion, according to a recent annual report put out by 


Twitch is going to make pre-roll ads way less annoying

Ash Parrish, The Verge

Twitch is also adding a bunch of features for streamers and sharing what it’s working on for creators in 2023 and beyond.


Microsoft Plans Security Features, Wider Release for Its OpenAI-Powered Coding Tool

Aaron Holmes, The Information

ChatGPT has generated headlines and hype since its release last year, with its humanlike responses to written prompts. But the business impact of the technology behind the chatbot may first emerge in a different arena: software development.


Elon Musk Explores Raising Up to $3 Billion to Help Pay Off Twitter Debt

Berber Jin and Alexander Saeedy, The Wall Street Journal

Billionaire has held talks with investors about selling new Twitter shares.


A&W addresses mascot’s ‘polarizing’ lack of pants in riff on M&M’s uproar

Peter Adams, Marketing Dive

A&W Restaurants in a tweet said it would outfit mascot Rooty the Great Root Bear in a pair of jeans moving forward due to the “polarizing” nature of his lack of pants. 


Avocados From Mexico Brings ChatGPT to Super Bowl Commercial

Asa Hiken, Ad Age

An in-ad QR code will connect viewers to a landing page integrated with the AI tool.


Why Real Brands Love Fake Holidays: Behind Calendar Creations Like National French Fry Day

Jon Springer, Ad Age

How brands are leaning into made-up holidays, including working with a North Dakota man who runs the National Day Calendar.


As activewear sales slow, Athleta turns attention to new categories

Danny Parisi, Glossy

Athleta, the Gap-owned athletic brand, is making a push into yoga this week with the release of its first collection of yoga accessories.


Doritos hints at a Missy Elliott and Jack Harlow ‘love triangle’ in Super Bowl teaser

Audrey Kemp, The Drum 

Doritos is plotting a star-studded Super Bowl LVII ad featuring not only Jack Harlow but also the “Queen of Rap” herself, Missy Elliott, per a new teaser released Wednesday.


First-Time Super Bowl Advertiser Workday Hopes to Make Noise in Big Game Debut

Brian Steinberg, Variety

A rookie Super Bowl advertiser aims to do this year what even a veteran might find challenging: Get people talking about technology they may never have known affects them every day.


How M&M’s is making the most of its spokescandies controversy

Danielle Wiener-Bronner, CNN

Given the outsized attention, some think M&M’s announcement is a PR stunt to hype its upcoming Super Bowl commercial. But experts note not all publicity is good. And M&M’s may just be trying to regain control of a narrative that has spun out of control.


Southwest CEO maps out a recovery after holiday meltdown: ‘We have work to do’

Leslie Josephs, CNBC

Southwest CEO Bob Jordan’s message, after a holiday meltdown derailed the travel plans of millions, is clear: “I can’t say it enough. We messed up.”


Kohl’s Closing In on Naming Permanent C.E.O.

Lauren Hirsch and Jordyn Holman, The New York Times

Tom Kingsbury, the interim chief executive, is in late-stage talks to replace Michelle Gass, who left the retailer to join Levi’s last year.

Work and Management

Bloomberg LP is hiring 1,000 people while other media, finance, and tech companies slash staff

Lucia Moses, Insider

Bloomberg LP is on a hiring tear while other media, finance, and tech companies slash staff amid the softening economy. 


Why Matthew McConaughey and “frequently” attending Salesforce meetings matters

Cassie Werber, Quartz

Activist investors are sharpening swords in readiness for a battle over the company’s future.


YouTube accused of using return-to-office policies to thwart union organizers

Jon Fingas, Engadget

YouTube Music contractors in the Austin area who voted to unionize are accusing their employers of abusing return-to-office policies to stifle labor organizers.


Is The Creative Industry Ready For The Four-Day Work Week?

Aimée McLaughlin, Creative Review

As the evidence in favour of the four-day work week mounts up, we speak to agencies large and small about why they won’t be returning to the norm.


‘Gen Z employees should be treated like customers–and they want the full package’

Sander Van’t Noordende, Fortune

Over the past three years, the global workforce has transformed. The pandemic has completely altered the labor market–and right now, billions of workers are being affected by the highest inflation rates in generations. Job security is declining amid economic uncertainty–but talent shortages show no sign of slowing down.

Morning Consult