FaceBook Rebranding Meta Video Elicits Brutal Criticisms from Marketers
For a guy who has given away more than $45 billion dollars to various charities and political parties, Mark Zuckerberg can’t seem to catch a break.
Looking back over the FaceBook founder’s media trail is difficult and not very pretty. And yet in spite of his failings, he runs a company used by billions of people each and every day. But when it comes to the recent branding or re-branding, there seems to be a disconnect between the CEO and his multitude of FaceBook users.
An article from fastcompany.com says Zuckerberg is the “worst” spokesman for his newly reset operation. After he renamed his FaceBook family with the single word, Meta, the critics started having a field day. Even Iceland turned in a scathing video to parody the renaming.
This isn’t about Zuckerberg’s personality, which is obviously subjective. At a time when Facebook has recast its path forward—a move inescapably tied to eluding the laundry list of controversies dogging the Facebook name—sticking with its founder as the primary face (and voice) of the new company means that everyone still sees Facebook, never mind that the word Meta is peeking over his shoulder.
What’s the old saying, “the more things change the more they stay the same?”
The article gives us some other people’s views of Meta:
“You’re changing the name, not the perception if he’s still at the head of it,” says Vann Graves, executive director of VCU’s Brandcenter. “Mark Zuckerberg is his own brand, and it’s inextricably linked to Facebook. That links him to Cambridge Analytica, the 2020 election, the recent WSJ reports. So if you add this new layer of Meta, that’s great, but it only fixes the Facebook part of it and doesn’t address the Zuckerberg brand part. This was a huge opportunity that may have been missed on reframing that for Facebook, now Meta.”
One of the main complaints about Zuckerberg was his lack of oversight on FaceBook when it came to violence, especially from political figures. And in the announcement video for Meta, Zuckerberg didn’t quite reach the audience in the same way that Steve Jobs or Elon Musk has.
“He’s a young CEO who created something amazing, and for some people, that’s enough,” says Graves. “But with the changing attitudes of consumers, the concerns from parents about their kids, there’s now an expectation of responsibility. And that’s why I think they missed an opportunity.”
Zuckerberg and his company see the future of technology shaping our lives. It’s all delivered via the kind of completely natural conversations that humans have with one another and peppered with Easter eggs to Zuckerberg’s most meme-worthy, Sweet Baby Ray’s moments.
The Sweet Baby Ray’s comment is an inside joke that is revealed in the article. Something we can be thankful for this Thanksgiving is that we don’t have Zuckerberg’s reputation—and we can laugh at the Icelandverse video.
read more at fastcompany.com