Meta, which is now a rebrand of Facebook, recently reported that its main social media platform, Facebook, experienced a decline in its user base for the first time in its history As a result, Meta saw a massive drop in its stock market value which reached nearly 20%, and a $200 billion decrease in market value, citing competition from rivals like TikTok and Apple’s privacy policies. Facebook has lost more than a million daily users in North America where the company makes the most money from advertising. Facebook’s daily active users fell from 1.93 billion in the fourth quarter of 2020 to 1.92 billion in the last quarter.
The decline further lowered Facebook’s daily user count in the global market, which a company spokesperson confirmed was the first sequential decline in the company’s history. Meta’s other social platforms, such as Instagram and WhatsApp, also saw weak user growth, adding only 10 million users between Q3 and Q4 2021.
Meta’s Facebook has arguably been a market leader in the social media industry and user engagement has only grown since its inception in 2004. However, over the years Facebook has been involved in many controversies, whether it’s the Cambridge Analytica scandal or user privacy issues.
In fact, Facebook was recently voted the worst company by a Yahoo Finance survey last year. This goes to show that rebranding a company is not enough to solve its fundamental problems.
Meta remains a profitable business
It is worth mentioning that Meta has been a profitable business, as it made around $40 billion in profit in 2021 alone, mostly from advertising. However, the company lost $10.2 billion last year for its Metaverse initiatives and Reality Labs projects. It remains to be seen how the Metaverse will help Facebook rekindle lost goodwill.
Going forward, if Meta fails to fix Facebook’s fundamental problems, the social platform is likely to see its market value drop and lose more users in the global market. The company forecasts first-quarter revenue of between $27 billion and $29 billion, which is a low expectation. So what do you think of Facebook’s declining user base and advertising growth?