Truth Social, like other social media platforms, depends on advertising to generate revenue, but as Twitter’s well-documented struggle to keep advertisers has demonstrated, it’s challenging to draw significant brands when a company’s content moderation powers seem unreliable. This is perhaps the reason Truth Social, which prides itself on sparking an “open, free, and honest global conversation” by basically forgoing content control altogether, hasn’t attracted any significant sponsors.
Truth Social’s technique for making ends meet is taking ads from just about anyone, according to a New York Times review of hundreds of its advertisements. According to a November SFGate investigation, Truth Social’s user base also appears to be diminishing, in addition to the app’s reportedly faltering ad revenue. The Righting, a nonprofit that tracks conservative media, reports that the number of unique visits to Truth Social peaked in August last year at 4 million before falling to 2.8 million by October.
Truth Social might find itself in severe financial trouble if it fails to draw in advertising dollars, loses a significant amount of traffic, and sees Trump return to major platforms (he recently reclaimed access to Twitter and Facebook). Former executive of Truth Social’s parent business, Trump Media & Technology Group, William Wilkinson, told the Times that the social platform, supported by a $37 million contribution, “burns through around $1.7 million each month.”
The traffic on Truth Social Media was highest in August
When Truth Social’s traffic was at its highest in August, the platform bragged about its innovative advertising approach to entice additional sponsors with its “rapidly growing, highly engaged audience.” Truth Social CEO Devin Nunes anticipated that Truth Social would “displace” Big Tech platforms as a preferred advertising environment while working with Rumble Ads, which claimed in the same news release that it had established an “ecosystem” for advertisers wanting to combat “cancel culture.”
This prediction was incorrect. After using a programme for several months to gather and analyse Truth Social ads, New York Times reporter Stuart A. Thompson concluded that “ads from major brands are nonexistent on the site” due to Truth Social’s declining financial situation. Advertising professionals claimed to the Times that large brands avoid Truth Social because users post conspiracy theories and politicised comments. But businesses are also avoiding Truth Social since there aren’t as many consumers to target as on Facebook or Twitter, which both have billions of subscribers. Most importantly, Truth Social needed to draw in more young users for marketers to direct their advertising budgets there.
Major brands’ first goal will always be ensuring their reputations’ protection, and most of them consider advertising on Truth Social to be dangerous.
The Times cited an online marketer named Maxwell Finn’s YouTube video, who claimed to be one of Truth Social’s biggest advertisers. Finn claimed in the film that he has invested in more right-wing-focused platforms and spent more than $150,000 on Truth Social. He acknowledged that he was annoyed by the necessity of monitoring his ad performance on Truth Social, as doing so would have prevented him from knowing whether they were driving any sales.