On August 5th Gab announced they were starting a beta to test advertising on Gab’s social media platform. This is big news for all conservative marketers. Firstly, Gab has a large conservative userbase. And secondly, because Gab’s founder Andrew Torba is a conservative Christian, Gab will allow businesses that wouldn’t normally be able to advertise the opportunity to advertise: i.e., Firearms.
This is a unique opportunity for any conservative company to market to a largely conservative and Christian audience.
Full disclosure, I am in the Gab advertising beta. I saw it as a great opportunity for several of my clients. So know that I’m practicing what I preach, and this gives me some additional insight into what’s going on.
What is Gab
Gab is a controversial social media platform. One look at their Wikipedia page, and you’ll understand. It has had every name in the book thrown at it: racist, homophobe, white nationalist, etc. And to be frank, many of its users would fall into these categories, especially during the early years of Gab. Those users were the first people removed from the mainstream social media platforms, and Gab was the only place to go. However, at its core, Gab is a company that values free speech above all else.
Things changed throughout the Trump presidency as more and more conservatives got kicked off the mainstream social media platforms. These conservatives also made their way over to Gab. As a result, Gab now has a large community of canceled conservatives and conservatives that have left/boycotted the mainstream platforms. For some context, there are thriving Roman Catholic, Eastern Orthodox, Firearm, and even Beekeeping communities on Gab. So while Gab may have started as a community for people with controversial opinions, it is safe to say Gab has now grown and become rather large, if not the largest alt-social media platform.
The Gab Audience
We don’t know too many details about the Gab userbase. What we do know is that it is largely conservative and Christian. We also know that in the aftermath of January 6th, the userbase of Gab rose dramatically. In a July 14th social media post, Gab announced it had gotten an additional 2.3 million new users. How active these accounts and users are is hard to tell. But from Gab’s official announcement, we know:
-100 million+ page views a month
-15 million+ unique visitors a month
-80% of traffic is based in the United States
-Estimated core demographic age range: 20-60
-The typical Gab user is a Conservative Christian with a family and interests in hunting, fishing, cars, camping, news, politics, rural living, homeschooling, privacy, free speech, cryptocurrency, guns, and cooking among others.
While those numbers look impressive, it wouldn’t be too hard for a very dedicated fanbase of 50-100k to reach those numbers. That is not to say this isn’t a great opportunity, but the number we all want to know is active users, and that number is unfortunately missing.
Gab User Loyalty
The part about advertising on Gab that I’m most excited about is the state of these users. These people have been kicked off of social media platforms or have decided they no longer want to support mainstream platforms. However, they are an active and opinionated fan base. These people like and support what Gab stands for. Gab has gained their loyalty for taking a stand on free speech issues.
Any brand that advertises on Gab is likely to gain loyalty and support. Advertising on Gab is an excellent way to signal your commitment to the first amendment and endear yourself to an audience looking for companies to support. You could easily gain several thousand loyal new users from this opportunity.
Who Should Be Advertising on Gab
The opportunity to advertise on Gab is exciting for various reasons, but the industry likely to profit the most from this is the firearm industry.
You can’t advertise firearms on Facebook or Twitter. However, one of my clients is in the firearms industry, and I spoke to Andrew Torba about advertising them on Gab, and he said:
Our lawyers say no problem as long as the business is legit/operating legally which I’m sure it is.
Good news if you sell guns legally. If you’re a marketer in the firearms industry, I would highly recommend looking into advertising on Gab. Digital advertising, in general, is tricky for the firearms industry. Most places have a waitlist to run the most basic of display ads. So the chance to advertising on a social media platform should not be missed.
Gab Ad Specifications
Because advertising on Gab is still only in the beta testing phase, its ad sizes and types are understandably limited.
Right now, Gab is offering two ad placements: The side column on desktop and an in-feed option. The ads take a square image, and there is a title and description area to add copy.
Copy on Desktop side columnTitle: 45 character limitDescription: 90 character limitCopy on in-feed adsTitle: 90 character limitDescription: 200 character limit
Wrapping up Advertising on Gab
I’m very bullish about advertising on Gab.
I think it presents a unique opportunity to advertise to a group of people looking for alternatives to mainstream companies. These are people actively looking to switch brands and support businesses that align with their values. It’s not often in marketing when you get a chance to advertise to such a willing audience.
There is plenty of risk advertising on Gab. You’re bound to take a hit to your reputation, and it’s unknown how effective ads will be on Gab. Through their dubious data practices, Facebook has probably spoiled most marketers with higher than average engagement and click-through rates.
But for those businesses brave enough to take on those risks, this is a once in a decade chance to endear yourself to a large and growing audience.