Video is king and Facebook is pushing hard on this form of content. Following updates this week geared towards showing users more videos, the social network has announced their first steps towards enabling video partners to earn advertising revenue from the four billion plus videos they serve to users every day – a move which also signals its next advance on YouTube, in the battle for online video dominance.
For some time now, Facebook has given users a list of suggested videos related to content watched – once you view a video on the platform, a list of similar clips will come up related to that previous item.
Facebook is now testing a feature whereby once you select one of these suggested video posts, an in-line, autoplay ad will appear between clips. It’s similar to how YouTube displays in-line ads, however Facebook is making it clear that they’re avoiding any autoplay ads – Facebook’s VP of Partnerships Dan Rose said that autoplay ads wouldn’t work for how Facebook displays videos, which automatically start playing in the News Feed (people would be less likely to click through if all the autoplay showed was an advert).
Facebook have announced that they will retain 45% of any revenue generated, with brands taking 55% – the same standard charge as YouTube currently offers.
Facebook is hoping that the ability for marketers to monetise their video content will lead to more of them creating video content for Facebook.
Whilst the revenue share, at this stage, is very similar to YouTube, Facebook is looking at how to charge for their video ad content in ways that will best benefit advertisers, which will also be aimed at getting them away from the Google-owned video giant.
Will Facebook users care about being served video ads? Probably not – in this regard, they’re almost using YouTube’s established tactics against them, as people are used to being served in-line ads between content by now.
Facebook’s currently testing the new video ads with a select group of iOS users, with a view to refinement and extension of the program in coming months.
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