Since Facebook introduced auto-play videos in the desktop News Feed in December, we’ve been dreading the day when the network would launch auto-play video ads. I’m sorry to say, Facebook users, that that day has finally arrived.
Facebook announced a new premium video ads program on its blog today. The 15-second video ads will auto-play without sound. Similar to when users interact with Facebook videos shared by friends, when users scroll past an ad, the video ad will stop playing, but when users tap on a video ad, it will expand to full-screen mode accompanied by sound.
Creating High-Quality Ads
In a probably futile attempt to not piss off its users, Facebook is partnering with television and video analytics company Ace Metrix to ensure the “creative quality” of video ads matches the quality of other content users see in their News Feeds. “We’re taking this step in order to maintain high-quality ads on Facebook and help advertisers understand what’s working to maximize their return on investment,” wrote Susan Buckner, product marketing manager at Facebook. Initially Facebook will stick to working with a select group of advertisers it feels has the capacity to run high-quality campaigns (which sounds like Instagram’s advertising strategy), and will roll out video ads slowly in order to monitor the way Facebook users interact with them.
For anyone interested in purchasing Facebook’s video ads in the future, you should know they are bought and measured in a manner similar to TV ads. Advertisers will buy spots based on “Targeted Gross Rating Points” to reach a specific audience over a short period of time. Nielsen Online Campaign Ratings will measure ad delivery, and advertisers will only pay for what Nielsen measures.
You can check out a demo video of the new Facebook video ads here, and expect to start seeing video ads in your News Feed in the next few months.
What do you think of auto-play video ads in your News Feed?
Featured image by Maria Elena