Testing Mid-Roll Video Ads
Facebook has announced that it is testing mid-roll video ads. These ads will be placed 20 seconds in from the start of a video, and they will only apply to videos that are a minimum of 90 seconds long. Facebook will give publishers a portion of the ad revenue generated by these mid-roll video ads. They will take 55%, and the rest will go to the publishers. Publishers should be happy now that they can benefit from uploading their videos to Facebook. But how smart is this move by Facebook?
Win-Win for Facebook & Publishers?
Keep in mind, for the 3rd quarter of 2016, Facebook posted $7 Billion dollars in revenue. So why would Facebook need to explore integrating ads into videos much like YouTube already does? Well, even with the success that Facebook currently has displaying ads, the social media website is running out of space in the newsfeed to show them to users. As video continues to grow in popularity on social media, Facebook sees an opportunity again to add to their revenue. By sharing ad revenue with publishers, Facebook hopes to attract higher quality video uploads. This should ultimately attract user engagement and open up more territory for displaying ads.
Sound familiar? Well, this strategy closely mirrors how YouTube built their way to the top of the video world. Users are incentivized while YouTube generates revenue. As users seek to generate their own revenue, they make efforts to provide better quality content. Facebook is also testing ads on Instagram’s Story feature, but there are no details yet on whether or not there will be a revenue sharing model there for publishers as well.
How Will Users React?
The big question is, how well will these efforts work for Facebook? Will users embrace mid-roll video advertisements, or will it further distance users who already feel the social media site is overly saturated with advertisements? It will also be interesting to see how this affects brands and their ability to do effective social media marketing on Facebook. Will brands be able to get the engagement with advertisements they are looking for, or will users ignore them with ad blockers and skipping ads (if possible on Facebook)? Only time will tell. It seems like Facebook continues to make decisions that could make or break the social media website.
We’d love to hear from you. How do you feel about the possible addition of ads on Facebook videos? Drop a line below and share some thoughts.