Facebook has announced major updates to ad formats and monetization on Facebook Watch, a signal that the social media giant is stepping up competition against major video platforms like YouTube.
The latest update consists of 4 improvements that help Facebook Watch video monetization:
- Expanded Placements for Pre-Roll video
- Preview Trailers
- Ad Breaks Auto Insertion
- Pre-Publish Brand Safety Check
Let’s take a quick look at what this update is, and what it means in the greater context of video-sharing platforms and advertisers.
Growing Monetization For Facebook Watch Creators And Publishers
Facebook has stated that it is focused on maximizing the payouts to content creators and publishers that create valuable content.
“We are focused on growing payouts for creators and publishers who develop engaged and loyal audiences and are working on growing payouts for partners who develop loyal, engaged viewing” says Nick Grudin, VP of Media Partnerships at Facebook.
“Growing payouts,” in addition to new ad placements and improved optimization, may help alleviate marketer concerns regarding the channel.
“With the recent updates to the algorithm, Facebook advertisers have been concerned over cost increases. With people spending less time on the platform this means less potential inventory. Now that there will be additional placements available to video ads, we’ll likely continue to see short form video ads on the rise.”
– Jenny Broekemeier, Social Marketing Manager, CPC Strategy
The monetization update includes improving the eligibility for ad placements (called Ad Break Eligibility) for number of video formats.
- Facebook is expanding the placements of Pre-Roll to other areas of the platform where users search for video, including search results and Facebook Page timelines.
- Facebook is testing a new ad video format, Preview Trailers, aimed at helping people discover videos in their News Feed. This means an ad will play when a user taps the video before playing the rest of the episode.
In addition to expanding monetization, Facebook Watch is also updating their general monetization features.
- Ad breaks auto insertion: Facebook Watch will now automatically detect the optimal within a video to serve the ad, potentially increasing publisher payouts
- Pre-publish brand safety check: content partners can now submit a video before publishing to verify its eligibility for ad breaks
Facebook also outlined new policies that remove incentives from content “that create less value for people.” This includes:
- Manufactured sharing and distribution schemes
- Formats unsuitable for ads
- Limited editorialization for content
Facebook Watch Wants “Valuable” Content, More Viewers
Facebook Watch launched late last year, in what many deem a late start in market already crowded with big players such as YouTube, Netflix, Hulu, and others.
The video service features user-created videos, shows, live sports, and other categories.
The resources and potential of the world’s largest social media company shouldn’t be underestimated.
Facebook has over 2 billion users and an effective infrastructure for connecting people to engaging content. Potential challenges in differentiating the young video platform from well-established competitors will remain.
“It will take a while for people to adopt Facebook as their ‘go to’ video platform. Especially if publishers utilize the exact same content across all other social networks. People also tend to be on multiple screens while watching long form video content, so we’ll likely see low completion rates from this content.”
However, if the social media giant can develop a platform that seamlessly connects their userbase to their favorite shows and broadcasts, then advertisers (and YouTube/Netflix/Hulu) may want to start paying attention.
Interested in learning how you can leverage Facebook to your brand’s advantage?