Facebook is gearing up to launch a new video ad product for advertisers, Jason Del Rey reports at AdAge.Like most ads, they’ll appear in our News Feeds, the stream of updates from friends and pages that appears on Facebook when you log in.
According to advertising-industry executives, Facebook will launch its new ad product by April at the latest. The ads will appear on both the desktop and mobile versions of Facebook.
The ads will start playing automatically, but Facebook hasn’t yet decided if the audio component will play automatically as well.
Today, Facebook allows videos in ads. But users have to click the video in order for it to play, and in most circumstances, a user or a user’s friend would have to have liked the advertiser’s page or commented on a video to see the video in their News Feed. Those limitations are what will go away with the new product
Del Rey’s sources tell him that Facebook’s latest ad product is part of the company’s efforts to bring in additional revenue from advertisers who have traditionally bought television spots. Facebook will likely cap the length of the videos at 15 seconds, which is an increasingly common length for TV ads—meaning agencies might be able to share creative between TV and Facebook campaigns.
But many of the executives Del Rey interviewed expressed concern over Facebook’s latest ad product, mostly because of the autoplay component.
Videos which play automatically, particularly with audio, are seen as disruptive, especially for users at work or in public settings. Video ads on mobile devices might also disrupt other activities, like listening to music or taking phone calls.
One executive said, “There could be serious outrage.”
We reached out to Facebook but the company declined to comment.