Facebook Test Pre-Roll Ads

Zuckerberg has recently released that Facebook plans to begin testing pre-roll video ads. These will feature at the beginning of the Watch shows.

After many years or refusing to use pre-roll video ads, Facebook seem to have warmed to the idea of it, introducing them to their Watch shows. This feature is an attempt to make money through ad sales and placements.

What are the aims of Pre-Roll Adverts?

Facebook’s mid-roll video ads only have a 70% completion rate. Following in You Tube’s footsteps, the pre-roll videos that will show before the Watch shows will be short adverts with the hope of gaining customer engagement.

Facebook hope that these ads will provide needed advertising space on the social media platform. With News Feed adverts highly competitive and space limited, the Pre-Roll advert feature is released with the intention with increasing revenue for advertisers whilst boosting impressions.

The Facebook ‘Watch’ feature was launched in August 2017, where original shows could be watched on the social media platform. Although the shows’ views are not breaking any records, Zuckerberg believes he will form a loyal audience with the feature. AdAge writes “Watch was designed to draw audiences of loyal, returning viewers in a setting more like TV.”

Facebook watch

The new Pre-Roll videos will ensure audiences see the advert at the start, rather than relying on them making it to a middle commercial break, which was the original format of ads in Watch. These ads caused low engagement numbers and weren’t overly successful for advertisers.

How will advertisers use this feature?

Advertisers will be able to show their ads before Watch shows from publishers such as Refinery29, Group Nine and Business Insider. These publishers focus on returning viewers with a loyalty to the shows, with the hope that they will have the patience to sit through the pre-roll ad.

Advertisers can promote their services, products and businesses with these pre-roll placements.

Facebook has also said that the Watch feature is moving towards rolling out longer shows to compete with YouTube and Netflix.

The new pre-roll feature is due to be released to a select number of advertiser within the next few weeks. But will these new ads scrape in the revenue that Facebook predict?

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