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Gaining Reach via Facebook In-Stream Video Ads

Facebook has only started testing in-stream video ads, with some advertisers running video ads across the Audience Network. By the end of 2017, Facebook plans to provide this new ad format to all advertisers running video ads. With more places to deliver content, advertisers can gain more reach and brand exposure.

3 min read

Gaining reach via Facebook in-stream video ads

Facebook has been testing in-stream video ads since May last year. Now, the social network is making in-stream video ads available to all Audience Network publishers that meet their guidelines as well as to a limited number of advertisers. Since video content and thus video ads are gaining more popularity, Facebook recently announced that it is improving its in-stream video ads by giving advertisers more control over where their in-stream video ads appear.

What exactly are in-stream video ads?

Good to know that Facebook has been testing and making in-stream video ads available to a certain number of advertisers, but what exactly are in-stream video ads? Basically, in-stream video ads are commercials that appear in publisher’s videos. They can last 5 to15 seconds and can be placed after at least 20 seconds of a publisher’s video. Facebook shows the most relevant ads to each viewer - if the advertiser’s targeted audience spends more time in a particular app than on Facebook or Instagram, the video ad will be shown in that app more often. If you’re wondering what type of third-party placements advertisers can expect, publishers such as USA Today, Sports Media Group, Hearst, Tastemade, Business Insider and Daily Mail have already been using this new ad format to deliver engaging video ad experiences to their audiences.

Facebook in-stream video ads

What’s the difference to YouTube video ads?

Compared to YouTube video ads, Facebook in-stream video ads are placed between native videos, forcing a 100% video view if the user intends to finish watching the entire video of let’s say a puppy playing with a kitten. Another difference to YouTube ads is the fact that Facebook in-stream video targeting is audience-based, which means that viewers of the same video will see different ads depending on their interests. Essentially, this means that viewers of in-stream video ads will be based on interest targeting that the advertiser chooses.

What Facebook objectives can advertisers use?

At the moment, in-stream video ads are only available for campaigns using video views, brand awareness, reach or post engagement as objective. However, Facebook is planning to expand to additional objectives in the near future.

Why should advertisers care?

Even though this type of ad is relatively new, Facebook has already seen some positive results for advertisers. With more places to deliver content, advertisers can increase the value of their brand by getting more brand exposure through video and thus is great for brand awareness.

According to Facebook:

  • Over 70% of in-stream impressions are watched until the end, the majority of them with sound on
  • Advertisers can generate approximately 10% more reach than using mobile News Feed alone
  • Advertisers can gain lower cost per view by enabling all their videos to show on Facebook, Instagram and the Audience Network
  • Advertisers can extend the reach of their Facebook video view campaigns as third-party apps and sites have a wide reach

What’s next?

Facebook is planning to provide advertisers with a list of publishers on whose sites, apps, and native Facebook videos their ads may appear. This means that advertisers will be able to block a certain number of publishers that don’t align with their brand mission. However, Facebook has only started testing these in-stream video ads, with some advertisers running video ads across the Audience Network. By the end of 2017, Facebook plans to provide this new ad format to all advertisers running video ads.

Now that you got a general idea of in-stream video ads and their benefits, what are your thoughts on this new ad format? Do you think in-stream video ads might be intrusive to the user experience when watching videos? Have you seen any in-stream video ads yet yourself? Share your experiences with our community and stay tuned for more industry developments. If you need more general info on in-stream video ads, check out the Advertiser Help Center.

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