Coming Soon To Facebook: Video Ads

Facebook users may find video ads in their newsfeed as soon as July, the Financial Times reports. The social media firm hopes to grab some of the advertising revenue from TV, and open a new revenue stream to appease shareholders.

Sheryl Sandberg has already gone on record as saying mobile advertising is at least as important as TV.

Brands on Facebook's client council, which include Coca-Cola, Ford, Unilever and Diageo are expected to take part in trials, but the worry is that users may find the experience so disruptive that they stop visiting the site and move to other social networks. According to one report last week, Facebook's user numbers are already in decline, despite the firm's numerous attempts to keep its users engaged, on mobile and elsewhere.

Of course, it's no secret why Facebook is keen on videos: they drive online product sales. According to Joyus founder and ex-Googler Sukhinder Singh Cassidy, people are five times as likely to buy something from a video ad than from a picture on an e-commerce site, and buy five times as often.

The Facebook videos will run silently until the user chooses to activate the sound, which will relaunch the ad from the beginning. How long before Facebook offers an ad-free newsfeed to users—at a price?

Facebook users, how do you feel about seeing video ads in your newsfeed? Did you see this coming? Will brands find video ads work for them, or does more noise for users mean their message will fade into the background?

[Image by Flickr user theanthonyryan]

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  • Chris Lau

    Have transitioned over to Google+. Am liking connecting to people by interest, and having direct contact with google executives and gadget news reporters on the site.

  • Sms10a

    I would stop using Facebook.  I'm just tired of constantly being barraged by advertisers.  It's annoying enough to have commercial posts in my feed, ads on the sides of the screen, and recommended posts.  It's just not worth it.

  • Neilson Spencer

    I think this could be huge for Facebook. The brands on Facebook's client council are no slouches when it comes to advertising, and they have a chance to really make online video advertising a clear choice for future campaigns.

    They just have to make their advertisements and video slots creative and interesting. Which can be summed up in the phrase, "Make cool shit."

    People are constantly sharing. And they will share a brands advertising if they find it to be funny, thought provoking, or entertaining + informative. This isn't about trying to make a "viral campaign," that's a stupid way to go about things.  Tell a story. Create something you would be interested in watching and sharing. Or hire a creative agency to something you'd like to watch.

    If Facebook can create quality control over the advertisements featured in their video ads, this model could really take off.

  • Carlo Borja

    As much as I hate Facebook ads, I can't do anything about it. It is a free service.

    It is not as disruptive as the others are doing it anyway (hello YouTube). At least for now that is how it is. I don't think I would ever pay to remove those ads too.