Video ads come to Facebook

15-second ads will play automatically in users' feeds.

An assortment of video ads will soon start appearing in Facebook users' feeds as the company grasps at a larger slice of the lucrative TV advertising market.

The ads will be 15 seconds long, similar to the length of some television commercials, and will begin appearing in the next few months. The ads will play without sound as users scroll past them, but will expand into a full-screen view with sound if they are clicked on. The ads will run on desktops and mobile devices.

Facebook will work with a select group of U.S. advertisers on the program, which it calls "premium video ads." The ramp up follows some earlier tests of the ads that began late last year.

Facebook will roll out the ads slowly as it monitors how users interact with them, the company said. The social media company is working with Ace Metrix, a TV advertising analytics company, to assess each ad before it appears on Facebook's site.

"We're taking this step in order to maintain high-quality ads on Facebook and help advertisers understand what's working to maximize their return on investment," Facebook said in its announcement.

With more than 1.2 billion monthly active users, Facebook hopes to give marketers a way to reach a massive number of people on its site. Facebook will provide targeting capabilities, so that advertisers can target specific groups, for instance, by gender or age.

The ads, Facebook said, are bought and measured in a way that's similar to how advertisers already buy and measure ads on TV. They will be designed, Facebook said, to reach a specific audience over a short period of time and their impact will be measured by Nielsen.

The rollout comes as revenue from digital advertising trails behind TV advertising. But the gap could shrink over time. In a recent report, Nielsen said integration between online and TV video ad markets is real and accelerating.

Facebook didn't say how much its video ads would cost advertisers in total, though a report in Bloomberg cited a range of US$1 million to $2.5 million a day.

Zach Miners covers social networking, search and general technology news for IDG News Service. Follow Zach on Twitter at @zachminers. Zach's e-mail address is

Join the CMO newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.
Show Comments

Supporting Association

Blog Posts

What happens when the 'market' becomes a 'customer'?

One of the insightful things that has been said to me recently came from an independent consultant working at a major FMCG client. He said: “The problem here is that we have some people who are world-class at marketing to the masses, but they haven’t got a clue about how to speak to a customer.”

3 Metrics to measure B2B content marketing ROI

Content marketing has become a key pillar for marketing departments of all sizes across the world. But how do you measure – and ultimately prove – the effectiveness of the time, money and energy spent on content marketing?

How global brands can connect on a local level

The dot-com boom allowed brands to easily access the global market. Thanks to this increased exposure and worldwide awareness, brands can no longer exist in a local bubble.

Dan Ratner

managing director, Uberbrand

Customer Identity Management is becoming critical for enterprise companies looking to create meaningful interactions with their customers...

Michael Mitrakos

Customer identity management as a revenue driver for CMOs

Read more

Informative comments , I loved the info , Does anyone know if my assistant could get ahold of a blank 2011 IRS 8804 - Schedule A document...


Telstra unveils fresh digital content media services

Read more

So, the one thing I would say is .. the customer already has a voice, whether you wanted them to have one or not .. and they have a platf...

Paul Gilbert

Why digital strategy equals customer experience

Read more

Appliances online are doing a good job online, but they're still not giving customers a truly powerful online experience in my view. Wher...

Graham Howlett

Navigating the future of omni-channel retailing

Read more

For both businesses and marketers alike who want a digital marketing platform that supports data visualization, integrated analytics and ...


Adobe to bolster analytics capabilities of Marketing Cloud with Digital Analytix acquisition

Read more

Latest Podcast

More podcasts

Sign in