Facebook launched a range of new video ad programs at a media event in New York on Tuesday, as it looks to deliver a “more diverse set of content” for the hundreds of millions of users who watch clips on the platform.
The premium “Showcase” program will make it easier for advertisers to engage with target audiences, while the “Sponsorships” initiative will enable advertisers to sponsor videos exclusively and place their ads against visual content with similar themes. The new options are now live for campaigns targeted at US audiences.
Facebook says that its “In-Stream Reserve” advertising venture, which arrived for the first time last year, has been hugely successful, with the ads now being viewed by almost 100 million people in the US every month. The company’s Head of Agency Sales Erik Geisler said that the numbers are “TV-like” in scale and are particularly popular with 18 to 34-year-olds.
Showcase will be an update of that core framework and will combine video ads with the ability to push ads within a set category, such as fashion and beauty or sports. The latest changes are part of Facebook’s aim to support “three main pillars” for video – interactivity, community and “co-watching”.
“When we [launched] Facebook Watch over 18 months ago to build a destination for people to come together with friends and family to catch up on video … we started … just in the U.S., [and] made it a closed platform,” Facebook’s Content Strategy Head Matthew Henick added. “The main feedback we heard [was] that they wanted a broader and more diverse set of content.”