Facebook now offers advertisers video content

14 Mar 2014

Facebook will now display video advertisements from selected companies on users’ newsfeeds after overcoming delays and technical issues with the service.

The move will provide interesting analysis in the coming months and years as to whether it will have a negative impact on traditional TV advertising, as marketing budgets may move to video content online, where advertising is expected to have a bigger impact.

The videos will come in 15-second spots that will display on users’ newsfeeds and will target specific demographics by age, gender and interests.

Because the social media site has a userbase of more than 1bn people, the advertising rates will essentially be limited to the largest of companies, as the speculated cost to the advertiser will be between US$1-US$2.5m per day, according to Bloomberg.

From today, Facebook will begin offering the service to companies and the site’s users should see the first video ads appearing sometime in April or May this year.

Similarly to Google’s Adwords, advertisers will be able to target users at specific times in the day to suit their product, ie, Starbucks showing their coffee drinks early on Monday morning.

The major issue for users will be whether the videos will become an irritating bombardment every few minutes, something which could put them off using Facebook, but Tim Rathschmidt, a spokesperson for Facebook has confirmed the videos will only appear on a person’s feed at most three times a day.

Colm Gorey was a senior journalist with Silicon Republic