Facebook has confirmed an earlier report that they will indeed be bringing auto-playback video advertizing to users' News Feeds this week. The changes to moving image advertizing were trialled last week but will become widespread this week, according to a press release from the social networking giant. Facebook rather politely call the ads a ''richer storytelling format for advertisers,'' comparing them to videos shared by your friends. This rich storytelling will appear on both the web-based and mobile app versions of the site. We already saw them a month ago on Facebook's sister company Instagram.
The ads will pre-load over Wi-Fi and playback automatically whether you are connected to a Wi-Fi network at the time or not, but without audio playback unless the user taps on them. Facebook are being very hush hush about their plans for the new move, stating it is a initial, limited test and that everything to follow will be based on what they learn from the experience. At a cost of two million dollars per day for advertisers to use the new premium feature, according to The Wall Street Journal, what Facebook learns about user's reactions will certainly have to be filtered through the vast piles of cash that will come pouring in. Emphasis on the rich, less so on the storytelling.
The first ad you will see will be a film trailer for the movie Divergent, with video content to follow from individuals with large advertizing balances (personal Facebook accounts and verified Facebook Pages), as well as organizational advertizing for sports and entertainment. As yet there's no clear information on how long the ads can be or how many you will see. While the knee-jerk reaction might be to cringe, if Facebook's immense user demographic data stockpiles are utilized in future, targeted video ads could just be a nice new feature, but for now it's just going to be blatant advertizing.
If you simply can't wait to see how the ads will look, check out Facebook's Business Advertizing page to see an ad of the ads in action.
What do you think about auto-play video ads in Facebook? A nice addition to the site or in-your-face commercialism?