With a whopping 1.25 billion people viewing its diverse, growing library of content every month, Facebook Watch has rapidly evolved into a leading, dedicated video destination.
This growth has been fueled by a massive global demand for instant, personalized video content that is available to watch across a range of different devices. Of course, mobile-viewing plays a massive role here, with many turning to their mobile devices as their primary method of consuming video content.
These trends have ushered in a video advertising landscape that is a far cry from the times when television occupied the only seat at the table. Audiences are now fragmented. Many are unreachable by the traditional TVC, which has resulted in ad budgets being redistributed in order to achieve brand marketing objectives in the most efficient manner possible.
With Watch staking its claim as one of the key video platforms in this new landscape, Facebook’s In-Stream video ad solutions have become a key communication channel, enabling brands to achieve these top-of-funnel KPIs.
Facebook In-Stream video ads are embedded within approved publisher and creator video content. They can appear during the pre-roll, mid-roll, or post-roll—however, the majority of ad inventory is currently allocated for mid-roll ads.
Durations for In-Stream ads are highly flexible. 15-seconds is recommended as an optimal target, especially for the non-skippable ads that represent most of inventory. Skippables ads are available in a limited capacity, and can be used for longer-form video with durations up to 10-minutes.
In-Stream ads are served to audiences at three key locations where video content is consumed on Facebook. Again, the ads can appear before, during, and after video content uploaded by approved publishers.
Now that you have an overview of the In-Stream format, let’s explore the benefits that make this placement a go-to for achieving strong brand outcomes on digital.
A major concern for some advertisers when conducting brand marketing via online channels is ensuring the suitability of the environment in which ads will be placed. Brand image can become tainted if your ads end up being placed next to, or within content that is not consistent with your brand’s values and identity.
In order to give advertisers peace of mind, Facebook has created a set of Brand Safety Controls for In-Stream advertising. These advertiser functions help to give brands the ability to control the type of content that their ads run within through the use of block lists, topic exclusions, and transparent delivery reports.
All publisher content also must pass strict community standards, and additionally, any publisher wishing to monetize their video content by running In-Stream ads also has to also comply with Facebook’s partner monetization policy.
A key part of what makes In-Stream a powerful brand building method is the ability to personalize your ads towards the viewer. Rather than running a generic TVC that covers all bases, In-Stream calls for creative that reflects your custom audience’s demographics and interests. This in turn helps you to drive higher engagement due to the ads having a higher level of relevance.
If you have a number of defined audience segments, you can utilize different ad concepts that speak to their specific needs and interests. Alternatively, if you are dialing in on one persona for your campaign, you can optimize your creative through a test, learn, adapt approach which can help you to determine, and subsequently focus upon the creative treatments that resonate best with your audience.
Due to the fact that most of the In-Stream inventory is non-skippable, and embedded “mid-roll” within content that is relevant to your product or service, you are able to garner a high amount of completed views—most of which occur with sound-enabled. This gives you an opportunity to spend more time with your audience and deliver a richer brand message.
This ability to garner stronger impressions makes In-Stream a powerful tool for achieving brand-focused objectives, and sets it apart from other placements where view-time tends to experience a sharp drop-off.
If you’re running full-funnel campaigns across Facebook’s family of apps or across digital in general, In-Stream is a perfect addition that will help you to bolster your brand building efforts and achieve your top-of-funnel objectives by reaching a vast, tuned-in audience. By pairing In-Stream with Facebook’s other ad placements, you are able to optimize your funnel, and maximize efficiency.
Alternatively, In-Stream can be used as standalone campaigns on top of existing business as usual Facebook campaigns, focusing on brand storytelling efforts. If you do take this route, it is strongly recommended to develop a number of creative variations for testing purposes, allowing you to garner an understanding of what type of messaging is resonating with your audience.
There is also the ability to use a reach and frequency tool in order to guarantee your reach for a fixed price. TV advertisers in the U.S and India can also take advantage of a new white-glove service that includes personally curated premium inventory and fixed pricing.
Advertisers should follow the millions of eyes that are being diverted away from traditional TV in favour of digital alternatives such as Facebook Watch. Brand-focused, video advertising needs to adapt in order to communicate with these audiences by adopting formats such as Facebook In-Stream.
By adding In-Stream to your marketing mix, you are not only able to reach a wide, and growing audience, you are also able to better connect with them on a more personal level by serving relevant ads in line with their interests.