Posted July 31, 2013 7:02 am by with 1 comment

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facebook-icon 1Imagine you are checking your Facebook news feed and there before your very eyes is a video ad just like the kind you skip over when DVRing your favorite TV shows. Wouldn’t that be neat?!

Well, according to a report from Bloomberg this reality may not be far off and if the numbers quoted are accurate, advertisers will be paying a pretty penny (actually up to $2.5m worth of pennies) to get in your feed. Now let’s remember kids, Facebook is free to the commoners so don’t gripe too loud.

The Bloomberg report tells us

Facebook Inc. (FB), seeking to break the long-held dominance of television over advertising budgets, plans to sell TV-style commercials on its site for as much as $2.5 million a day, two people familiar with the matter said.

The world’s largest social-networking site, which has 1.15 billion members, expects to start offering 15-second spots to advertisers later this year, according to the people, who asked not to be named because the plans aren’t public.

As with many of the new ways to advertise, I have two very distinct reactions. The first is as a Facebook user and anything that clutters up an increasingly cluttered news feed even more is met with a sigh and the recognition that it’s a free service. This is then followed by the question “Would I pay, say, $5 per month to have an ad free Facebook?”. Mileage varies on that one.

The other reaction I have is as a marketer and that one says at up to $2.5m per day, I will be writing about these and not placing them. Not to mention, it is likely a good thing for large brand advertisers.

Facebook’s stock is finally getting back to its IPO levels (For now at least. Oh and how smart do those folks who bought a crap load of the stock at $19 look about right now?) so any new options it can put in the marketplace to increase ad revenue is going to help investors get more comfortable. This means increased investment activity and more money to continue to build and refine Facebook for the future.

The Bloomberg piece continues

While the social network already allows advertisers to upload videos to their Facebook page and then broadcast them to a user’s news feed, the new service would let marketers buy their way directly into a person’s feed with a 15-second pitch, according to the people. That’s typically the minimum length of a television commercial.

At 15 seconds, the ads also would be the same length as Facebook’s Instagram videos — a feature that was added to the company’s photo-sharing service last month. That means the commercials would come in a familiar format for users.

Facebook members won’t see a commercial more than three times in a given day, the people said. Depending on how large an audience an advertiser plans to reach, the ads will range in price from $1 million to about $2.5 million a day, according to the people.

In total, the plan is to have these ads take up about 5% of a user’s news feed. Small ‘price to pay’?

So like the idea, hate the idea or be indifferent to the idea, it’s coming. What’s your take?

  • Wow that is news! I can’t say I surprised though. As a consumer I am not happy. Facebook is supposed to be a Social Media. This step will take it to a “Media” without the social. If there is an offer to turn off advertisements, I believe some will take it, but more will find another venue of choice.

    As a marketer, I am frustrated. We have always had to jump through hoops to contact potential clients/customers. This will make it even harder for the little guy.

    Business is full of changes so we just need to change our strategies once again. If you are not flexible and imaginative your business will reflect it.

    Thanks for the heads up.
    ~ Karen