Since You Probably Won’t be Able to Afford Facebook Video Ads…

We don’t have a lot of details at this point, but we’re anticipating that this summer Facebook will roll out video ads — 15 second ads that reportedly will autoplay and mute by default, allowing users to tune in if they want to, but keep scrolling if they don’t. Facebook’s Client Council which includes major brands like American Express, Unilever, Ford and Coca-Cola are said to be testing the new video ads which will let advertisers choose from one of four demographics to target — women over 30, women under 30, men over 30 and men under 30.

How will Facebook Video Ads work?

The company has yet to release all the details so there are still many questions about how Facebook video ads will work. We don’t know exactly how far of a reach or distribution advertisers will have. And we don’t know if the ads will only be seen by users who already like a certain brand or if they will extend to friends of friends, or if they’ll be seen by everyone. But AdAge, one of the first publications to report on this story, says that several of the executives interviewed are suspecting that advertisers will be able to target these video ads to Facebook users whether or not the user or his friends has any relationship on Facebook with the advertiser.

How much will Facebook Video Ads cost?

What we do know, however, is that these ads are going to be expensive. Reports are circulating that the cost of entry will start at about $1 million, so don’t expect to be overrun with video ads from every brand, company or non-profit organization you’ve ever followed anytime soon. They’ll likely be reserved for the big guys until Facebook gets a better idea of how receptive users are to the videos. There is a fear that they won’t be well received.

For the majority of brands though, one thing to remember is that you don’t have to have deep pockets to take advantage of video. In fact, if it isn’t yet, video should be a part of your social strategy at this point. Why? Well, research from Marketing Sherpa, Forrester, and Gartner all say the same thing:  video is consistently first or second in driving conversions over a 12-month period. And as far as search engine optimization goes, video goes far in helping your Google page rank.

By creating a YouTube channel and hosting your videos there, then getting full use from those videos by embedding them in your blog and on your website, as well as, linking to them in Facebook posts and tweets, you’re not only getting significant views of your content, but you’re also helping your rankings.

The point to remember is that as we get closer to seeing video ads pop up on Facebook and buzz about how advertisers should be taking advantage of this sweet opportunity to get in front of the legions of Facebook users, remember you have a tool at your fingertips. And though it may not put you neck-and-neck with Coca-cola and American Express, it can help to get your message in front of scores, if not hundreds, of potential new customers or prospective clients, and for the little guys that certainly goes a long way.

Check out how Zen Media’s CEO Shama Kabani is using video at Shama.Tv and be sure to subscribe via YouTube .


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