After months of tests and limited roll-outs, Facebook may finally pull the trigger on video ads. The company announced Thursday that it will deploy 15-second video ads to the News Feed sometime in the next few months.
Facebook formally announced that it would test video ads back in December, with 15-second clips. The formal ads are of the same length, running with muted sound when scrolled over and stopping entirely if a user scrolls past them. Bloomberg says that the units, which will be rolled out sometime in late April or early May, were delayed several times between the testing period and now, but that the company took its time to make sure the ads were not intrusive for users — video ads will not be shown more than three times a day per user.
Successful roll-out of video ads could prove to be a lucrative part of Facebook’s ad strategy. The company’s ad team, which has spent the last few years testing, editing and deploying various ad units to find the right mix of content. Video ads also help bridge the ad gap between Facebook and Instagram, which Facebook acquired in 2012. While Instagram is in the early days of its own ad deployment, Facebook will have the luxury of knowing its video ads work from a technological standpoint — making it much easier to deploy those high-value ads in Instagram and beyond in due time.
No additional information was provided about how the ads have changed since testing. I’ve reached out to Facebook for comment, and will update this post with further information.