If you’ve been following along then you know that Facebook was planning to add auto-play video ads to its News Feed some time this year. From the beginning, details have remained scarce regarding the ad unit’s debut, and now it looks like we might be waiting indefinitely.
According to AdAge, the social network has pushed back its intended October launch and hasn’t provided a new timeframe. Sources close to the matter revealed that the company is concerned that the user backlash would be too severe, especially if audio played automatically with the video.
When it comes to Facebook features and updates, members aren’t shy about voicing their opinions. Because of the overwhelming negative reaction to this potential feature, one advertiser told AdAge that his company is hesitant to be among the first group to be associated with video ads.
Despite lacking a new launch date, Facebook is urging participating brands to create video ads that are more social in nature than TV spots. In addition, the company is setting up an internal creative review process intended to ensure only high quality ads make the cut. The social network declined to comment, and it’s still unclear how exactly this process will work.
Facebook’s News Feed and mobile ads are performing exceptionally well for the social network. Although the ad unit is taking longer than expected, it’s good that Facebook is revisiting the impact video ads will have on user experience. The pricey, 15-second ads will reportedly appear to U.S. members three times a day and will begin playing when someone scrolls over them.
If brands are expected to spend anywhere from $1 million to $2.4 million for a daily slot, Facebook had better be sure that video ads are welcome by a majority of consumers — otherwise consumers might not be alone in their backlash.
Jennifer Beese: Jennifer Beese has worked as a community manager and social media strategist. When she’s not writing, you can find her studying anatomy and physiology—she literally has a skeleton in her closet—or under the stars with her telescope.