Get ready to see commercials in live and non-live videos on Facebook. Facebook's grand plan to become the future of TV is coming together.
Aiming to take on YouTube in a bigger way and help creators make money off of their videos, On Thursday, the company announced that it will let publishers show ad breaks in the middle of their prerecorded videos for the first time.
In order to make money off of the ads in Facebook Live, the creator has to have 2,000 or more followers and an audience of a minimum of 300 viewers in a recent live video. YouTube already offers a way for creators to monetize their content, with creators getting 55% of the revenue generated from ads. Creators have been anxiously awaiting a similar move by Facebook, which finally came Thursday. Facebook had hinted at what was to come in June saying it was working on a plan for creators to monetize their content.
According to a blog post from Facebook, creators can take their first ad break after the video has been streaming live for at least four minutes. Additional ad breaks can happen after a minimum of five minutes of streaming, with each break lasting 20 seconds. Facebook had been testing the feature with a small group of video creators before making it available to all of its Live creators. Facebook didn’t say how much the creators would make other than that the broadcaster will “earn a share of the resulting ad revenue.”
Facebook: Huge Opportunity In Video
This isn’t the only thing Facebook is doing when it comes to streaming video. Earlier this week, Reuters reported Facebook is in discussions with Major League Baseball (MLB) to livestream games on its platform. Facebook is reportedly gearing up to stream one game per week. Facebook streamed the Professional Golf Association (PGA) Tour and a couple of basketball games on its network last year, but lost out in the bidding war to live stream National Football League (NFL) games. Social networks benefit from live streaming sports games in two ways. For starters, they could gain a share of the TV ad pie by live streaming events. Also, live sports could boost engagement levels from users, something Facebook needs to do given reports last year that is engagement levels are declining.
"Whether on Facebook or off, we're committed to continuing to work with our partners to develop new monetization products and ad formats for digital video," Facebook VP of Partnerships, Nick Grudin, said in a statement. "It's early days, but today's updates are a step towards this goal."
Monetizing video has become an increasingly important part of Facebook's strategy to capture lucrative brand ad dollars from the TV industry. CEO Mark Zuckerberg has said that video is a "mega-trend" for Facebook akin to mobile phones. The company is currently looking into funding its own original shows and is set to release a standalone app for TVs in the coming weeks .
You can learn more about Facebook's ad break updates on its company blog .
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