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Facebook Says People are OK with Video Ads that Interrupt Content, As Long As They Are Short

According to Facebook no two formats are equal in terms of effectiveness. “These days people talk a lot about the second screen, but it’s not clear anymore which screen we’re talking about,” said Mark Rabkin, Facebook’s VP of Ads and Business Platform. That reality means that advertisers need to measure different ad formats differently.

People’s attention wanes the fastest in feeds, like on Facebook or Twitter, since an ad is merely one piece of content among many – so the bar for capturing attention is high. But feeds are likely to help forge deeper connections if an ad quickly communicates a message or grabs people’s attention, says Facebook, offering massive scale and reach.

According to Facebook, most people are comfortable with pre-roll and mid-roll video ads they can’t skip, as long as the videos aren’t too long.

A majority of people watch such ads until completion; more than 70% do so for Facebook’s own midroll ads. Facebook says that advertisers can take advantage of these high completion rates by getting to the point quickly: 6-seconds and 15-seconds are emerging as standards for video ads, says the company’s research.

As for unskippable ads, people have become accustomed on tapping on the skip-button as soon as it pops us and zapping through the creative. So, advertisers should consider the first five seconds, what Facebook calls the “pre-skip portion” as an independent high-reach ad placement, and focus on the rest to provide more information to people who have demonstrated their interest.

Facebook, for its part, is urging advertisers to rethink mobile advertising, by pushing out shorter, more attention-grabbing ads in a variety of different creative formats.


Dua, T. (2018, January 5). Facebook Says People are OK with Video Ads that Interrupt Content, as Long as They Are ShortBusiness Insider.