I was quoted in today's Adweek article about Facebook's autoplay ads.
Here are my full thoughts:
Facebook has become a place where people share content in all kinds of formats. Bandwidth and streaming technology is finally at a place that makes video extremely accessible and easy to consume across devices in various conditions. With its emphasis on native video, Facebook is beginning to contend with YouTube—especially for ad dollars.
However, just because it’s an autoplay video ad, doesn’t mean it’ll perform well. Relevance through targeting is an important factor of success and most of all, the actual creative is key. The power of autoplay is in its potential to break through the clutter and grab people’s attention. The first few seconds of the video is crucial to doing that.
Content matters big time both to draw audiences in and to sustain them long enough to make a brand linkage. Taking a brand’s 15 second TV spot and force fitting into a Facebook autoplay ad isn’t going to cut it. The creative must be tailored to the native format and consumption behaviors of the specific platform it’s running on. Facebook, Snapchat, Vine, etc. are all different in format, storytelling, and audience norms but they all must ladder up to a larger video strategy.
Twitter recently launched their autoplay ad solution and just last month CNN’s getting in on their own autoplay game. Publishers are going to chase the ripest revenue streams and build out their ad tech accordingly. It’ll continue to evolve as tech capabilities advance with consumer behavior. But one thing is absolutely certain: Video has been a central part of people’s lives since the dawn of motion pictures in the early 1900s. How we experience video will continue to evolve. And you can bet that advertisers will find ways to be part of it, as publishers need to monetize.
It’s ironic to think that regular TV commercials have always been inherently “auto play” but in a world of ad skipping, they have to work so much harder to grab viewers’ attention. That’s why brands are now creatively embedding themselves into actual TV programming with less singular reliance on the standard commercial pod.
But the bigger question is what’s “television” today, anyway? The lines between TV and video content have blurred. Gone are the days of TV campaigns. Brands today need a comprehensive video strategy that transcends media channels while creatively respecting their uniquely native opportunities. It’s time we’re all coloring outside of the lines.
You can read the resulting Adweek article.