Facebook Talks 'Anthology' And Other Video Efforts

Chris CrumAdvertising

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Facebook just announced the launch of Anthology, a new marketing program that gives brands access to a group of well-known video publishers to improve the quality of video ads.

This group of publishers includes Vice Media, Vox Media, The Onion, Funny or Die, Electus Digital, Oh My Disney, and Tastemade.

"As video consumption continues to grow on Facebook, it is important to keep videos relevant and engaging — including video ads from brands," a spokesperson for Facebook tells WebProNews. "Given this trend, today Facebook is announcing Anthology, a Facebook Marketing Partner program which brings together leading video publishers and Facebook’s Creative Shop to produce outstanding advertising content that drives value for brands and resonates with people."

The publishers, according to Facebook, will "lend their creative storytelling expertise and video production services to brands, and as Facebook Marketing Partners, Anthology publishers are trained on how to get the most out of Facebook to drive business results."

The spokesperson adds, "In addition to creative ideation and development, the Anthology program leverages Facebook’s unique insights and scale; for each Anthology campaign, Facebook’s Creative Shop partners with brands, agencies and publishers to provide audience planning, insights, distribution plans and measurement."

Facebook reported its Q1 earnings on Wednesday, and during the conference call, the company talked a great deal about video. For one, CEO Mark Zuckerberg said Facebook reached a new milestone of over 4 billion daily video views in Q1. This was apparently helped by a recently launched embedded video player. He said 80,000 videos have been embedded on third-party sites.

"Looking ahead, we believe video will play a significant role in bringing more marketers to mobile," said COO Sheryl Sandberg. "More than 75% of global video views on Facebook occur on mobile – and we believe mobile video will become more important to marketers over time. Lionsgate’s Age of Adaline premiere is a great example. To promote the film, Lionsgate targeted young women on Instagram with multiple video ads over the last few weeks. This week, since the film opens on Friday, they will be retargeting the audience from the Instagram campaign on Facebook. We expect more marketers to put mobile video at the heart of their campaigns in the future, and we’re well positioned to drive this shift."

She later said, "We've always believed that the format of our ads should follow the format of what consumers are doing on Facebook. So many years ago when the homepage ticker was in vogue, we never did that. And so the fact that there's so much consumer video, that gives us the opportunity to do more marketing video as well. It's still early days and we're very focused on quality and it's worth noting that not all of the revenue from video is incremental, because the video ads take the place of other ads that we would have served into News Feed. That said, we're really excited about the opportunity I talked about, increasing the entertainment and media vertical and brand marketers, particularly. But I think all marketers have the opportunity to do video, and that's pretty exciting, including SMBs who would never be able to hire a film crew and buy a TV ad. We're seeing those put videos in. Over 1 million SMBs have posted videos and done really small ad buys around them. And that's pretty cool because I don't think there are probably 1 million advertisers who have bought TV ads in that same period of time."

Asked about the potential for studio and professionally-driven video content, Zuckerberg said, "Right now, a lot of what people are sharing are their social videos and content. There a lot of public figures who have pages often with millions or tens of millions of followers producing unique and really high-quality content that they're pushing out to all their fans on the network today. So, yeah, we'll continue looking at ways to grow that and it's – the product experience that we have right now is growing quite well so we feel good about it."

Asked about video ad pricing, CFO David Wehner said, " video is effectively winning in the auction if it's higher priced. So if somebody's willing to pay more for a video, it's going to get served before another type of format ad. But there's not really a price differential you're paying for a video, it's just what are you willing to pay into the system. So there's not differential pricing by product, it's just what are you willing to bid for the format that you want to show to the people that you want to show it to and that's how the system works."

Seeking Alpha has the full Q&A transcript here.

Image via Facebook

Chris Crum

Chris Crum has been a part of the WebProNews team and the iEntry Network of B2B Publications since 2003. Follow Chris on Twitter, on StumbleUpon, on Pinterest and/or on Google: +Chris Crum.