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Report: Facebook to Get 15-second Commercials in News Feed

Ad Age reports that Facebook is gearing up to insert video advertisements into the news feed. The ad rollout is expected to litter Facebook pages during the first half of 2013, unnamed industry executives claim, in an attempt to pull in huge ad dollars from TV advertisers.

Currently the popular social network is debating on several features to be included in the new advertising product, but is targeting an April launch. The video ad platform will span across the desktop and mobile versions of the site as well as the apps for Android, iOS and other platforms.

But don't worry: these video ads aren't expected to consume your entire screen or eat up chunks of valuable socializing time. Facebook is wanting to keep the "commercials" at 15 seconds at the most, a new format that could very well spill over to other sites on the Internet. They'll also automatically start, but Facebook is still debating on whether audio should load automatically as well.

According to the report, the desktop version will "grab" the user's attention by expanding out from the news feed and splashing across the webpage real estate, filling the area from left to right. Facebook is also looking to do something similar with the mobile site and apps although the method of delivery is currently unclear.

Executives claim that Facebook is actually highlighting the mobile aspect when demonstrating the new ad scheme to possible clients. Advertisers will be able to show the same video to the same user up to three times a day across all devices including tablets, smartphones and the desktop. But whether advertisers will bite is unknown at this point – they see Facebook as wanting a piece of the Hollywood pie by charging high rates the same way advertisers are charged on Hulu.

Currently video ads only appear in a user's news feed if that person or his/her friend has "liked" the advertiser's brand page, and the video was posted on that page. But the execs believe that won't be the case with Facebook's new ad system: advertisers will be able to target Facebook users no matter who likes what.

"The assumption is that these would be widespread campaigns," one of the execs said. "They are looking to grab big chunks of money ... millions of dollars."

To read the full report, head here.

 

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