Facebook gamers will soon get paid for watching advertisements, only they won't be earning cold hard cash. Instead, users will be given Facebook Credits which can be used in Facebook games or other related applications.
The new program is part of Facebook's new partnership with social game offer provider TrialPlay and its ad platform called DealSpot. It also signals the beginning of Facebook's move to force publishers to use on-site Credits as their premium, in-game currency for selling virtual goods within their games. For the moment, the use of these Credits is optional but they are available in over 350 titles. Developers who aren't signed on with Facebook's approved offer providers can't even reward users with Credits or virtual money-- they're only allowed to provide virtual goods.
The new advertisement deal seems like a win for everyone. Product advertisers wanting to reach Facebook gamers will contact TrialPlay and set up a branded, in-game advertisement video. Developers wanting a little extra money will then contract TrialPlay's DealSpot platform and set up an "Earn Free Credits" button within their application. Players of Farmville, Buddy Rush and other games will thus be presented with an optional short video advertisement for an unrelated product. Once completed, players are paid in Credits and the developers are paid in cash. Facebook probably gets a sliver of profit too.
Additionally, the DealSpot ad platform will also begin to sprout up on other parts of Facebook, allowing gamers to earn Credits while not playing any specific title. Overall, the idea is to increase the number of Facebook users with Credits stashed in their account to around 3 to 5-percent. Free credits may entice users to spend money on additional credits thereby adding extra coins to Mark Zuckerberg's money vault. Developers and publishers will get a nice chunk too, and if you actually go out and buy that teeth whitening kit, then the product manufacturer who spent money advertising in your game got a little of that investment back.
Reports indicate that video providers Sharethrough, EpicSocial, SocialVibe, and SupersonicAds will be the first companies to have their videos shown in Facebook’s sidebars as well as games via DealSpot.