×
You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Facebook to Test Pre-Roll Ads for Videos, but Not in Your Feed

Facebook is getting ready to test ads that will play before the start of a video in the coming weeks — but those so-called pre-roll ads won’t be showing up in your Facebook feed. Instead, the company is looking to limit testing of pre-roll videos to its Watch tab, Variety has learned.

AdAge was first to report on the coming tests Friday. Facebook declined to comment on the matter.

The move to test pre-roll advertising is notable for Facebook because the company long resisted the ad format, and instead bet on mid-roll ads — ads that interrupt a video — for monetization of video content. In fact, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg had long been a vocal opponent of pre-roll ads, arguing that they weren’t compatible with the company’s news feed.

Facebook’s video business evolved significantly this year with the introduction of the Watch tab, which presents videos in a feed-free environment. The company has also begun to strike licensing deals with publishing partners to seed Facebook Watch with professional content, and is moving towards longer-form shows that more directly compete not only with YouTube, but even Netflix and traditional TV.

Some of the shows launched or scheduled to launch on Watch include a reality series about the family of L.A. Lakers player Lonzo Ball, an unscripted show starring Bill Murray and his brother Brian Doyle-Murray, a reality show about NBA star Dwayne Wade and a drama series produced by Kerry Washington.

Popular on Variety

More Digital

  • Cenk Uygur

    Bernie Sanders Retracts Endorsement of Young Turks Founder Cenk Uygur After Backlash

    Bernie Sanders pulled his support for Cenk Uygur’s congressional bid, with the Vermont independent in part acknowledging that Sanders’ supporters were “frustrated” about the endorsement. Sanders, who’s running for the 2020 Democratic presidential nomination, cited Uygur’s announcement Friday that he would not be accepting any endorsements. In a statement, Sanders alluded to sexist and other [...]

  • Tana MongeauStreamy Awards, Arrivals, The Beverly

    Streamy Awards 2019: The Complete Winners List

    The 9th Annual Streamy Awards — honoring the best from YouTube and online video — were held Friday night in Beverly Hills. Tana Mongeau (pictured above) was named Creator of the Year and Rhett & Link’s “Good Mythical Morning” won Show of the Year in the two fan-voted Audience Choice categories. David Dobrik picked up [...]

  • NBC News - Quibi

    NBC News Digital Workers Form New Union

    A group of approximately 150 editorial workers who help produce some of NBC News digital content have formed a union, citing a desire to push their employer to work more seriously through such issues as equal pay and the recent handling of sensitive stories. Editorial employees of NBC News Digital won certification of their union [...]

  • Fox Nation Tests Holiday Programming

    Fox Nation Tests Holiday Programming

    The Fox Nation streaming-video service has long been touted as a new option for super-fans of the Fox News Channel. But some of the broadband hub’s new programming choices suggest adherents of “Fox & Friends” and Sean Hannity aren’t looking solely for chatter about politics and interviews with members of the Trump administration. Subscribers to [...]

  • Facebook

    FTC May Stop Facebook From Integrating Whatsapp, Instagram

    The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) is weighing whether it should seek an injunction against Facebook to prevent the social media giant from integrating services like Whatsapp, Messenger and Instagram with its core app, according to reports from the Wall Street Journal and the New York Times. Regulators fear that Facebook’s app integration plans could make [...]

  • Ivanka Trump

    Ivanka Trump Reportedly Set to Speak at CES 2020

    Ivanka Trump, President Donald Trump’s daughter and an adviser to the president, is scheduled to appear on a panel at CES 2020 in January, according to a published report. Ivanka Trump will appear on a panel set for Jan. 8 at 3 p.m. at the Las Vegas confab with Gary Shapiro, president and CEO of [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content