At Facebook we believe that every good solution starts with a well-informed problem. Through conversations and feedback with our partners over the past year, we’ve been able to better understand the growing challenge of reaching audiences within a premium, brand-safe video environment.
This challenge coincides with a growing trend in consumer behavior: premium video viewing, on demand. As streaming services command more consumer time and attention, younger audiences—particularly the sought-after age group of 18-34—are choosing options outside the traditional viewing ecosystem.
We launched the Watch tab on Facebook in August 2017 to create a front door to video on the platform. In Watch, people can find videos from publishers and creators, along with Facebook Originals, live sports and more. As of June, there are more than 720 million people monthly and 140 million people daily who spend at least one minute on Watch around the world. And on average, these 140 million daily visitors spend more than 26 minutes in Watch. This platform allowed us to build a valuable experience for consumers and new ad opportunities for marketers.
You may be familiar with In-Stream Reserve, which allows you to run in the top tier of video content across Facebook. This year, we built on that opportunity and introduced Facebook Showcase in the U.S. Showcase is the only way to buy that premium inventory upfront, at a fixed cost, through a managed service. Showcase campaigns align to how you do business: They’re bought on an insertion order and delivered against Nielsen demographics.
We’ve used the word “premium” a lot when we describe the In-Stream Reserve content ecosystem. Other platforms do this, too. So, it’s important for us to be specific about what this means, distinctively, on our platform. There are three components to this, and they get to the core of what Showcase offers.
First is the hard-to-reach audiences that are watching this longer-form video. On average, every month, nearly 100 million people in the U.S. watch In-Stream Reserve eligible content. That’s equivalent to more than one-third of the U.S. television universe. And 43 percent of our viewers are 18-34, compared with 29 percent of the TV universe in the demo.
Next are the criteria we use to carefully select the best content on our platform for In-Stream Reserve:
- Retentiveness: Viewers demonstrate repeat viewing behavior, continuing to watch on an on-going basis.
- Intentionality: People seek out the content.
- Popularity: The content’s video page has a robust following.
- Quality: Production quality of the video.
- Brand safety: The content is safe for ad adjacency, following our robust publisher and content level reviews.
Last but not least is our focus on brand safety. This isn’t just a feature of Showcase—it’s the core of the offering. Here’s how we break down our brand-safety principles:
- Community and monetization standards: Our community standards apply to all content on Facebook. In addition, in-stream ads will only appear in video content that meets our guidelines for monetization and would not include content that most advertisers would deem sensitive, from restricted categories such as tragedy or conflict, debated social issues, explicit content, etc.
- Industry standards: All In-Stream Reserve content is reviewed for the same sensitive categories as broadcast.
- Content review: We go through the list of In-Stream Reserve eligible publishers and do a human review of each. Then, all individual videos go through human review before an ad being served.
- Reporting transparency: We will provide you with a full list of all potential publishers before your campaign runs. Post-campaign, we provide a list detailing the publishers where your ads ran (from most to least impressions).
We’ve built this opportunity thanks to your partnership and feedback, and we’re pleased to be able to offer it as this year’s upfront investments are planned. Showcase was designed to let you to accurately reach hard-to-find audiences through longer-form content in a brand-safe environment, aligned to the ways you already buy. We are excited to continue building solutions that meet your needs and ultimately help expand your businesses.
Sources: 1. Facebook data, US, June 2019. 2. Facebook internal data across surfaces including Watch, News Feed and Pages. US only, people 18+. Data averaged across Nov 7, 2018-Jan 31, 2019. “In-Stream Reserve video viewers” are defined as people that spent at least one minute watching a video at least three minutes in length, from an in-stream reserve qualified page. 3. Facebook internal data across surfaces including Watch, News Feed and Pages. US only, people 18+. Nov 7, 2018-Jan 31, 2019. “In-Stream Reserve video viewers” are defined as people that spent at least one minute watching a video at least three minutes in length, from an In-Stream Reserve qualified page. 4. Nielsen National Universe Estimates, US only, people 18+, November 7, 2018-January 31, 2019.
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