Facebook previously admitted that it’s running out of places for ads in the News Feed, which doesn’t sound good for a company making billions of dollars from them. To solve that issue, the social network turned to its other apps and properties — last year, for instance, it started testing static ads within Messenger. Now, 1 Hacker Way is taking things a step further by putting video ads inside its chat application, which will even start playing as you scroll. The company told Quartz that the new ad category will start appearing within its chat app for a small set set of users on Monday, June 25th.
It sounds like more people will eventually be graced with video ads’ presence, as well, because a spokesperson told Quartz that Facebook “will be rolling out video ads gradually and thoughtfully.” The company will make people who “use Messenger each month” its top targets and promises that “they will remain in control of their experience.” Not in total control, though, because while they can hide or report an ad, as well as manage their targeting preferences, they can’t opt out of seeing them altogether.
As you can imagine, it can be awkward seeing an ad randomly play while you scroll through your messages, especially if they’re serious conversations. Messenger ad business head Stefanos Loukakos said, however, that the company doesn’t believe video ads will change the way people use the app.
He told Recode:
“Top priority for us is user experience,. So we don’t know yet [if these will work]. However, signs until now, when we tested basic ads, didn’t show any changes with how people used the platform or how many messages they send.
Video might be a bit different, but we don’t believe so.”