Facebook Video Monetization

Facebook is taking steps to conquer video; and for good reason. Video sharing has become such a integral element of the internet, attracting viewers in the billions and piquing the interest of a wide range of individuals and parties.

Facebook Video Monetization

The fact that video sharing is proving particularly effective in the arena of marketing, attracting the attention of internet users at a time where text and even image based ads are starting to lose the interest of the online community, sometimes proving irritating, is making video quite the ripe opportunity for a giant like Facebook to pursue.

Facebook VS. YouTube

For all the noise arising from Facebook about its video offerings, one cannot ignore the giants already reigning over the video sharing market, chief amongst which is YouTube. And you would expect any social media platform attempting to conquer the video sharing arena to wilt under the gaze of the YouTube brand.

But not Facebook; in a little over a year the platform has managed to attract an impressive one billion video views a day, a feat that YouTube required a few years to achieve. Admittedly Facebook enjoys the sorts of advantages that YouTube could only dream of during its earlier days, most important of which is the fact that Facebook is the largest social networking site in the world.

The Currency of Exposure

Despite having spent the last several months under the shadow of its failings with regards to Facebook Video monetization, one cannot argue with the success the platform’s video offering has attracted, and this could be imputed to the exposure it brings to the table.

As the largest social media platform in the world, Facebook brings more than a billion users to the video sharing game, each of whom is eager to consume content and, hence, provides video content creators with a ready market whose attention they have the opportunity to utilize in their marketing efforts.

Admittedly, one might scoff at Facebook’s boast of more than a billion video views a day; after all Facebook’s approach to counting views somewhat varies with YouTube. While YouTube requires its users to click specific video linkd, Facebook is happy to count every video that plays for more than three minutes. How this might impact the final figures is a little difficult to determine. 

Does that mean that Facebook can keep skating to success on the wings of the massive opportunities for worldwide exposure that it brings to content creators? Not quite.

The Facebook video Monetization problem

The rationale behind Facebook’s attempts at integrating with the video sharing arena makes all the sense in the world; after all, the only way the social media platform can keep Facebook users on its site as opposed to sending them off to video sharing websites like YouTube is to begin delivering its own native videos, videos of quality and entertaining value capable of contending with YouTube and its ilk.

Yet, the value of Facebook’s video content has, for a long time, been restricted to the exposure it offers to its users; the platform has had no particularly effective means of monetizing the videos uploaded by users.

When it comes to video content, the real money lies with video ads; YouTube generates ad revenue in the billions of dollars every year. It is hardly surprising that investors have, over time, shown some anxiety over the direction of Facebook in this arena (though many have chosen to trust Mark Zuckerberg and his ability to take advantage of this opportunity).

An effective means of monetizing video content could allow Facebook access to an exponentially impactful source of ad revenue. Beyond the opportunities for ad revenue, one also has to consider the effect on users, an efficient means of monetizing video content compelling individuals to flock to Facebook as a reliable source of revenue (which in turn would only build upon the platform’s opportunities for ad revenue).

Admittedly, a lack of methods for monetizing video content hardly makes Facebook a failure, the exposure it provides to users likely to continue enticing publishers for several years to come; though, if relatively recent developments are to be considered, Facebook might finally have the opportunity to have its cake and eat it too.

The Solution

Following rumblings on the internet about Facebook’s useful yet somewhat disappointing video content opportunity, the platform has finally taken steps to create an effective scheme of monetization, sharing the revenues with the creators in the process.

The Facebook Video Monetization scheme will not differ that greatly from the YouTube approach, essentially delivering 55% of the revenue earned from ads to the content creators while retaining the remaining 45.

With publishers more likely to publish video content if there is an opportunity to benefit financially, Facebook is hardly another YouTube Copy cat in a different skin. The platform has chosen to avoid the YouTube style Pre-roll ads even while crafting an entirely new environment within which video content can be enjoyed.

When a user selects a video, they are transported to a black screen with a list of so called suggested videos within the same arena as their chosen video; the ads are designed to emerge every few videos. Rather than being attached to any one piece of content, Facebook treats its ads like TV commercials, inserting them between videos.

And rather than interrupt and, hence, irritate users, these ads are silent; and by playing without sound, the Facebook video monetization scheme allow users to enjoy their video content without drastic disruptions.

Revenue will be distributed based on the length of time a given user spends on a video; this as opposed to YouTube, which avails ad revenue equally no matter the quality or attributes of the video.
The fact that Facebook hasn’t released any information regarding the money it is making on video ads has caused some concern; but on a whole most industry watchers have approached Facebook’s monetization scheme positively, predicting it to become the social media site’s biggest source of revenue in the coming month and years. 

Facebook can expect to face stiff competition from YouTube; the video sharing giant is not going to give up without a fight, already beginning to generate new strategies and offers to more effectively appeal to audiences, new and old.

What is certain are the financial opportunities likely to emerge from Facebook in the coming months and the large number of users likely to pursue them.