Twitter’s Video Formats Rival Facebook’s Auto-Play Ad Units

Written on
May 28, 2014 
Richard L. Tso  |

ADOTAS – You may have noticed that Facebook’s News Feed has gotten a lot more animated recently. As users scroll down the social site on their mobile devices, certain videos uploaded by friends start playing automatically without sound to grab their online attention. Facebook’s video auto-play feature is priming people for the branded auto-play video ads that have been trickling out ever since the company announced them last March.

“We’ll roll out Premium Video Ads slowly and monitor how people interact with them,” Facebook’s product team said in a blog post. “This limited introduction allows us to concentrate our efforts on a smaller number of advertisers with high-quality campaigns to create the best possible experience on Facebook.”

In a move to remain competitive and relevant in the video advertising space, Twitter recently launched its own one-click video formats for brands like Burger King and Budweiser. Just this week, additional details surfaced about some pretty cool extended features to Twitter’s one-click video, specifically the ability for brands to string together pieces of content to create cohesive campaigns and storylines.

After users view a branded video on Twitter, they are presented with a call-to-action that encourages them to view more videos created by the brand. This allows marketers to create vignette-type campaigns that carry a theme forward across several different video executions. For example, Budweiser utilized these features for a series of video tweets to promote the band lineup for the Made In America music festival this coming Labor Day weekend. Consumers who clicked through to the landing page were displayed a chronological view of the videos at the top of the page promoting each band.

The big social networks, YouTube, Facebook and Twitter, have all been exploring new ways to incorporate branded videos, hoping to find the right combination of interactivity and information without pissing off consumers. Ever since Vine popularized the in-stream video auto-play formats, agencies and brands have been searching for new ways to make content longer and reach broader audiences via social networks. All three companies have been relatively successful in implementing video ads on mobile devices, but it will be interesting to see which models prove most successful.

Richard L. Tso is a reporter for Adotas and an avid writer covering the intersection of technology and advertising, fashion and music. With over 12 years of experience in the Advertising, Marketing and Public Relations industries, Richard has held executive positions at global agencies and technology companies and is founder of the interactive communications firm Pseudosound Consulting LLC. A classical cellist and painter, he believes that sometimes sound carries more weight than words. He is a graduate of Stanford University.

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