"Video creative has proven to be an effective way to drive engagement in news feed, and we look forward to helping developers use their video creative to find new app installs," said Facebook software engineer Radu Margarint.
Designed to highlight the best features of the app, the mobile video ads include use of lifestyle or product shots along with in-app screenplays, Facebook said. Mobile app video ads are a win for app producers, who previously could showcase their apps only through text and images.
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Video ads for app developers is the latest announcement from Facebook related to its recent push into video advertising. Reports that Facebook was close to launching TV-style ads that would run in users' news feeds surfaced this summer. These ads were said to cost between $1 million and $2.5 million a day. Facebook said that the ads for app developers will appear in auction like any other ad; whether the ad is a photo or video doesn't affect its pricing.
Last month, Facebook announced that it is testing a new feature with a small group of Facebook mobile users that automatically plays videos when a user pauses on one while scrolling through their news feed. According to Facebook, video ads for mobile developers will not automatically play; users must click to see them.
Most recently, Facebook-owned Instagram announced that it was launching both image- and video-based ads for a handful of trusted brands. Users would reportedly have some control over which ads they see; if it shows you one you don't like, you can hide it and provide feedback about what you didn't like.
In addition to the new mobile app video ads, Facebook also announced a new way to bid and optimize for mobile app installs. Previously, it offered advertisers the option to bid on a cost per click (CPC) or optimized cost per impression. Now, developers can set a cost per action (CPA) bid that Facebook said will better manage their budgets while maximizing installs. "Based on internal Facebook tests, buying on CPA drives on average 20% lower cost per install than buying on CPC," Facebook said.
Both video ads for app developers and the new CPA buying option will roll out gradually over the next several days, Facebook said.