It will also begin testing sticker ads for Facebook Stories - which allow brands to create stickers that creators will place in their Stories.
Facebook has announced that it will start testing ads on Instagram Reels in India, Brazil, Germany and Australia. Currently, Instagram displays ads in a user’s feed and while they view stories. Instagram Reels is the short format video section of the app - it was introduced in 2020, shortly after TikTok was banned in India.
The social media giant also announced new topic targeting options within Facebook In-Stream video and other ad experiences in Facebook Stories to help increase opportunities for brands to engage with relevant audiences.
According to an article on Facebook’s site, over 2 billion people watch Facebook In-Stream eligible videos every month and, globally, 70 per cent of In-Stream standalone video ads views are completed.
Facebook is also carrying out a global test of In-Stream Video Topics that lets advertisers place ads in certain video topics through Ads Manager — allowing advertisers to align their brand messaging within content that is contextually relevant to their target consumer. This means that for example, a baby care brand can place its ad on a parenting video or a fitness brand can place its ad on a workout video.
This is supposed to be Facebook's biggest move yet to let brands advertise alongside content subjects. Advertisers typically use Facebook to target certain users based on their interests and browsing patterns.
The introduction of ads is an "indication of how strong the momentum is for Reels," said Carolyn Everson, vice president of global business group at Facebook, in an interview, with Reuters.
On Reels, the ads will be full-screen and immersive, similar to ads in Stories. As with organic Reels content, ads can be up to 30 seconds and people can comment, like, view, save, share and skip Reels ads.
"This is a big deal for marketers," Everson said. Facebook also mentioned that it will begin testing sticker ads for Facebook Stories in the coming weeks. This will allow brands to create stickers that creators will place in their Stories - influencers will earn a cut of any sales made through the sticker ads.
According to the report, this feature is part of Facebook's push to court content creators who are increasingly making money directly from fans and followers through platforms such as audio chat app Clubhouse and membership site Patreon.