Advertisers have been running video ads on Facebook for some time, but according to Mashable, in October the social network plans to take the ads a step further. Dentists can set up video ads to play automatically, whether the user clicks the “play” button or not. Even though the announcement may be welcome news for some advertisers, your customers and patients might not be so excited. To many people, automatic ads can be irritating, but it is possible to create ads that will interest potential patients.
Provide High-Quality Videos for Potential Patients
Even though you might not want to try the autoplay ads until you’ve seen proof from local marketing experts that they work, it’s a good idea to use video to connect to your Facebook audience. Some companies use their 30-second TV ads for Facebook, but the social network is encouraging dentists and other small businesses to use shorter videos that are designed specifically for Facebook use. Experiment with the length of your video to find out what works best for your dental practice. What you find out might surprise you. After all, Twitter’s new Vine tool, which plays 6-second videos, has found success.
If you decide to run an autoplay video ad, make sure it has sound. A silent video may seem less intrusive, but it’s also less likely to grab users’ attention. Also, your best bet is to create something just for Facebook. If you simply run your TV ad on Facebook, it’s likely to turn people away because they’ve seen and heard the message before. Your ad must be original and creative enough to capture viewer attention within the first couple seconds—without annoying your users, a challenge for even the best local social media marketing professionals.
When to Expect the New Feature
Although Facebook is now saying that the autoplay ads will be available in October, they’ve already pushed back the launch date from April.
Facebook’s move toward autoplay video ads might temporarly turn some people away from the social network. Thus far, Facebook has shown a propensity to listen to advertisers’ and users’ concerns when it comes to tools they like and dislike. If the company continues on this track, we can safely assume Facebook will respond if it’s user numbers start to drop.
Facebook has also shown some interest in enabling advertisers to use animated GIF images in their advertising, which could be helpful to dentists that advertise on Facebook. However, it’s impossible to predict when this feature will be available.