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The Drum Digital Transformation Festival launch

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Gordon Young
Editor-in-chief at The Drum

Facebook targets TV media buyers with 'upfront' programme

Facebook eyes slice of TV ad spend with video advertising offer

Facebook is pitching upfront media buys to advertisers, offering the chance to secure slots around a selection of premium video content for US audiences up to a year in advance.

Announced yesterday (27 February) in New York, the premium video-ad service has been branded 'Facebook Showcase' and will encompass a range of original and long-form creator content offered to advertisers on an ‘upfront’ basis, ensuring ad buyers can lock-in advertising at pre-set rates with guaranteed ad impressions, up to a year in advance.

This marks a significant extension on past practice, where advertisers were only offered video ad slots three months ahead of time.

The changes mark the logical next step for the company as it invests heavily in original content and its own dedicated video hub, as well as courting third-party publishers such as CBS, BuzzFeed and WWE, generating an estimated 100m views per month across all eligible content.

By focussing on ‘premium’ content Facebook hopes to circumvent the brand safety scandals which have sent advertisers scattering for the hills, with every frame of content reviewed by a human moderator before being admitted to the program.

Erik Geisler, Facebook’s head of US agency sales, said: “Brand safety is the product."

Facebook didn't share its rate card but Geisler said CPMs will be “competitive with other ad platforms like us,” which in Q1 were between $23 and $25.

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