Facebook’s latest attempt at monetization includes video ads that are embedded inside games. The ads can be closed, but users that view that ads will be able to earn Facebook Credits — the company’s virtual currency — for watching the sponsored videos in their entirety.
“It’s another way to get users to be more comfortable with Credits,” said Deb Liu, head of Facebook Credits. “It gets developers to adopt Credits and helps users understand what Credits are.”
Sponsored videos will be rolled out to 350 games and apps on Facebook. The Facebook Credits that users earn can in turn purchase additional applications. The currency will also enable gamers to buy additional goods for their favorite games, such as better weapons or decorations.
Although pop-up videos don’t always guarantee an improved user experience, Facebook does believe they will generate more interest in Facebook Credits. Social video advertising company Sharethrough believes that the videos will be successful since they seamlessly integrate branding into online entertainment.
“Sharethrough exists to help brands succeed with content, not ads. This program is a huge validation of that vision, as it will create premium opportunities for brand video content to be seen and shared,” said Dan Greenberg, co-founder and CEO of Sharethrough. “We are thrilled to see Facebook provide game publishers with a powerful new way to monetize their games via Facebook Credits and for the lift that this will bring to the social video advertising industry.”