Business Technology

Facebook slideshow to make video ads easier and more affordable for small businesses

3 min read

30 October 2015

Former deputy editor

Facebook has introduced a new slideshow video ad format, which will allow companies to integrate images into their social media video marketing efforts – a development designed to provide small businesses with more flexibility and opportunities.

Additionally, the social network hopes to support emerging markets where connection speeds and device types vary drastically to those in developed countries.

But the main idea of Facebook’s slideshow effort is that it will provide small businesses with better ease of use when they want to create a video ad.

Indeed, the slideshow concept will be a video, albeit one made from a series of images – not entirely unlike a Powerpoint presentation. The idea is that it will be simpler for those that aren’t tech-savvy enough to film and edit some footage themselves, and cheaper for those that don’t have the cash to pay for a videographer.

“Right now, as more video consumption moves online and to mobile, people around the world report wanting to engage with more video content on mobile, including ads,” said Facebook.

“In fact, a recent report suggests that in countries like Nigeria and the Philippines where connectivity can be slow, expensive or both and where feature phones are prevalent, people are even more receptive to video ads

“But video poses some challenges to advertisers, especially for small businesses and businesses reaching people in emerging and high-growth countries around the world, where connectivity and the prevalence of basic devices make it difficult for advertisers to deliver video to their entire audience.”

Described as a “lightweight video ad”, companies can make slideshows comprising between three and seven still images. The pictures can be taken from an existing video, a photo shoot, or even Facebook’s stock image library to generate a slideshow of between five and 15 seconds.

Read more on Facebook and its SME focus:

According to the company, early tests revealed a 15-second slideshow can be up to five times small in file size than a video counterpart.

Coca-Cola has been among the early users of slideshow, using the platform in Kenya and Nigeria to promote a new Coke Studio Africa show. 

The firm used high-resolution images from the video footage and uploaded them with text footage to reach people with feature phones and slow connections. The end result was a reach of two million people – double the target.

Ahmed Rady, marketing director, Coca-Cola Central, East and West Africa, said: “We are pleased with how the Facebook slideshow campaign performed across our key markets in Africa. The campaign over-delivered on reach by one million and had a 10 point increase in ad awareness in Kenya.

“We recognise that our consumers may have constraints when accessing video content, hence the slideshow option by Facebook is spot on in enabling us to still deliver impactful and quality content.”