Last year, Facebook began testing Reels within the Facebook app for users in the US. The feature is now being rolled out to more than 150 countries worldwide, and to monetize them, Facebook is introducing Overlay ads in Reels. It is also receiving a couple of new updates to improve the creator experience and discovery experience.
According to Facebook, watching video contributes to nearly half the time spent on average by users on Instagram and Facebook. So naturally Facebook is looking to monetize that viewing time, and Reels looks to be a great way to do that.
One of the ways Facebook is looking to monetize Reels is with the introduction of overlay ads. These ads appear transparently over Reels content, which means they will mostly be unobtrusive. Facebook is testing two types of overlay ads: banner ads and sticker ads. The former appears as a semi-transparent overlay at the bottom of a Facebook Reel, whereas the latter is a static image ad that can be placed by a creator anywhere within their reel.
Creators who have access to in-stream ads for on demand on Facebook will be eligible to add overlay ads in their reels. Once added, they can earn a portion of the ad revenue.
Along with this, Reels is receiving a number of updates that are aimed at creators:
- Remix: Create your own reel alongside an existing, publicly-shared reel on Facebook. This feature is similar to how Remix works on Instagram
- 60-second Reels: Make reels up to 60 seconds long.
- Drafts: You will soon be able to create a reel and choose to “Save As Draft” below the Save button.
- Video Clipping: Facebook will soon roll out video clipping tools that will make it easier for creators who publish live or long-form, recorded videos to test different formats.
Regarding Reels discoverability, Facebook is making the following changes:
- Reels in Stories: You can share public reels to Stories on Facebook. You’ll also be able to create reels from existing public stories
- Reels in Watch: You’ll be able to watch reels directly within the Watch tab
- Top of Feed: There is a new Reels label at the top of Feed
- Suggested Reels in Feed: In select countries, Facebook will suggest reels that you may like in your Feed from people you do not already follow.
- Crossposting: Facebook will soon enable crossposting, allowing creators to post Reels across Instagram and Facebook