By Harshit Agarwal, Product Manager
Creating value for publishers using Instant Articles is extremely important to us, and it is critical to our mission of delivering the best mobile reading experience for people on Facebook. Publishers tell us they measure value from Instant Articles in terms of traffic growth and per-page monetization, so we have focused our investments in this product along those two dimensions.
As we first announced last month, we’re bringing more options for publishers to monetize their Instant Articles.
New Formats for Direct Sold and Audience Network to Increase Yield
For publishers with direct sold advertising businesses, we now support larger and flexible ad units in Instant Articles, up to an aspect ratio of 2:3. Publishers can bring more of their direct sold campaigns to Instant Articles, including custom, premium formats. We expect this will expand available ads inventory and improve overall yield for publishers, while maintaining a great reading experience for people.
Here are some sample formats that will be supported in Instant Articles:
For publishers who monetize Instant Articles with Audience Network, we’re happy to announce that video and carousel ad formats are now rolled out across iOS and Android. These high-value native ad formats provide a more engaging experience for people reading Instant Articles, driving performance for advertisers and revenue for publishers. No additional implementation is needed to benefit from this update.
Vox Media Extends Their Custom Ad Units to Instant Articles
Support for larger and custom ad sizes will allow publishers like Vox Media to extend premium campaigns from their mobile websites onto Instant Articles.
Vox Media has seen success on the mobile web with its proprietary Athena ad unit. With this update, Vox Media will bring the Athena unit to Instant Articles across its editorial brands, including Vox.com and The Verge.
“Over the past four years, Vox Media successfully developed the most effective creative ad formats, technology and ad-tech platform that both optimizes in real-time and captures creative insights for our partners,” said Joe Alicata, VP, Revenue Product and Operations, Vox Media. “We worked with Facebook to incorporate these high performing ad units and capabilities in Instant Articles, to reach our valuable audiences who are watching, reading and sharing amazing content on this platform.”
More Flexibility, More Value: Where we are today
Since the launch of Instant Articles last year, we’ve continually listened to publisher feedback to evolve our policies and product to improve value for publishers. Here is a recap of what has changed across the three ways for publishers to monetize their articles:
- Direct sold campaigns: Publishers can seamlessly extend direct sold campaigns into Instant Articles using their existing ad server implementation, and keep 100% of the revenue. Over the past year, we’ve introduced support for video and animated ads and a broader range of ad sizes – including custom units.
- Audience Network: Publishers can tap into demand from 4 million advertisers on Facebook, leveraging high-value native ad formats and people-based targeting for relevant, engaging ads. Over the past year, we’ve added new formats and objectives (like video and carousel ads today) to drive more value for advertisers and publishers.
- Branded Content: Extend your branded content business to Instant Articles. Over the past year, we’ve built support for branded content to enable publishers to meet brand guidelines and sponsorship obligations, while giving readers the same great, engaging experience for both branded and editorial content.
Additionally, we evolved our policies around ad load in Instant Articles to increase the number of ads per article, and made improvements to our autoplacement feature to make placement of ads as easy and effective as possible for publishers while driving value for people and advertisers. We’ve also started testing a native call-to-action in Instant Articles, which makes it easier for publishers to create deeper relationships with their readers.
Our goal from the beginning has been to provide the best possible experience for people reading news on Facebook, and to drive value for publishers through increased traffic and flexible monetization. Today’s announcement is a direct result of collaboration with our partners and we’ll continue to evolve the program based on publisher feedback.
If you are interested in joining the Instant Articles program, you can learn more here.