Facebook's new streaming video platform dubbed Watch is finally rolling out to the U.S. Once available, it will replace the current video section on Facebook's web version and mobile apps.
What is Facebook Watch? It is a programming guide and outlet for hundreds of shows and original content that will be hosted on the social media platform.
As online video content is increasingly stealing viewers away from traditional TV, advertisers are starting to shift their strategies around and Watch is an opportunity for Facebook to snag a piece of the online video ad revenue pie. The site is currently testing how ads and commercial breaks will work within the Facebook Watch shows.
Aside from a programming guide, Watch is also the social media giant's way of getting into the video programming strategy that streaming stalwarts like Netflix, Amazon Video, YouTube, and Hulu are already engaged in. To get the ball rolling, Facebook itself has produced some of the shows itself.
According to sources, Facebook has started paying content creators from $10,000 for shorter shows and up to $250,000 for longer ones to supply the Watch platform with original episodes. Show submission will then gradually open up to everyone with an opportunity for the creator to receive 55 percent of the ad revenue.
During its three-week beta phase, testers were treated with hundreds of shows from video outfits such as Discovery, ABC, Buzzfeed, Vox, A&E, among others, and even live Major League Baseball Games.
Facebook Watch Shows
Here are some of the shows available on Facebook Watch:
- Tastemade's "Kitchen Little" - a show about kids providing recipe instructions to professional chefs in order to cook specific dishes
- Animal Planet's "Celebrity Animal Encounters" - Celebrities recall their humorous run-ins with animals
- Buzzfeed's "The Try Guys" - a funny show about four guys trying out various stunts
- "Wise Guy" - Tech guru Guy Kawasaki offers life advice based on his extensive experience in the tech industry
- Nasdaq's "Cultural Capital" - 12-episode, behind-the-scenes look at the most innovative U.S. companies
- MLB Live - Every Friday night, a free Major League Baseball game will be streamed live
- College Football - Facebook is teaming up with the Stadium sports network to livestream a handful of college football games this season
This is just a sampling of the shows and there's much more current and upcoming content available on Facebook Watch.
Although Facebook does not intend to make original content production its main strategy, it hopes the new section will create a more community-driven and personal online video destination for its more than a billion users while providing a great platform for content creators to market their shows.
What do you think? Are you excited about Facebook Watch? Drop us a comment!