Meta Announces Future Plans For Reels Ads, AI At Cannes Lions

Reels and artificial intelligence (AI) made up the bulk of Meta's presentations at this year’s Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity. The social media giant has announced plans to expand and enhance Reels ads, as well as AI-powered chatbots, media editing and more.

On the Reels front -- Meta’s fastest-growing content format -- the company said it is expanding ads on Instagram Reels to advertisers via image ads directly on Reels content, “without interrupting the person watching the Reel.”

In addition, Meta is bringing app promotional ads (known formerly as app install ads) to Facebook and Instagram Reels “to help businesses reach more people and grow their user base,” the company wrote in a blog post.

People are re-sharing Reels more than two billion times every day, a figure Meta claims has doubled over the past six months. With such a high level of traffic on the short-video format, Meta hopes app promotional ads will provide advertisers with a better chance at breaking “through a noisy marketplace.”

To add some extra flare to single image reel ads, Meta announced that it is testing music optimization in Facebook Reels with “diverse, free, and high quality music” from its Meta Sound Collection library. Advertisers will eventually be able to add music while creating their campaigns via Creative Editor, or in Advantage+ Creative.

Sound, according to the company, is key in delivering higher positive response scores on Reels ads.

The company said it is also beginning to test its newly launched brand-suitability Inventory Filter on Reels, which rolled out in March to select advertisers on Feed, alongside a third-party verification solution in partnership with brand-suitability company Zefr.

“These solutions are important milestones in our ongoing brand safety and suitability efforts,” the company stated, adding that it has spent years working with the Global Alliance for Responsible Media (GARM) to “ensure that harmful content is not monetized” -- although the Federal Trade Commission recently claimed that Meta violated its privacy promises by profiting from data collected from young users.

Furthermore, Meta continued its ongoing AI push at Cannes Lions, announcing “imagined” plans to increase automated capabilities for brands, marketers, and creators including expanded AI-powered suitability controls, AI assistants, stickers and media editing

Along with businesses developing customer support chatbots, Meta wants its users to “imagine a world where creators and public figures will be able to make their own AIs for generating content or engaging with fans.”

In this way, Meta’s news around AI assistants remains vague -- a future investment.

“We think people will want to interact with lots of different AIs,” the company said. “And we believe it’s important to have a diverse array of AI Assistants to represent people, creators, and businesses’ interests. For example, a person could get customer support from their favorite small business without having to wait on the phone.”

Meta also envisions integrated automation into stickers on Instagram and Facebook, providing businesses with the means create custom stickers “tied to moments in time or a marketing campaign.”

Finally, Meta wants to explore AI-generated videos that provide users with a way to create or add elements to their video campaigns “without the cost of reshooting from scratch,” believing that AI-generated videos will “forever change how creators, businesses, and even our users interact with video creation.”

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