CBS plans to bring late-night clips to Facebook Watch
- CBS will show clips from its late-night programming on Facebook Watch, the social network's video tab for professionally-produced content that launched last year, according to Ad Age. Short-form videos from the "Late Show with Stephen Colbert" and the "Late Late Show with James Corden" will Thursday afternoons and on Mondays, respectively.
- Marc DeBevoise, president of CBS Interactive, told Ad Age that the clips will run with ad breaks to start, and he expects the inventory to grow as the ad model evolves. He also said CBS is looking to create more content for Watch down the road.
- CBS won't be producing original content for Facebook Watch as part of the arrangement but will repurpose footage from the full-length episodes into bite-sized clips. Terms of the deal, including which company will sell the ads and how revenue will be split, weren't disclosed.
Facebook Watch has appeared to struggle to make a strong impact in the digital video space since its August launch, even as Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg has said his company may spend up to $1 billion on original video programming. The addition of high-profile shows from CBS may help to boost Watch's profile overall, especially among younger audiences with alternative TV-viewing habits. Clips form late night shows also attract large audiences and a lot of ad dollars on Google's YouTube, which Facebook Watch wants to directly compete with.
One of the reported issues with Watch is that the tab itself doesn't attract traffic organically, and that many views are instead drawn from Facebook's core News Feed. Revenue-sharing negotiations between Facebook and content creators like CBS might be another hindrance to getting more shows on the platform. Major media companies generally want to handle their own ad sales, which works against what Watch has to offer, as Facebook would manage that task. Facebook is considering raising the share of ad sales that Watch creators receive from 55% to a rate that's closer to other video services, a person familiar with the negotiations previously told Ad Age.
There's a lot at stake as digital video ad sales outpace overall digital market growth. U.S. digital video ad spending rose 36% to $5.2 billion in the first half of 2017 from a year earlier, while overall digital ad revenue increased 23% to $40 billion, the Interactive Advertising Bureau said. Facebook additionally faces competition from Apple, Amazon, YouTube, Twitter and Snapchat, which are all similarly seeking TV-like programming that appeals to younger generations who often favor mobile and digital entertainment over traditional channel.