Facebook’s Martin Harbech reveals five secrets to making the most of the festive period on the small screen.

The final countdown to Christmas is on, and ad campaigns are in full flow.

The brilliance of many of them is a result of significant investment.

With even the humblest ad during this period coming at a big cost for the advertiser, brands need to extract every ounce of value from the money spent.

According to Cisco, in three years, 75% of mobile data traffic will be video, compared with just over half today.

We see more than 100 million hours of video watched on Facebook every day, so optimising ads for the small screen has never been more crucial.

Mobile video is driving the fastest growing platforms in the history of Facebook and is therefore key to winning the feed this Christmas.

Instagram Stories now has 300 million active users every day and time spent watching content on the platform is up 80% from last year.

“Mobile video is driving the fastest growing platforms in the history of Facebook and is therefore key to winning the feed this Christmas”

Highly personal, small-format mobile devices draw people in by design and, as a result, make us pay more attention to the content we consume.

It’s the perfect accompaniment to TV ads, and allows brands to not only reinforce messaging, but also to engage audiences in entirely new ways.

Panic Saturday (December 23) and Christmas Eve are big opportunities for capturing the attention of last-minute shoppers.

And while not everyone has the budget or resources to shoot for mobile, it’s still not too late to make mobile-ready creative with a few simple tweaks.

Here are my top tips to supercharging your Christmas creative for mobile:

1 When it comes to the feed, more is more

The more creative options you have, the bigger the opportunity you have to experiment, iterate and optimise.

And the great thing is, Facebook doesn’t penalise you for trying multiple approaches.

In fact, we reward it.

When running multiple versions of the same creative, videos that deliver the best results will be prioritised to ensure a more efficient campaign delivery.

2 Re-cut and target for audience segments

You can use Facebook to create different content packages for different audiences.

Not everyone will respond in the same way to the same footage so find out what video works better for men versus women, young people versus old, for example.

3 Adapt, adapt, adapt

How do you tell a 30-second story in 15 seconds without cutting any footage?

Consider your TV ads as a collection of assets rather than a narrative arc.

Cut your standard wide screen (16:9) footage into tiles, reassemble it into a vertical video and run multiple tiles simultaneously to tell the full story.

This alternative approach makes the most of the space available on mobile.

4 Performance ads

You don’t actually need video content to create video on Facebook.

Take a series of still images and add simple motion graphics to create eye-catching visual effects.

Use the first few seconds to bring your brand in focus and highlight key product benefits.

5 Use Facebook Marketing Partners

Facebook Marketing Partners specialise in creative platforms and personalisation.

Their high-tech tools and smart solutions can be used to prepare existing assets for mobile devices and targeting data is used to deliver different iterations of content to different audiences.

Martin harbech facebook

For more information on how to optimise your use of mobile this Christmas visit our dedicated Christmas Clinic.

Martin Harbech, director of commerce, Facebook