Facebook continues to ramp up its original content with Watch, a platform introduced today for shows — a new type of shortform video on the social media juggernaut. Mark Zuckerberg’s company calls it a platform for all creators and publishers to find an audience, build a community of fans and earn money for their work.
In blog post today, Facebook VP Mwdia Partnerships Nick Grudin wrote: “As more and more people enjoy this experience, we’ve learned that people like the serendipity of discovering videos in News Feed, but they also want a dedicated place they can go to watch videos. That’s why last year we launched the Video tab in the U.S., which offered a predictable place to find videos on Facebook. Now we want to make it even easier to catch up with shows you love.”
The Watch platform is organized around what users’ friends and communities are watching, with sections like Most Talked About, which highlights shows that spark conversation; What’s Making People Laugh, which includes shows where many people have used the “Haha” reaction; and What Friends Are Watching, which helps users connect with friends about shows they too are following.
Facebook is introducing Watch to a limited group of people in the U.S. and plans to bring the experience to more people soon. Also, it will be open shows to a limited group of creators but plans to a public rollout after.
Here is an example of Facebook shows that the company believes “can be successful”:
Shows that engage fans and community. Nas Daily publishes a daily show where he makes videos together with his fans from around the world. The Watchlist makes it easy for fans to catch every day’s new episode.
Live shows that connect directly with fans. Gabby Bernstein, a New York Times bestselling author, motivational speaker, and life coach, uses a combination of recorded and live episodes to connect with her fans and answer questions in real time.
Shows that follow a narrative arc or have a consistent theme.Tastemade’s Kitchen Little is a funny show about kids who watch a how-to video of a recipe, then instruct professional chefs on how to make it. Each episode features a new child, a new chef, and a new recipe. Unsurprisingly, the food doesn’t always turn out as expected.
Live events that bring communities together. Major League Baseball is broadcasting a game a week on Facebook, enabling people to watch live baseball while connecting with friends and fellow fans on the platform.