Person looking at facebook video

Press Play: Streamlining Video Insights With Facebook’s New Update

As champions of video for driving business performance, Facebook recently rolled out a few key updates to how video metrics are defined on the platform. At iProspect, we’re excited for a more transparent, simplified way of looking at video metrics. We know that consumer behavior and preferences vary, and looking at so many different video metrics makes it hard to know what’s really driving business performance. Typically, it isn’t overly insightful or actionable to focus on so many metrics.

Although we recommend using some kind of motion in most creative across all business objectives, we typically see full video as creative meant to drive brand metrics like awareness, favorability and intent. We recommend platform-provided or third-party brand studies for measuring performance whenever possible to our clients. When that isn’t an option, we suggest focusing on fewer, more clear metrics is ideal for optimal performance; this update provides just that.

Deriving meaningful insights from your video campaigns just got a little more precise.

So, what’s being updated?

"Video Plays” Metric: Because of factors like network, user behavior, and someone’s individual settings, videos don’t necessarily auto-play all the time. This new metric will allow advertisers to differentiate between an impression and a true video play.

Refresh of “Video Views” Definitions: Previously, any “play” within a video counted towards the 3- or 10-Second Video View – including if a user rewound or skipped around the video. With this update, only unrepeated, continuous seconds of video watched will count toward these metrics, making these metrics more linear in how user video consumption is assessed. 

Doing Away With “30-Second Video View” And “Video Percentage Watched” Metrics: The 30-Second Video View metric, which has proven less important to many advertisers, is being replaced by Video Average Watch Time, which aims to give a more holistic picture of how far into video content a user got through. Facebook is also sun setting the Video Percentage Watched metric. Instead, advertisers can use the Video Average Watch Time metric to calculate this percentage – streamlining the values Facebook includes in reporting.


What does this mean For Marketers like myself?

  • A dedicated Video Plays metric means more meaningful insights. With the focus of this metric being on true, linear viewing, advertisers will have a clearer picture of how their video content is being consumed in the feed. The difference between a true video view and an impression will now be much more black and white.
  • Refreshed metrics definitions will now streamline the way advertisers look at video performance, which will have a more impactful meaning –previously, these views could count views all over the video (including rewinds, skips, etc.); now advertisers can better understand duration metrics, which will help inform video content development.
  • The sunsetting of two video metrics streamlines data for advertisers, especially when these metrics are redundant. This could also be Facebook’s way of moving away from a specific completion-proxy metric like the 30-Second Video View; instead, this update could be a shift into helping advertisers understand the user journey within the video via the “Video Average Watch Time” metric (though video average watch time can still be manually calculated). 

(We do want to note that for entertainment brands or others whose primary objective as an organization is to produce and distribute video content, we understand there are different implications for the deprecation of the 30-second view.)


What Should I do next? 

Make sure you or your agency team are updating reporting accordingly, and that there’s agreed upon within-campaign optimization metrics. Use these new metrics and see how they’re evolving insights about video. Here’s to hoping these updates take your video campaign learnings from black and white into full on technicolor.