With rising unhappiness among advertisers and ad agencies with Facebook’s measurements and its resistance to third-party verification (see list below), Facebook blinked. It now says it will commit to an outside audit to verify data accuracy.
“We are committing to an audit by the Media Rating Council (MRC) to verify the accuracy of the information we deliver to our partners.” — Facebook Newsroom
The MRC is an independent group that accredits companies such as Nielsen and ComScore for its ratings measurements and isn’t afraid to pull its accreditation if research methodologies don’t meet its standards.
Here’s what FB has pledged to do over the next year:
More Impression-Level Data
Facebook says it now has deals with 24 verification partners globally and that it will provide more detailed information about ad impressions on Facebook and Instagram. In addition, it will start providing specific in-view and duration data for display ads, including:
- Milliseconds that an ad was on the screen
- Milliseconds that 50% of the ad was on the screen
- Milliseconds that 100% of the ad was on the screen
New Choices For Video Buying
Facebook also will create different layers for video buying. There’s been so much debate about when is a video view a view and when does it create value for an advertiser? The second it’s on the screen, several seconds, or a completed view? Or anywhere in between? With the sound on or off?
Facebook contends that the moment a video comes onto a person’s screen, it creates value. But they admit not everyone agrees. So Facebook has pledged that later this year, it will provide more choice for advertisers with three new buying options for video ads across Facebook, Instagram and Audience Network:
- Completed-view buying: advertisers will only pay for video ads that have been viewed in their entirety, for any duration up to 10 seconds.
- Two-second buying: compliant with the MRC video standard, where at least 50% of an ad’s pixels are in-view for two continuous seconds or longer.
- Sound-on buying: advertisers will have the ability to buy sound-on video ads
“The list below”
- It was bad enough when Facebook said it over-reported video views on its social media platform by as much as 80%. Now this: A change in the way video streams are measured, Australian website Mumbrella reports, has FB video numbers dropping off a cliff.LINK: Facebook video views drop 94% in wake of Nielsen “recalibration” — per Mumbrella
- Drew Heuning is the director of digital ad buying for Omnicom, one of the world’s four largest ad buying agencies. Speaking at a conference, Huening said “Facebook ads are far less viewable than people were expecting.”LINK: Facebook ads are “far less viewable” than expected
- Facebook admitting that they have overestimated average time spent watching ads by between 60–80%… for about two years now.LINK: Facebook has been providing inflated video metrics for the past two years
- Here we go again: Facebook estimates “bug” overstated unique reach by 55%LINK: Here we go again: Facebook estimates “bug” overstated unique reach by 55%
- Marc Pritchard says P&G will no longer pay for any digital ads, ad tech, or suppliers that don’t agree to play by P&G’s rules. “It’s going to stop unless you get validated, accredited third-party verification,” Pritchard said. Both Google and Facebook self-report data, and neither has full accreditation for all of its digital ad products.LINK: World’s largest advertiser tells digital agencies to fix the problems or else