You may scroll through something so fast on Facebook that you don’t notice it. But Facebook wants every moment to count at least in what it presents to advertisers.
The company announced Friday they will provide millisecond-level data for ads on Facebook, Instagram and its online ad ecosystem Audience Network.
Now, for the first time through Facebook, advertisers can see how long their ads were seen by the millisecond. That includes how many milliseconds overall the ad was on a screen and then broken out into how many milliseconds 100 percent of the ad was on the screen, as well as how many milliseconds 50 percent of it was on the screen.
It may seem small step (literally and figuratively), but it’s an important change in Facebook’s ongoing effort to regain trust from advertisers after some damning missteps over the past year, especially as it works to maintain its traditional ad models while also building for television. The company also presented three new buying options for video ads, including sound-on buying.
Last fall, a Wall Street Journal report revealed Facebook had long oversold a key metric in how it quantified video views. At first, Facebook downplayed the news. Upon further scrutiny and more digging into its data, Facebook found that it had made several more math errors.
“What I would tell you is we are not going to be perfect.”
“What I would tell you is we are not going to be perfect,” Carolyn Everson, Facebook’s VP of global market solutions, told Mashable last November. “What we are going to strive to be is as accurate as possible and fully committed to being transparent if we find things and certainly as we update our metrics.”
Facebook still charges based on full seconds, but this additional data could help marketers plan their creative.
It’s not just about what Facebook is presenting. Advertisers have been calling on Facebook to stop “grading it’s own homework.” That means offering additional data from third-party sources. Facebook has lined up 24 third-party partners, as Facebook emphasized in Friday’s blog post.
Facebook also has committed to an audit with the Media Rating Council, something else long-requested by advertisers.
The network is also presenting new buying options for video ads. Advertisers now can choose between completed-view buying, two-second buying and sound-on buying.
Completed-view and sound-on buying are important as Facebook tries to liken its product to television. But Facebook, unlike television, is not traditionally consumed with sound-on. More than 85 percent of Facebook video is watched without ads, according to Digiday report from last year.
That could change. Facebook is in talks with studios to create more original content for the network. This week, it hired Mina Lefevre, formerly executive vice president and head of scripted at MTV, as its as its new head of development.
Facebook is currently working several partners to test mid-rolls ads in videos.
These buying options will be available later this year, Facebook said.