It’s been a busy week for Facebook, announcing some big changes at their f8 conference for an updated App & Anonymous Login feature and their new Audience Network that’s just around the corner, but this new announcement on an expanded Video Metrics feature seems to me to be squarely aimed at grabbing more video uploads at the expense of YouTube.
Facebook have been trying to get people to upload more video to their platform for a while, and up to now one of the major benefits they’ve implemented is the fact that videos uploaded to your Facebook page will automatically start playing in the user’s newsfeed as they scroll.
This has been a bonus over simply linking to a YouTube video because the autoplay video catches the eye of the viewer as they scroll and is much more likely to get further interaction, rather than the YouTube video which is a static link that needs to be clicked.
Although this is a great bonus the main issue so far has been Facebook’s woeful stats that are available for your video uploads – How do we know what’s working and what’s not doing so well?
Currently the only insights and stats you get for your videos on Facebook are how many people have started watching your video, which is really poor in comparison to the wealth of stats you get from YouTube.
But this is all about to change…
FB have announced that they’re going to be rolling out a bunch of new stats over the coming weeks to allow you to further delve into how well your videos are performing, and these stats are going to include: video views, unique video views, average duration of the video watched, and audience retention.
Facebook define a video view as the number of people who have watched at least 3 seconds, and this includes people who have seen the autoplayed vids in their newsfeeds. FB also has a new stat which will show you how many people viewed your video to 95% of the total video length, which is good because it will allow us to see how many people are watching pretty much through to the end.
In addition to these stats there are a couple of really interesting ones coming along, the first is Audience Retention which shows you a chart of how far viewers are watching into the video, which is great for identifying when people are losing interest and clicking away.
The second is if you’re using video in your ads (which is currently only open to a select few marketing partners), as they will now start to show you the data breakdown of how certain audiences and demographics interacted with your video, so if you’ve targeted a specific demographic then you’ll be able to see the results for your video against that segment.
By providing these new stats Facebook are banking on people uploading more content, and more crucially start to use the video ads feature when it gets rolled out to all advertisers further down the line, both of which will ultimately lead to more revenue for FB.