The value of a Facebook video view

The trend towards videos on social media has been upon us for a while now, with major social media platforms such as Facebook, Twitter and Instagram offering a space for videos to thrive.

Facebook has announced that it will display the number of views received by videos starting this week in Hong Kong and globally.

“With a public view count, marketers can quickly see how a video is performing and take note of what works and what doesn’t,” a Facebook spokesperson said.

The social media giant began experimenting with auto-play videos last September where videos are automatically played in users’ news feeds, which has been expanded to all Facebook videos in the US.

Auto-play will be rolled out in other countries that already have native videos over the coming weeks.

“After that, we will roll-out auto-play to countries that don’t currently have it on any videos on a country-by-country basis when performance and network connectivity improve in those countries,” the spokesperson said.

In June, Facebook improved its video rankings so that news feeds showed more videos that catered to the user’s preferences, increasing the likelihood that they would click on them.

Since June, it has received an average of over one billion video views on the platform per day, with video views growing by 50% globally from May to July this year compared to the same period last year.

But what counts as a video view especially if in the US, they are auto-played?

“Any video that plays for three or more seconds on Facebook, either on mobile or desktop, is considered a ‘view’,” the Facebook spokesperson said.

“If you have stayed on a video for at least three seconds, it signals to us that you are not simply scrolling through the news feed and you have shown intent to watch that video.”

The spokesperson adds that the advantage of auto-play is that videos start playing immediately as users scroll through their news feeds and gets them to watch videos that they otherwise may not have noticed.

Facebook says changes introduced to video on the platform has lowered the cost per view for brands by 60% but declined to share details on the methodology of how such a statistic was calculated.

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