Facebook is announcing another heap of measurement updates as it looks to prove to advertisers that spending on its apps and websites will drive business results.
Among the changes are the introduction of a marketing mix modeling portal and the expansion of Facebook’s partnerships with third-party measurement firms.
The marketing mix modeling portal will attempt to help marketers compare how their Facebook ads are performing versus ads on TV, print, outdoor and other digital platforms.
The information will be drawn from measurement partners including Nielsen, Neustar MarketShare, Analytics Partners, and Marketing Evolution – partnerships previously announced in September.
Jonathan Lewis, Facebook product manager, told Business Insider: “We found in our discussions [with marketers] the biggest challenge they face in doing modeling is getting good data. [We will] give it out through this portal and we don’t see the reports back, necessarily, unless the marketer chooses to share it.”
Facebook is also adding a new partner to its third-party verification program. DoubleVerify brings the number of Facebook’s independent measurement partners up to 24. In addition, Facebook is making four updates to its existing measurement partnerships (which you can read in full below).
Lewis said: “[These announcements] really represent a broad investment we have been making in the past couple of years to enable more transparency and more choice in the measurement partners that our advertising customers can use.”
Over the past couple of years, Facebook has been hit with criticism from the advertising community for “marking its own homework,” with some ad execs expressing their concerns that they couldn’t use the measurement partners of their choice to vet the data that the social network gives them.
But over the last few months in particular, Facebook has been accelerating its measurement rollouts. In November, the company created a Measurement Council so it can get feedback from executives from the measurement industry about what it can improve on.
Towards the end of last year, Facebook also announced it had made a series of errors that had caused it to overstate or understate the metrics publishers and advertisers use to measure the effectiveness of their activity on the platform.
In November, it created a blog called Metrics FYI to disclose any errors and bugs, which on Tuesday being rebranded Measurement FYI to reflect the investments it has made to provide marketers with data on how Facebook effects their top line, as opposed to just providing social metrics that can’t necessarily be equated to business results.
Nate Elliott, an independent marketing and technology advisor (and the former Forrester analyst who used to cover Facebook) released a report on Monday showing that almost 90% of Facebook’s published case studies highlight business outcomes.
Elliott said: “It’s great to see that Facebook understands what metrics really matter to brands. But it would be much better if they could get those meaningful metrics in front of the rank-and-file. When you look at their own case studies, it’s clear Facebook knows the engagement metrics that dominate their dashboards simply aren’t the most important data for marketers to measure.”
Facebook’s latest measurement update comes ahead of the company’s fourth-quarter earnings announcement on Wednesday. Social media rival Snapchat – which has also been moving quickly to roll out measurement and targeting options for advertisers – is expected to list its shares on the New York Stock Exchange this week.
Facebook’s additional measurement updates:
Nielsen’s Digital Ad Ratings product will be extended to eight new markets. comScore verification will soon include “in-target reach” on desktop and mobile (measuring how many of an advertiser’s desired audience was reached in a campaign). comScore and Integral Ad Science can now be used to measure video viewability on the Facebook Audience Network. Facebook has completed its rollout of comScore, Integral Ad Science, and Moat display ad viewability metrics.