Facebook uses GRP-based video ad sales to pull TV spends to mobile

Even as mobile is making a play for traditional TV audiences, comes the news that Facebook is making a play to pull TV ad spends to mobile by launching a new product that allows media buyers to buy Facebook video ads by using the age-old system of GRPs (Gross Rating Points).

Of the 990 million mobile phones sold in India so far, around 160 million are being used by their owners to access mobile internet. So there is obviously an increasing number of younger audiences consuming entertainment and other content on the go, at their convenience, in their privacy and on their own personal mobile devices.

And this number of 160 million smartphones is rivaling the number of traditional TV households, which stand only marginally higher at 165-170 million today. How many months or at the most, quarters, before mobile-internet-active smartphones outnumber television sets in India is anybody’s guess.

Before we get into the specifics of the Facebook offering, let’s look at the nature of the growing mobile audiences.

We know that digitally active audiences are on mobile devices. These audiences, by virtue of owning smart phones and being tech savvy enough to use them for mobile internet and other uses, are definitely younger and more premium than the average TV audience. And while a television in a home will have an average of 4 viewers, each smart phone will have only one ‘viewer’, because it is primarily the privacy, mobility and convenience which draws the younger, enabled and aspirational audiences to the mobile. And as the numbers of the mobile audiences grow, we know the bucket that will deplete, however slowly but surely – that of primarily television audiences.

This means that today’s marketers would have to discount — by whatever the number-crunchers recommend — the total time spent on watching television on television, and perhaps, however marginally, even the average number of people in a TV-viewing home who are already making mobile their primary and the television their secondary device.

Facebook’s new offering hinges on GRP-based video ad sales and the belief that when as compared to TV, its video ads will deliver better audiences more economically and effectively, from the same target group

OK, now about the Facebook offering.

Since February, Facebook has seen a 25% growth in the number of active advertisers on Facebook. With 2.5 million advertisers now using the platform, people and businesses continue to connect through Facebook, and increasingly, these connections are happening on mobile devices.

As people spend more time on their phones, Facebook has been working to build the tools advertisers need to reach people with relevant content on mobile and effectively measure the impact of their mobile campaigns, and at Advertising Week in New York, the company shared four updates on what it has been building to help advertisers capitalize on mobile and give people a better ads experience.

TRP Buying: A familiar way for TV buyers to plan, buy and measure on Facebook

TV has long been one of the best platforms for marketers to build their brands. And new Facebook-commissioned custom research conducted by Nielsen shows that boosting TV campaigns with Facebook video ads drives incremental reach, increases efficiency and improves effectiveness.

  • Incremental Target Audience Reached: Measured across 42 US campaigns, when TV and Facebook were combined, advertisers saw a 19% increase in targeted reach versus TV alone. When Millennials were the target audience, incremental reach increased to 37%.
  • Efficiency: Across the same 42 campaigns, Facebook impressions were two times more likely to hit their target audience than TV impressions. This means advertisers spent less to reach their target audiences.
  • Effectiveness: A study by Nielsen of seven recent campaigns showed that, compared to people who saw TV alone, people exposed to both TV and Facebook demonstrated a 3.2 percentage point increase in ad memorability, 11.5 percentage point increase in brand linkage and a 22.7 percentage point increase in likeability linkage.

Knowing that TV and Facebook complement each other, Facebook is introducing a way for advertisers to plan, buy and measure Facebook video ads using total rating point (TRP) as the metric. Marketers can plan a campaign across TV and Facebook with a total TRP target in mind, and they can buy a share of those TRPs directly with Facebook. Then, Nielsen’s Digital Ad Ratings measurement system can verify Facebook’s in-target TRP delivery, and Nielsen’s Total Ad Ratings system can verify the TRP delivery for Facebook and television combined.

Taking ‘attention’ and ‘reach’ into account, Brand awareness optimization is designed to help advertisers find the audiences most likely to recall their ads

Brand Awareness Optimization: Helping brand advertisers focus on metrics that matter

Ads typically fall into one of two categories — brand awareness or direct response (DR) — each of which has different objectives. While Facebook has had several optimization capabilities for campaigns with a DR objective, like online conversion or app installs, historically it has offered fewer options for brand campaigns. That’s changing now with Facebook’s new brand awareness optimization bidding.

Brand awareness optimization is designed to help advertisers find the audiences most likely to recall their ads. It takes two primary factors into account: attention and reach. Facebook says it has found that when it comes to brand awareness, it’s not just how many people you reach that matters — it’s also crucial to break through and earn people’s attention. By analyzing hundreds of brand campaigns the company found that the longer someone spends with an ad, the more likely they are to remember what they’ve seen.

Brand awareness optimization will be available when buying in the Ads auction, as well as through the Reach and Frequency tool in Power Editor. It will be available on Facebook and Instagram this October as a limited release, with full availability in the coming months.

Facebook is also partnering with Millward Brown Digital on brand lift insights for Facebook and Instagram, allowing advertisers to conduct mobile polling on both platforms


Mobile Polling — The belief is: your campaigns are mobile; your measurement should be too

To help brand advertisers understand the impact of their mobile campaigns, Facebook launched mobile polling earlier this year in collaboration with Nielsen. On the weekend, Facebook announced that it is also partnering with Millward Brown Digital on brand lift insights for Facebook and Instagram, allowing advertisers to conduct mobile polling on both platforms.

The experimental design methodology mobile polling relies on means marketers can clearly observe the changes in brand metrics caused by their campaigns

Conducting mobile polls for mobile campaigns allows advertisers to measure campaign effectiveness in the same place the campaign’s messages are being delivered, making the measurements more representative and accurate. Polling also relies on experimental design methodology, which means marketers can clearly observe the changes in brand metrics caused by their campaigns. Mobile polling is available through Nielsen or Millward Brown.


Video in the carousel format: An engaging ad format gets even better

Last year, the carousel format for Facebook was launched, which gives advertisers more creative real estate in News Feed to showcase their products and drive actions like app installs and website visits. Carousel ads have proven to be good storytelling tools for brand marketers, and on the weekend, Facebook announced the ability to add video to the carousel format.

Pairing video with the carousel format gives marketers more options for compelling storytelling in News Feed. For instance:

  • An auto dealership can use a nationally branded video for a new car model followed by regional car promotions
  • A retailer can show a video promoting a new line of sportswear followed by images of featured products
  • A CPG company can use a nationally branded video for a new food item, followed by images of various meal preparations

Video in the Carousel format will begin rolling out this week in Power Editor, and will expand to the Ads Create Tool in the coming weeks.


GRPs explained:

  • A media planning, buying and measurement standard since the 1950s, GRPs have continued to be used across other traditional advertising media like print, radio and out of home. GRPs help the effectiveness or return of different media buys through a measurement of an ad campaign’s reach and frequency in the target audience of the advertiser.
  • GRPs adds up the sum total of all the Rating Points – which is one per cent of the potential target audience — garnered during an ad campaign. If 35 percent of all the targeted TV sets are tuned to a program your commercial plays out in, then you have garnered 35 Rating Points. And if next when the show in playing out your spot is watched by a total of 40 percent, then it has a total of 75%. As a Gross total of the rating points, there is a double-, even multiple counting of the audience; so your GRP for a campaign can exceed 100 percent too.
  • GRPs apply to other media too, eg, OOH. Say there’s an Amazon hoarding past which around 9 percent of your target population drives twice every working day for 2 months (ie 50 days, roughly), then the GRPs = 9 x 2 x 50 = 900
  • As part of planning a campaign, media planners calculate the total reach and frequency of a campaign, along with the GRPs. This is to help them in their objective of getting the maximum possible GRPs at the smallest possible cost, without shifting their focus from the target market. With a Reach x Frequency calculation, they arrive at the GRPs of the campaign to evaluate how effectively and economically you reached your target audience.


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