What is CPV for Facebook Video Ads

January 6, 2023

What is CPV for Facebook Video Ads | AIA Book in a free 30 minute strategy session

Of all the tools available in digital marketing, video routinely generates the best results. If a picture is worth a thousand words, then moving pictures obviously have an increased value, and many marketers jump at the opportunity to use this kind of medium in their campaigns, especially social media.

It’s estimated that around 45% of Facebook audience members watch around an hour of video content per week, and Forbes says that around half a billion people tune in for videos on the platform daily.

Video ads are definitely worth the effort, but when it comes to Facebook ads, there is one bidding option that may leave people confused: the CPV.


What Is It?

CPV stands for “cost-per-view,” which means you will have to pay Facebook for your video ad based on the number of views you get.

As with Facebook’s other bidding strategies, by choosing the CPV on, you also tell Facebook to prioritise showing your ads to people who are:

  1. Most likely to engage with video content and
  2. Likely to engage with your content.

CPV is an important bidding strategy if your goal is to ultimately get more views for your videos. And while this type of content is actively endorsed and encouraged by Facebook, you don’t have to worry about paying for those users who’ve only watched around 1 second of your video – which means they never really engaged with it in the first place.

The CPV bidding option allows you to buy 15-second views, or near the video’s completion if it’s shorter than 15 seconds, and option that is also referred to as a “Thru Play.” As a result, it will only charge after the user has watched enough seconds of the video to count as an engaged user. If your video is shorter than 15 seconds, you’ll only be charged if the user has watched until almost the end. Replays aren’t charged at all, so if a user really likes your video, they want to replay it as much as they like without it affecting your budget.

Is It the Best Option?

So, who benefits from this bidding option? Or, in other words, is it the best bidding strategy for all types of videos?

Not quite. When you’re considering bidding options, it’s best to take a look at what your goals are, instead of what medium you use to promote your message or brand. CPV bidding is the optimal method of bidding when video views length is an important metric you want to track. When you want to see the success of your video content, you, of course, check how many people watched a particular video, and for how long. CPV bidding allows you to do just that in your video ads.

But what if your Facebook video ads are just a way to reach more people, raise brand awareness, or generate more leads and possibly convert them? Well, in this case, the CPV bidding isn’t the optimal choice.

Let’s say you want to generate more sales for a particular product, and you use a video to promote it. In the video, you may have a short tutorial and presentation of the product to show it in action. Since your goal is to generate more sales, meaning to get people to viding the product page and buy, paying Facebook per video views is a bad strategy.

A person watching the video for a few seconds isn’t the same with a person clicking on the link. Your video may be very interesting and get people to engage, but at the same time, those viewers may not go to the next step and place an order. As a result, why should you pay per view if your goal is to get more sales? In this case, you’d be better off with a CPA (cost per action) bidding type, and be charged when a user performed a specific action.

Choosing the Goal

Before you create an ad, video or otherwise, you have to first consider what your business goals are. The goal essentially mirrors the end result you want to achieve.

Then, if you want to use video as the type of content to include in your ads, you need to check if the video ad format is available for the specific goal. Here’s a list of possible goals that support video on Facebook:

  • Reach;
  • Brand awareness;
  • App installs;
  • Traffic;
  • Engagement;
  • Lead generation;
  • Conversions;
  • Video views.

So if your business goals match these available Facebook goals, then you can use single-video in your ads.

Choosing the goal will also help Facebook optimise how it will deliver your ads. Since it knows how its users behave, it can show your ads to those people most likely to help you reach your goals. If you’re looking for more app installs, then Facebook will prioritise those users most likely to download an app through Facebook, or users on mobile.

The wrong objective can mean the ads are not delivering properly.

Facebook Video Metrics

No matter what your objective is with the video ad, there are a variety of metrics available you should look into to see how your Facebook video ads are performing. This will even give you the opportunity to improve your videos and create better ads.

Here are some of the metrics available:

  • 2-second continuous video views – how many times the video was watched for 2 continuous seconds or more;
  • Cost per 2-second continuous video view – how much those views value for the ad cost;
  • 3-second continuous video views – how many times the video was watched for 2 continuous seconds or more;
  • Cost per 3-second continuous video view – how much those views cost;
  • Thruplays – the metric that matches the bidding strategy;
  • Reach – how many people the ad was shown to;
  • Ad spend – how much money the ad or campaign cost;
  • Video plays – how many times the video starts to play, counted for each impression of a video, without replays;
  • Video watched at 25%;
  • Video watched at 50%;
  • Video watched at 75%;
  • Video watched at 95%;
  • Video watched at 100%.
  • Video watch average time.

For example, if you go to your Ads Manager and see that your video ad was mostly watched only 25% to completion, it means that specific video is not engaging. Either your audience is looking for shorter videos and disconnect, or the content needs more work to get people to watch. Either way, these metrics can let you know how your video ads are performing in real-time.

Wrapping up

Video ads can be a very powerful tool, but a few moving pictures on a musical background does not a lead-generating video make. It’s important to consider these following things before you start looking for a video team:

  • Is video the best medium to express yourself?
  • Do you have the resources to create high-quality videos?
  • Do you know what kind of video your audience likes?

When it’s good, video can successfully engage audiences and reach your goal. But to be good, it needs to bring some value, both for your brand and those watching it.

If you need a hand in creating lead-generating video Facebook advertising strategies, Australian Internet Advertising is here waiting for your call now.

Billy P.

About The Author

William Polson founded Australian Internet Advertising in 2013 and has over 12 years of experience immersed in Digital Marketing.

With an in-depth level of digital marketing knowledge, William has been sort after by and worked for, many large national brands including Subaru, Blooms The Chemist, and Nova 96.9.

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