Snap partners with Moat to launch video advertising viewability score for Snapchat ads

Snap Inc. has begun to offer a video advertising viewability score for selected advertisers. Validated by attention analytics firm Moat, the new score has been designed to meet Media Rating Council (MRC) guidelines on viewability. It will be fully launched on June 5.

Although Snapchat isn’t being directly audited by the MRC, Moat is, which means that viewability scores should adhere to a more refined definition of what ‘interaction’ and ‘viewable’ mean.

According to the MRC Viewable Ad Impression Measurement Guidelines, at least 50% of video ad pixels should be viewable. In addition, the guide states:

“To qualify for counting as a viewable video ad impression, it is required that 2 continuous seconds of the video advertisement is played, meeting the same Pixel Requirement necessary for a viewable display ad. This required time is not necessarily the first 2 seconds of the video ad; any unduplicated content of the ad comprising 2 continuous seconds qualifies in this regard.”

However, the MRC adds that strong consumer interaction with an ad can be considered a proxy for viewability. Video advertising requirements further include that mobile video ads must render before viewability can be measured. It should be mentioned though that none of the MRC guidelines are strict, which means that advertisers who do not adhere to them aren’t being punished. The MRC offers guidelines which hopefully can be adopted by all marketers so that viewability of mobile and desktops adverts can become a better understood metric.

Jonah Goodhart, CEO of Moat explains:

“We’re proud to play a key role in measuring industry standards for viewability along with helping marketers discover the key metrics that correlate to business outcomes. In this case, MRC’s interaction-based viewability standard along with its duration-based standard tell an important story on Snapchat for marketers in the mobile age.”

Interestingly, a survey by Integral Ad Science, found that viewability measurements have a long way to go with suppliers and buyers disagreeing on the MRC guidelines.

In addition, Google’s Global State of Play report found that video advertising viewability rates varied significantly between countries. The Netherlands showed some of the highest rates of video ads in view at 81%. Only the UK and US improved their viewability levels between 2015 and 2016. Generally, tablet devices were found to show a higher percentage of ads in view than mobile and desktop devices.

Interestingly, according to research by Millward Brown, shorter impressions of Snap Ads  (< 2 seconds) tend to perform better, hiking ad awareness by up to 60% compared to impressions that are longer than two seconds.

Imran Khan, Chief Strategy Officer of Snapchat, adds:

“Advertisers are asking for a clear definition of a video view. We are partnering with Moat to bring standard viewability measurement to Snapchat, and support Moat as they move the industry forward by delivering a new metric that measures sight, sound and motion of a video.”