It wasn’t so long ago that YouTube was the place to manage video content and host all your videos but now there is another significant and equally as strong player to consider. While there have been alternatives such as Vimeo to host all of your videos, Facebook has developed into a major platform – the social media site has made no secret of the fact that it has placed video at the forefront of it’s marketing and growth strategy and it now boasts some very impressive stats. At the end of last year, techcrunch.com reported that Facebook was achieving up to 8 billion video views each day – a 100% increase on figures from six months earlier. Facebook is also testing new platforms and apps to enhance video viewing on it’s site ranging from dedicated video feeds through to picture in picture viewing allowing viewers to watch the videos whilse still browsing their news feed.
While the stats are impressive its also clear that brands and companies are embracing Facebook as a serious channel for video content too. There has been a marked rise in companies hosting videos through the native Facebook video player rather than from a YouTube account meaning that there is a lot of trust and belief in the Facebook offering.
It is, however, important not to get carried away by the stats and the performance of Facebook. For example, Facebook counts a video ‘view’ as the first three seconds of any production and given that the videos have an autoplay setting its not necessarily a true reflection of meaningful views of a video. There are plenty of things to learn for Facebook too and its worth remembering that it is not a dedicated video channel like YouTube or Vimeo so it depends on what you are trying to achieve with your video strategy. The simple answer to this is, like with any marketing channels, to adopt an approach that embraces the benefits of each channel.
Facebook, it seems, is very much a ‘here today, gone tomorrow’ in that videos are soon passed by and generally not revisited compared to YouTube which is effectively an archive of your video content which can be searched for and found at any time. This is not something that is better or worse though – its just different user habits on different channels. Its better to use these insights to your benefit and look at what your videos are saying and how these facts can be taken advantage of. For example a 30 second advert with a quick and instant call to action might perform better on Facebook and YouTube. If your video marketing however has a longer term feel to it with messages that have a greater longevity to them then YouTube could well be the more appropriate platform.
Some examples of consumer facing Facebook accounts can be seen here with singer Katy Perry, Manchester United Football Club and Basketball player Kobe Bryant all utilising video to communicate updates to their fans and reaching viewing figures in the millions.
Video Marketing on Facebook
Looking at video marketing on Facebook there are few tips that may be useful to ensure you get the best out of this platform, we’ve outlined some here that might help.
Keep It Short
This generally is becoming the standard for videos across the board but in the case of Facebook it’s even more so. This is due to the nature of the channel, posts are scrolled through and users move on to the next thing in their news feed. Keeping the viewer’s attention span sometimes is as quick as how quickly they scroll down.
Its All About The Intro
There are a couple of things to consider here, firstly due to the scrolling habit of the users the first few seconds need to grab the attention enough to stop the viewer from scrolling down so it needs to be eyecatching. Secondly the autoplay feature mutes all videos unless they are clicked on so the first few seconds need to be visually compelling enough to catch the eye. Think about an interesting title screen or captions too as a possibility.
Get The Right Picture
If the video doesn’t play automatically there will still be a thumbnail image showing what the video is. Make sure that you choose a suitable picture that is eyecatching but also show what the video is about and at the very least compels the viewer to click on it to watch the video. Star Wars have used the popular image of the new droid from the movie, BB8 to appeal to their fans in the example below which has seen 15 million views in three days.
Get The Timing Right
If you can schedule your video post to go out at a certain time then this could be crucial. If you know when your target audience are most likely to be on Facebook then post the video at that time. It might sound obvious but it could be the difference between everyone seeing it or not. If you are targeting football fans for example, then posting something at 3pm on a Saturday afternoon is probably not the best time to put out a post as many will be at a game watching, not browsing social media.
These are just a few things to look at when posting video to Facebook, its not just about applying these and other tips to it though as it has to be what’s right for your audience, your business and the style and content of your video. As with any marketing strategy, when it comes to video marketing there cannot be a ‘one size fits all’ approach to video anymore and audiences, channels, demographics and more all need to be considered.
Contact us to see how we can help with your video marketing strategy and we’ll create the best content for your audience, aims and objectives.