At the start of 2015, it became official; Facebook Video is now bigger than YouTube. In just a matter of months, the number of videos uploaded natively to Facebook has now completely overtaken the amount uploaded directly to YouTube.
Although that's almost unbelievable, if you’ve scrolled through Facebook lately it will come as no real surprise; as Newsfeeds are flooded with cute animal clips and hilarious ‘fail’ videos, each with thousands of views, comments and shares underneath.
The rapid momentum of Facebook video is both exciting and challenging for digital marketers because, although it offers a whole new opportunity for high levels of brand reach and engagement, it’s also a whole new tool to master.
So if you’re new to the world of Facebook video marketing, here are five easy to use tips for getting started.
1. Be shareable
If there was an exact definition of ‘shareable’ every brand in the world would excel at content marketing, but unfortunately the nature of it is pretty difficult to pinpoint.
In my experience, something is more shareable when it relates to a very specifically targeted audience. I manage content for a courier comparison company called NI Parcels and recently created a Facebook video about Northern Irish speech and colloquialisms.
Although that won’t resonate with everyone in the world, the content was so specific to the Northern Irish audience that it racked up an organic reach of almost one million in just three days. It was shared almost 10,000 times because the audience viewed it like an ‘in joke’ that they wanted to spread to others who would get it.
2. Be yourself
By this I mean, use your own content. Creating your own videos means that you will avoid copyright issues, and your video is likely to be more creatively original. If you see a video that would be perfect for your audience, share it from the page it originated on - don’t upload it yourself and claim it as your own. It will still get just as much interaction.
Although professionally made videos will look sleeker, don’t be afraid to experiment with making your own.
3. Looks matter
Facebook videos have an autoplay function which is muted. If you want sound, you have to click into the post. Therefore, most people view Facebook videos with no sound, which means the visual has to say it all. If you’re relying on sound or narration to tell the story, your video will have much less viral potential.
4. Include a call-to-action
There is no point getting tons of interaction on a video if it does nothing for your brand. Include a logo or a strong brand message in your video or in the headline text. Facebook also gives you the option to place a call-to-action at the end of your video saying ‘Learn More’ or ‘Book Now’ etc, with a link leading to a landing page of your choice. Without this, it’s just content - not content marketing.
A good video will gain interaction organically, but a little bit of Facebook advertising spend could give it a push and help land it at the feet of your target audience. However, if you upload a video and it has zero reach, comments, likes or shares, don’t spend a fortune on Facebook ads. You can’t buy shareability. Sure, it might gain you a handful of interactions, but it won’t go viral this way. That has to happen naturally.