How Facebook Can Get More Eyeballs for Your Videos

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Facebook is getting a lot of buzz for placing greater importance on video, and how that is taking viewers away from YouTube … Some of this buzz should worry YouTube some of it is just people wanting to be able to say they called it first. A brand that is serious about using video should have a strategy for how they will use YouTube and Facebook for their videos.

While YouTube is still the best  platform for social video, Facebook is another great way to share your company’s message to a wide audience. YouTube provides more long term discoverability because of the ability to search videos, video content is shared more often on Facebook than any other site.

Facebook in a recent said that the majority of Facebook users watch one video a day. (They didn’t provide any data as to how many of those were cat videos.) It would also be interesting to know how many of these videos are user generated and how many were created by brands.

While Facebook video may not be searchable like YouTube, Facebook does reach a very wide audience that Youtube doesn’t reach. Facebook has some features similar to YouTube’s, such as a video page that resembles YouTube channels and a featured video similar to YouTube’s channel trailer. You can also create playlists and schedule a video to launch on a specific day and time in the future.

My favorite Facebook video feature is that you can add a video call-to-action and invite viewers to a website to learn more, sign up, or make a purchase. YouTube has options in their annotations feature and now in their recently announced cards feature.

Facebook’s offering seems in line with the idea of viewers taking next steps after watching a video it also has more flexibility in the places you can link too.

Remember to take advantage of Facebook’s new video metrics to help you track the engagement of your videos. The social media site recently introduced several new features designed to “help you learn what’s resonating with people and determine how to create more effectively and promote your videos on Facebook”.

These new features give valuable information on duration of viewing and audience retention, revealing areas of success and areas where you could improve the catchiness of your video.

A great opportunity when posting a video on Facebook, you should tag the people who are in the video if that is appropriate. This will open up the video to more than your current followers. You can choose a thumbnail but currently you cannot upload one.

Facebook suggests making videos that connect with people from the first frame. Because videos automatically play on silent unless the user enables sound, videos that capture attention without sound do the best. Make an engaging title for your video, as the title is usually the first thing Facebook users will see when your video shows up in their news feed. The time and effort put into crafting a top-quality video won’t amount to exposure or sales if viewers are not drawn to click on the video in the first place. Make sure the title accurately sums up the video.

It is good to think about how long your company video should be on Facebook. Keep your video fairly short, totaling 1-2 minutes if possible. If there’s more you want your viewers to know, use a call to action to invite them to your companies website to watch more videos.

Also, remember to use your videos to promote your Facebook page, so users will continue to receive your company’s updates long after watching this one video.

If you want your page to show up in people’s Facebook feed, each of your videos should invite people to like your page and click the ‘get notifications’ box to make sure they receive updates.

It is also important to note that Facebook favors content uploaded directly to Facebook, so a video posted to Facebook will show up in someone’s feed before a video uploaded to YouTube and then linked to Facebook.

While Facebook is making such a big deal about video now, this won’t be the case forever. We have seen this happen with Google and YouTube. They offered some sort of great benefit to using video to get more people to use it more so they can ultimately sell more ads.

By the time most brands catch on it’s too late to take advantage of the opportunity because the video site is now putting a greater importance on something else. So early adopters will be rewarded with taking the risk of trusting their videos to Facebook.

How will your company start using video on Facebook to increase engagement?

Jayson Duncan

This monthly Social Media and Video column is contributed by Jayson Duncan. Jayson is an Orange County, California filmmaker and owner of the video production company Miller Farm Media. In 2003, Jayson began using video to help others tell their stories through his video production company, Miller Farm Media. He has created videos for Fortune 50 companies. In his spare time Jayson enjoys playing his guitar, song writing, and spending time with his wife, Gretchin.

Jayson Duncan
Jayson Duncan
Jayson Duncan

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