We’re barely into the second quarter of 2016, but online video is already on track for another record-breaking year. The industry continues with platforms making large investments into native video offerings. One of the largest platforms to carve out its niche is Facebook.
Facebook has become such a large video destination that you can now read countless articles about how Facebook is a YouTube killer. We won’t focus on that, but we will say that these two platforms are different from one another and offer unique capabilities for publishers that have an audience on both platforms.
This article points out some of the benefits to using Facebook video natively, and encourages you to integrate Facebook into a video marketing strategy. With that in mind, here are 5 tips for using Facebook video like a marketing pro.
1. Think Social
Probably the biggest advantage of using Facebook video is its interactive capability. Facebook was built on social interaction. It’s a place where users share their social status, updates, and tags with their community. Adding video to this mix is just an extension of everything else that Facebook already offers.
Marketers need to approach Facebook video with all of these social capabilities in mind. Think about what is going to make your audience like, share, and comment. What are the subjects that matter most to your audience?
One way to drive interaction is creating video content around a question or challenge in your industry. In the example to the right, see how the video publisher included a question on top of the visuals early on in the video.
Not only does this approach capture the viewer in the first few seconds, but it also takes advantage of Facebook’s auto-play feature, which automatically plays videos in your feed by default. Sound is turned off, so eye-popping and attention-grabbing visuals are crucial for strong viewership on Facebook.
BuzzFeed Video is a golden child when it comes to catching attention with Facebook’s auto-play feature. Check out its page for inspiration on how you can apply this method to your own Facebook videos.
2. Get to Know the Platform
As with any social media channel or marketing tool, publishers should understand the ins and outs of Facebook. Marketers should take note of all of the noise that is going on around the video in a newsfeed. Facebook offers a mix of content including photos, videos, ads, pages, friend activity, and more.
It can often be overwhelming and is a huge reason why some of the top video publishers on Facebook are keeping their content short. Casey Neistat is one of the best known video bloggers and influencers on YouTube. His YouTube videos generate millions of views and a ton of engagement. He’s a filmmaker by trade, so his videos often contain high-quality imagery.
Take a look at his page and you’ll see that even Casey takes a shorter approach when it comes to Facebook videos. While most of his videos range from six to eight minutes on YouTube, his Facebook videos come in between one to two minutes.
This, in large part, is due to the amount of other content a viewer can be presented with when watching a video on a Facebook. Your audience’s attention span is short on Facebook as it is not a video-first platform. The big takeaway is to start thinking about creating concise snackable videos for Facebook.
3. Get Technical
Along the same lines as the tip above, marketers should get to know some of the technical options and features when it comes to uploading videos natively to Facebook. One of the most appealing features is the call-to-action button that you can include when uploading videos to your business page. Get a step-by-step process for adding this option by visiting the Facebook help page.
In a nutshell, this feature allows your to present a range of calls-to-action to viewers when they reach the end of a video. This includes everything from a Shop Now to a Watch More button.
These are great tools to drive your audience along a content journey or buying process. The NBA does this by sending viewers back to a landing page on its website, where viewers can continue watching videos.
Additionally, Facebook gives you options such as tags, titles, custom thumbnails, and captions to add to your video during the upload. Take the time to populate all of these areas as doing so will help with search and discovery. Use the tags option to tag people within your video or associated with it.
The ALS campaign from 2014 is a great example of using tags to spread a message to the masses. Over 440 million people viewed the videos with no media spend whatsoever, according to Facebook.
4. Make Use Of Hashtags
Similar to many other social channels, Facebook embraces the use of hashtags within posts. According to Facebook, “Hashtags turn topics and phrases into clickable links in your posts on your personal Timeline or Page. This helps people find posts about topics they’re interested in.”
Try using these for industry events, tradeshows, and conferences. Oftentimes, there are hashtags created for those events and you can take advantage by adding your videos to a conversation already taking place. Intel took this a step further by promoting a hashtag within the video itself in the example here.
Its campaign allows the audience to post relevant content around that hashtag, which can get a conversation going.
5. Plan For What’s Ahead With Facebook Video
As you can see, Facebook has gone to great lengths to become a serious video hub. Marketers using this platform should try to stay up-to date-with the future video updates Facebook releases.
Live video streaming is one of those items. Until recently, this feature was only available to public figures and celebrities. Now, Facebook live video can be used by anyone, even brands. Keep this in mind if making a big industry announcement or releasing a new product. Going live on Facebook could be a great way to create a buzz and a sense of urgency when delivering the announcement. Viewers can join in with the social tools Facebook offers, such as reactions, likes, and comments.
Instagram is another interesting variable when it comes to Facebook video. Facebook owns Instagram and has recently experimented with allowing users to post one-minute videos to that platform. Without doubt, the integration between the two platforms will become seamless in the coming months.
Finally, Facebook’s advertising capabilities continue to lead the industry in social media. Expect more monetization and targeting features for video publishers in the future. This will be important for brands looking to create a revenue stream from video content.
And, of course, stay in the know with everything Facebook video-related by checking back for news and articles on OnlineVideo.net.