Why Facebook Video is the Key to 2017 Content Success

by Jay Selig, Marketing & PR Manager

Has anybody else noticed a change in their Facebook feed over the past year? No, it’s not the layout. It’s not the number of ads you’re being served. It’s not even the people most featured in your feed.

What has changed is the amount of video content you see up and down your news feed—to the tune of a 360% increase in video visibility (number of videos in your feed).

That’s no accident either. People are drawn more to video than they are to anything else. You can edit a photo to make it look stunning, but a video captures the larger story you want to tell. You can add music, a dialogue, and any visual effects you want—the end result being a more captivating piece of content.

It’s not just my opinion either—the numbers back it up. When you consider the average Facebook Page post reaches only 2.6% of its fans, you start to wonder how much of a difference video could possibly make. Well prepare to be shocked—video posts reach an astounding 13% of their audience.

Now that I’ve got your attention, let’s see how we can really take advantage of video in the coming year.

Facebook Live

We’ve all seen live Facebook videos pop up in recent months. Some of them are useful and entertaining (i.e. live press conferences), while others make me wonder why we put this capability in the hands of the public (i.e. streaming yourself walking to work).

Fortunately, most brands produce content that provide actual value. With that said, what are some of the smart ways in which brands are using this new tool?

• Conferences or events attended by employees
• Events put on by the company
• Behind the scenes at an event or build
• Live podcasts
• Q&A sessions

Can you see yourself using this feature next year? How about tomorrow? Amazingly, in its limited existence, Facebook Live has already proved to deliver better results than your ordinary video—live videos are watched three times as long as pre-recorded videos.

Now, this isn’t to say you should commit all of your content to live videos. You do that, you’re asking for disaster. However, in the world of on-demand content, this is a great way to mix in unique moments to your social feeds as it happens.

Pre-Recorded Video

There’s a reason that most content is developed and edited far in advance. The production value is higher, the talent has a margin for error, and you have complete control of the storyline.

Most people prefer this quality and attention to detail. An amateur video that gives you motion sickness while watching just doesn’t cut it. So, focusing your efforts on cleanly edited, engaging content is your best strategy moving forward.

Not sure what the focus of your video should be? Here’s the great thing—the options are all around you! Focus your video on what makes your company unique. Focus on the people, special events, and company traditions.

Fun, Cultural Series

Every company has its own culture and attitude that they live by. Some may be more casual and fun-loving while others may be more formal. Either way, there are a lot of things you can highlight about your company—likely on a regular basis.

Take RedPeg, for example. We had a four-piece series that asked employees to answer completely random questions, often giving insight into something funny, yet personal about them. It’s often the simple ideas like this that see the best engagement—not the long, drawn out ones.

Educational Videos

We all want to be experts in our fields, and one of the best way to showcase our message is through video. I’ve seen countless educational videos and let me tell you, it’s not an easy thing to do well. If you can do it in an entertaining way though, you may be on to something.

The best video series that I’ve seen that follows a simple, yet engaging pattern is Inc.’s “The Playbook.” I’d be remiss not to mention TED Talks, but they are far more production-heavy and are events in themselves. What I’m really looking for is a video series with minimal production necessary.

The Playbook features various business leaders sharing a one-to-two minute lesson about a topic of interest. The video may offer some kind of advice or it may provide something more tangible, like tools to use that will help improve your social media presence. Either way, it provides plenty of useful insight without sounding pretentious.

Words of Advice

There are many things you need to take into account when putting together video content. I won’t bore you with all of the details, but here are the highlights.

Timing

Believe it or not, shorter videos are often better. Even quick 30-second clips can provide the appropriate level of entertainment. Video content over 30 seconds risks losing one third of its audience, while anything over one minute loses roughly 45% of the audience.

Of course, the expectations your audience has must be taken into account. You create content for them, not for you. Consider the length of video, the style of video, and the type of topics they want to learn about.

Audio

When I watch Facebook videos, I tend to mute out the audio unless I see something that really catches my interest. Turns out I’m not alone as 85% of videos are viewed without sound.

With that said, it would behoove you to add captions to your video if audio is essential to the final product. Those who do, see a 12% increase in watch time.

The Hook

This should go without saying, but your first 8-10 seconds need to be engaging or you’ll see a huge drop off in viewers. When I’m scrolling through my Facebook feed, I usually watch the first couple of seconds without sound to see if it’s worth continuing.

For you, this means taking the time to put a good headline together, putting some production value into your intro, and getting to the point.

 


 

I hope by now you see why video content cannot be ignored. You can hear it from the horse’s mouth, as Facebook executives are telling you that their platform will likely be populated strictly by video five years down the road.

With content marketing being such a crowded space, creating great content is essential. Video content is a core piece of that content marketing. Make the investment now and you’ll be sure to reap the rewards for years down the road.

*All statistics provided by MediaKix