Mastering Facebook’s Video Marketing Algorithms

Facebook Video Marketing

Video marketing is really changing many aspects of Facebook marketing. There are around 4 billion views daily, rivaling the biggest video social media platform, You Tube. People spend a lot of time on Facebook, thus the sudden spike in views.

This June, 2015, Facebook announced that it is beginning to take into account users’ interaction with videos on this platform, for instance, enabling high definition, turning on sound, making them full screen, and even watch time, in relation to other content on the News Feed.

In a blog post, Facebook said that the actions that people take on videos show that they want to see the video, even if they may not want to like or share it. The fact that users do not like, share or comment on a post doesn’t necessarily mean that they did not find it meaningful. Facebook is more focused on creating an engaging user experience with videos on this platform.

Facebook said that they shared an update on News Feed ranking to ensure that people see more of the kind of videos that they watch. The aforementioned actions (turning on sound and enabling full screen among others) lead the Facebook algorithms to infer that the person likes the videos, thus show similar videos higher on the News feed. This update would consider the videos users watched and for how long they did. If one tends to watch videos more when compared to other types of content on the news feed, then they will see more videos higher up on their news feed. If one watches less videos when compared to other content on the News feed, then videos will be further down on their news feed.

These changes mean that online marketers can leverage video marketing on Facebook. However, one must put in a lot of effort to build a loyal base of subscribers. So how do you master Facebook’s algorithms to ensure that your videos receive as many views as possible? Let us delve into some of Facebook’s algorithms every marketer ought to know:

1. The Native Video Algorithm

Video content has become the number one type of content that can easily get to users on Facebook. This is because this giant social media site has made significant changes in its content distribution. A video post receives an organic reach of 8.7% according to a study by Socialbakers. This translates to 9 out of 100 fans getting to see a video post. The algorithm behind this is the native video algorithm.

Native content is an aspect of Facebook marketing that cannot be undermined. Native content is what is directly uploaded on Facebook. Native content reaches audiences more effectively and performs way better when compared to linked videos, for instance to You Tube. This type of content engages the audience, allowing them to spend more time on Facebook, thus the algorithm rewards it. An example of how effective this algorithm is is PopSugar. This is an online media network whose audience is largely female. When they began posting videos directly on Facebook, they moved from 20,000 views to 14.3 million views in 7 months.

What can we learn from their video marketing strategy on Facebook?

- Use of bold text graphics

PopSugar uses bold text graphics. This is because native videos tend to play automatically without any sound being produced. This creates an engaging experience whether the viewer chooses to turn the sound on or not.

- Short videos

This takes care of the short concentration spans that most viewers have online.

It is important to note that when you post a video’s link on Facebook from another video hosting site, the auto-play option is not available. There is also a possibility of lower resolution.

2. The Video Newsjack Hack

Facebook introduced trending topics on its desktop version in January 2014, and on its mobile version in December 2014. A News section was also added. This section allowed for the discovery of trending topics in Business, Technology, Entertainment, Politics and Sports. The addition of the News section resulted in the Newsjack Hack algorithm which prioritizes posts that match what is trending or even current events.

So how do digital marketers make use of this interesting aspect of Facebook marketing?

One way is via creating video posts around current events. Unfortunately, there is a possibility of news losing popularity fast. If you want to leverage trends, then you must act very fast. You need a simple video tool which you use to create your content. You then need to add relevant hashtags when you are posting the video. Your video may provide a unique twist to the story, or even comment on it.

One company was able to leverage trends on Facebook- Pampers UK. They posted a video on Facebook which worked with the trend of the birth of Prince Charlotte titled 'Every baby is a prince or princess'. The video celebrates all births and has over 44 million views since May 2015.

For your video marketing strategy to work in favor of the Newsjack algorithm, or rather for it to work in your favor, you need to have a team online so that they can pick trends as soon as they begin and create videos around them.

3. The CTA Video Hack

Uploading native videos on Facebook gives brands opportunities for a call to action within a video post. When the native video plays to the end, the viewer has 2 options: replaying the video or clicking the call to action button. However a downside to this Facebook marketing strategy is that the call to actions are limited. Nonetheless, it still encourages viewers to further engage with the post. Viewers can 'shop now' or 'learn more' about your brand.

All in All

You need not master all the algorithms. Even if you want to, Facebook makes it very easy for marketers to learn them and include them in their video marketing strategies. Options like the call to action button help convert viewers to customers. Mastering the algorithms will make Facebook marketing more specific. It is time to leverage these opportunities as Facebook begins to focus more on users’ experience with videos on this giant social media platform.



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