To say that video on Facebook is booming is something of an understatement. In 2016, the amount of video being published to the world's largest social network increased 94% year-over-year. Facebook itself is reportedly paying over $50 million to influencers, publishers and even celebrities to generate the type of live content their 1.71 billion monthly active users crave. When you also consider the fact that Facebook has been aggressively pushing video into the newsfeeds of its users, if you're not already doing video it's officially time to start.
However, it's important to understand that the chasm between a Facebook video strategy and an effective Facebook video strategy is a deep one, indeed. If you really want to create the best campaign that you can, there are a few key things to keep in mind.
Know Your Audience
If you want to create the type of Facebook videos that your audience craves, you need to understand as much about who you're trying to reach as possible. Remember that not all social networks are created equally. Twitter users, for example, like shorter bursts of information. Instagram users rely on heavy visuals, etc.
Facebook users, on the other hand, are all about long-form content. They're willing to spend a great deal of time on their favorite social networking site, as evidenced by the popularity of platforms like Facebook Live. Not only do you need to play to the strengths of the network you're using as a marketing channel (in this case, Facebook) but you also need to understand what your own specific users are actually looking for, too.
Define Those Goals
What, exactly, are you trying to accomplish? The video format is great because it's malleable, but the flip side of that coin is that slight tweaks to your content can generate very different results over time. Are you just trying to raise brand awareness? Do you want to drive people to your website? Are you trying to generate new leads or increase sales?
Your Facebook video content needs to be purpose-driven, meaning that they need to be built with an end goal in mind FIRST. Don't leave this as an afterthought.
Focus On Shareable Content
At the end of the day, Facebook is still a social network - which means that you need to create video content that people don't just want to watch, but that they want to share with others. Facebook users in particular love how-to videos, promotional videos, live content and more. Don't pigeonhole yourself into JUST being the "how-to" company or your users might get bored. Instead, focus on a little bit of everything.
Create a Publishing Schedule and Stick To It
If there is a particular time of day or week when your audience is most active, build a publishing schedule around these facts. But once you've started publishing, you HAVE to stick to it. If you know your audience is most active on Wednesdays at 3:00pm and you publish three videos on consecutive weeks at this time, people are going to start expecting you to do the same every week.
This rule of thumb, aka publishing schedule applies to all channels where you interact with your users. The importance of a publishing schedule is oftentimes underestimated. But you should understand that if you break from the pattern you've set, you give your audience a chance to go looking elsewhere for what they need.
If you are having trouble scheduling posts on Facebook (for instance, your audience is spread out all around the world or you simply have no time to make sure you post at the right moment for the right people), there are plenty of great scheduling tools to help you out. Some of our favourite are Buffer and Hootsuite.
Measure Your Results
If you really want to make sure that your Facebook video is helping you accomplish your goals, you need to know how to measure your performance in both short and long-term ways. Find the KPIs for your Facebook video content that align with your long-term goals. If you're trying to raise brand awareness, it stands to reason that you would want to focus on things like number of views or social shares. If you're trying to bring in new customers, you would want to pay close attention to leads, etc.
If you are looking for more metrics that you can measure for a Facebook video, make sure to check Facebook Business page that provides a list of metrics you should pay attention to.
Test, Optimize, Test Some More
Get this in your head right now: there is ALWAYS room for improvement when it comes to Facebook video publishing. Once you get the first results in for your video, it's time to experiment. Try adding in a different call-to-action, or maybe try posting at a slightly different time.
In essence, make small but meaningful changes to your video content to see if this brings in better results. Use the actionable data you obtain and feed it directly back into the videos themselves, making future publishing efforts even stronger.
In the End
Facebook is unique in that it's a lot more than just a social network. Something like MySpace was a social network - a place where friends would post diatribes, share photos from last weekend's backyard barbecue and keep up-to-date with their favorite celebrities.
Facebook is something more. It's something powerful. It's a true networking platform in every sense of the word. People turn to it for their news, to reach out to those closest to them and for just about every other reason that you can possibly think of. But most importantly, Facebook is intimate.
Facebook's users are many and they are unendingly loyal. In terms of reaching your audience through high quality video content and creating the type of meaningful, emotional connection that will help propel your business to success in the future, you'd be hard-pressed to find a better alternative right now. Provided, that is, that you execute your Facebook video strategy in the right way.