As Facebook continues to evolve, it has increasingly prioritized the importance of videos across the platform. In this article, we'll be compiling and distilling the most important best practices to help your videos succeed on Facebook. These tips will help you make the most of pre-existing content and will provide advice to keep in mind when it comes to creating new videos for the platform.
Let's start…at the start! The first 60 seconds of your video are crucial for the distribution of your video. Therefore, Facebook recommends creating a 15-second trailer, a sort of 'coming up' section to tease the rest of your video right at the start. You can even use the Smart Preview tool, which uses machine learning to create a 10-second clip that will be automatically added to the beginning of your video. 15-second trailers lead to great engagement, according to Facebook itself – even more so than shorter 5-second trailers.
Once you create a captivating intro to your video, you can turn to a few tools that can be used to optimize your video automatically. Auto Captions and Smart Crop are both features that require no work on your end but can make your video much more accessible to a wider audience, and they can make a huge difference in a successful video rollout.
Auto Captions open the accessibility of your video to those who may have sound turned off, and it also allows your video to be enjoyed by viewers who may be hearing impaired. Facebook will even show you an accuracy rating that explains how accurate your captions are and, will enable you to easily access and edit sections where mistakes may have occurred. This is an extremely powerful tool that you should make sure to use frequently.
Smart Crop takes your video aspect ratio and optimizes it for your desired screen space. For example, converting a 16:9 aspect ratio to a format like 1:1 or 4:5 which can maximize visibility of your video across a device's screen real estate. Cropping can be especially effective for helping your videos stand out when viewing them on mobile devices. In addition, Smart Crop keeps subjects framed in the center, along with important text and high contrast areas.
Now, let's go over titles, descriptions, thumbnails, and tags. All four are essential aspects that should be custom-tailored for every upload. Try and keep your titles short yet eye-catching, and make sure they remain true to the video's content and steer clear from obvious clickbait. For descriptions, try opening with a question that may entice comments on your video. Comments boost video engagement and, in return, help the distribution of your video. Your video's thumbnail is the first thing that will draw a viewer's attention, so make it count! Check out this blog post for best practices on creating thumbnails. Finally, tags can help the discoverability of your video and should always include relevant keywords that may help people find your video when they are using Facebook's search engine. Facebook only allows eight tags per video, so choose them wisely.
Next, we'll take a look at is Facebook's A/B testing feature. This feature lets you release two slightly different versions of one video. Sending each to a different group of viewers while you gather results that help indicate which version of your video resonates more with viewers. This allows you to try alternate titles, descriptions, and thumbnails to see which works best. After the testing is complete, Facebook will present the results in the "Post Testing" tab. Here, you can see watch time, link clicks, comments, 1-minute videos, and other important information that will help you compare the performance of each version of the video.
Lastly, let's talk about two more ways you can optimize your viewing experience on Facebook. That's with playlists and call-to-actions. Creating custom organized playlist can be a great way to keep viewers watching your content. Try to keep playlist refined and easy for viewers to quickly find the content they are looking for. For example, if you have a podcast, try making a playlist for all of the full episodes. Now, let's talk call-to-actions, which are a very easy and effective way to prompt viewers to like your page, share a video, or even check out a playlist. Use on-screen text, voice over or just tell your audience during the video an action they can take to keep in touch with you and your content.
Following these steps will help your videos stand apart and reach more viewers across the Facebook platform. For more information regarding this or any other Facebook-related topics, feel free to contact us.