Video posting and sharing – Youtube or Facebook – which is best?
Video posting & sharing is just as important as making your video – what is the point of making a video if no-one ever sees it?
I am frequently asked which is the best place for posting & sharing videos – Facebook or Youtube? So here are my thoughts from my own experiences of getting my videos – and my clients’ videos – ‘seen’ by the target market. . .
Well, they both have their unique qualities – as do we all 😉 It really depends what you want your video to do . . .
When you think of online video, the first video sharing site most people think of is . . . well . . .Youtube. They have built their brand over many years (since 2005) and there are an estimated 4 billion views on Youtube every day!!
Facebook, who have been offering video ads since 2014, also claim to get 4 billion views per day but as videos play automatically, these figures may be a bit skewed. Facebook count a ‘view’ as being 3 seconds or more – and as their videos play automatically, you can see why this might not be too accurate! How many videos have you scrolled past on your newsfeed – while they were playing?? Youtube prefers to measure results by the ‘watch time’ of a video and boasts hundreds of millions of hours of video watched each day!
Nevertheless Facebook is keen to battle with Youtube – which is good for us video publishers!
In terms of quality, Youtube has the edge over how a video looks and sounds in terms of resolution and audio sampling, so if this is important to you, then Youtube is the best choice for you. However, you also need to ask where your target market is looking – and whether they’re that bothered by resolution or audio sampling – or even know what they mean? The most important thing, however, is that you get your message across to your target audience!
As Youtube is the second biggest search engine after Google (who, as it happens, owns Youtube – which is very important to appreciate when it comes to ranking videos!), with good Video SEO you can get your videos found – ie you work out which keywords people are using to search for your particular service or product and you use those words, not only in the script of the video, but in the title of the video, in the metatags of the video and even in the thumbnail image title, and definitely within the description under the video. Google’s aim is to give the ‘searcher’ what they are looking for, so your video has to be tagged well enough so that Google puts your video in front of a viewer first rather than any other video.
SHORT-TERM / LONG-TERM
Videos directly uploaded to Facebook have a short life cycle. Unless you keep ‘boosting’ your Facebook video it will soon become ‘lost’ – especially as it’s not that easy to search for – unlike Youtube videos which stay very searchable (if you have optimised them well) within both the Youtube platform and through Google itself – until you delete them.
Videos on Facebook are also harder to share – outside of Facebook that is; sharing within Facebook is a doddle. Youtube also allows you to make your videos more interactive by having clickable links to other videos you’ve made using ‘cards’ and ‘annotations’ (be careful as ‘annotations’ don’t work on smartphones) – or linking to your website and getting people to subscribe to your channel. With Facebook, a video sometimes gets separated from its original text where you might have included a link to your website.
Before Facebook offered video publishing and advertising, people used to post the link of their Youtube video on their Facebook page and in groups – which they still can do. However the advantage of uploading directly to Facebook is that you don’t need to click on a link to view the video and the thumbnail image is much bigger. These screenshots below show the difference between how Facebook displays a link and thumbnail to a Youtube video (first screenshot) and how they display a video that has been directly uploaded to Facebook (second screenshot). As an aside, I targeted this Facebook video to small business owners within a 60km radius of Bergerac in SW France – and just look at the views I got on Facebook for a budget of 10€! AND if you type ‘BNI Bergerac’ into Google – or Facebook, the video will appear on page 1 – that’s the power of good Video SEO . . . If you don’t want to search for it – and you speak french – you can watch the video here:https://youtu.be/D9X3SYApF_o
So, what’s so good about using Facebook to host and share your videos? Well, as mentioned already, if you’re a Facebook user you will, no doubt, have seen videos that automatically start playing in your newsfeed – and it’s not necessarily one from a ‘friend’ – but it might actually be something of interest to you. That’s because all those likes, shares and comments that you have been giving to other posts have told Facebook what you like, so they are sending you other ‘paid for’ ie ‘sponsored’ posts that just might be of interest to you too. The targetting that Facebook can do is scarily sophisticated – which is great for advertisers! So if you want your video to ‘magically’ appear in the newsfeeds of, say, all 25 year old men who live in Paris, who like dogs and love peanut butter then it will! And because Facebook is competing with Youtube, the amount you need to pay for your video appearing in front of your target market is very cost-effective. Of course Youtube offers advertising too – in the form of ‘skippable’ ads that are placed on ‘monetised’ videos. So when you are making your video, make sure that the first few seconds of it really catches the attention of the viewer, who was actually planning on watching another video – and not yours! And you can even choose exactly which monetised video your video will appear before . . . a competitor’s perhaps . . . ? Something to think about – especially if you decide to monetise your own videos!
I hope this article helps you decide where to publish your videos. Why not do some tests across both platforms and use Facebook’s and Youtube’s analytics to see which works best for you and your business? I’d love you to share this article on any of your social media accounts by clicking on the icons below: