Facebook video is huge- Facebook reported seeing 100 million hours of daily video watch time near the end of 2015. And with the newer “related videos feature,” where people are automatically served another video after their current one, you can bet video views have grown dramatically from there.
There are a lot of Facebook video options:
- Facebook Live
- Facebook video in your personal or page posts
- Facebook video ads
As you might know, I am a big believer in advertising everything you can on Facebook, even if you have a small budget…
Before you run away- let me explain!
What happens if you don’t use ads with your videos?
- No certainty you get views. They don’t get viewed much. You may get lucky if your video is super awesome and goes viral… but unless you’re already a celebrity, you probably won’t get more than a couple thousand views. Even if you’re super interesting and talented, most videos don’t go viral- they get a few hundred views and fizzle out.
- No certainty of target audience. Organic videos don’t necessarily reach who you want them to. Who sees them is not under your control. It’s whoever happens to be on Facebook right then, however the algorithm works, whoever likes or shares, whoever their friends are, et cetera.
- No certainty of reaching your target buyer. If you’re doing this video for business, you might not reach your target customer. Or out of your several hundred views, maybe only a few dozen are your ideal buyers.
- No certainty of traffic, leads or sales. Even if you have a link somewhere in that video or post, the percentage of those who watch that click is not 100%; it’s going to be between 1-10%. So if 200 or so watch, maybe 2-20 people click to your site. And what % of visitors do things on your site? Maybe 1% buy and 10% opt into an email list? So very little action comes from this.
But when you advertise your videos, you can:
- Reach exactly the right audience (your best buyers, not just anybody, not just friends family employees)
- Reach them right away (not like whenever… maybe… but NOW)
- Reach enough potential customers to discover how they respond to your content- or don’t
- Get more detailed stats and metrics from the ad manager than you do from Facebook Page Insights
The last thing is critical. If you don’t run ads for your videos, you won’t get a lot of analytics or insights about them. And you won’t learn much. The video analytics you get when you don’t run ads are pretty limited.
Trust me, you’ll be surprised by what you learn. You need to know
- How many seconds people are watching your videos on average
- Which audiences watch them the longest
- Which ones convert
- Which ones don’t
There are four ways to run video ads on Facebook, and all produce different results.
The first thing you absolutely MUST understand about how Facebook ads work, that many many people don’t know is that the ad goal determines who FB shows the ad to based on their most common FB activities which ensures you mainly get that response and very little of the others…
In other words,
- Choosing an engagement ad shows the ad to people who engage a lot, but these people don’t necessarily click to websites…
- Choosing a video view ad shows the ad to people who view a lot of videos, but these people don’t necessarily like posts or click to websites…
So your actual Facebook targeting is:
- Not just the targeting you choose, but also
- The subset of those people who most do the thing that you’ve chosen as your ad goal.
The five ways to advertise video on Facebook are:
- Video in post, promoting the post (whether boost or a post promotion ad from ad manager/power editor): gets you in front of the subset of your audience who likes, shares and comments on posts, so you get much more engagement on the post than video views, link clicks or conversions
- Video view ad: gets you in front of the people who watch a lot of video, so you get a lot of video views, more than post engagement, link clicks or conversions
- Website traffic ad with video instead of image: gets you in front of people who click off FB on links to other sites (but not necessarily the subset that converts), so you get a lot of link clicks, more than video views, engagement or conversions
- Website conversion ads with video instead of image: gets you in front of the people who click AND convert BOTH, so you get conversions, but less clicks, video views and engagement.
Start with your goal, then choose the right ad type.
- Awareness boosting ad with video instead of image: this is interesting, because in our initial tests with this, it actually beats the video view ad at its own game!
Here’s how those shake out:
NOT PICTURED: The awareness boosting ad gets you larger reach and at times can get you more views and longer duration than the video view ad.
But just beware- both the video view ad and awareness boosting ads can get you a lot of exposure but won’t necessarily get you interaction or conversions.
What do I recommend?
I like the awareness boosting ad and the website conversion ad with a video in it. I run them in separate campaigns with separate budgets.
That way you can get exposure AND conversions. Best of both worlds.
Brian Carter is a popular digital marketer and keynote speaker with Fortune 500 clients like NBC, Microsoft and Humana as well as small businesses who delivers motivational keynotes with practical takeaways based his ad agency’s 15 years of daily cutting-edge work driving awareness, leads and sales for their business clients. His agency, The Brian Carter Group, creates marketing that excites customers and increases brand visibility, sales and loyalty. Brian is a bestselling author you’ve probably seen on Bloomberg TV or in Inc, Entrepreneur, The Wall Street Journal or The New York Times. He has over 250,000 online fans and reaches over 3 million people per year.