Where should I publish my video?

One question many customers ask is how to make sure you get many views on a video? The first thing to consider is where you post the video, Facebook, YouTube or both? Both platforms have their benefits and drawbacks, here are a few things to consider.

Reaching your customers effectively

YouTube has been the leading platform for video and was for a long time the obvious choice when posting videos. However, Facebook has added a lot of video functionality and might give better visibility for your video. Facebooks social format also encourages people to comment and share content they find relates to them in some way.

Facebook uses an algorithm called Edgerank to determine how content is displayed, who it reaches and what is in the top of the feed. YouTube is owned by Google, adding a YouTube link to Facebook means traffic is diverted to another platform. The people at Facebook don´t really like that. This means that YouTube links on Facebook are not very effective what comes to reaching an audience.

Use Facebooks features to increase the visibility of your video

Another thing to consider is Facebooks autoplay feature. If you add a video to Facebook, it starts playing automatically when people scroll through the feed. Facebook even added a feature where a video which is playing stays on the screen as you scroll further down.

A third benefit of posting directly to Facebook is the size of the thumbnail image in the feed. The thumbnail image for a Facebook video is over twice as large as videos linked from other platforms.

Finally, if you have a budget to spend on Facebook advertising, then boosting your video with a few euros will make it even more effective in reaching your customers. Facebooks analytics tools will give you quite detailed info on how effective your campaign has been, as well as providing demographic info on what groups of people you have reached.

So what are the downsides of posting a video on Facebook?

Facebook posts tend to have quite a short lifespan. Linking a Facebook video to a webpage is not very easy, this is where it makes sense to publish the same video and content on Youtube as well. Youtube is ranked as the #2 search engine after Google, meaning if your video is still important after 6 or 12 months, it´s probably a good idea to post the same content on both platforms.

Another thing to consider is the video quality. Images and videos posted on Facebook are re-compressed to decrease the file-size. This impacts the quality of both the image and the sound, YouTube has a clear benefit here offering up to 8k resolution on the video as well as supporting a wide range of frame-rates etc.

If you publish content on a very regular basis, like a vlog or similar, then it also makes sense to make good use of the YouTube subscription and notification functions to make sure that people who subscribe to your feed get notifications of new content.

Other things to consider

Independent of what platform you choose, the following things help you making your video stand out:

  • Add a custom thumbnail to the video. One trick that is effective is to add a big play button over the thumbnail image

  • Link a call to action with the video, this way the video is most effective in giving return on investment
  • Add links in the video description
  • Schedule your video to be posted at optimised times, perhaps on Friday evening when people relax on the sofa with a glass of wine...
  • Share the video with people or groups relevant to the video
  • Make effective use of hashtags as well as tagging people or content in the video

Match the content to the platform

As can be seen from the points above, it is important to match the content to the platform capabilities. Individual commercial videos are most effective when posting directly on Facebook where as if you publish videos on a weekly basis, YouTube might be the best platform for you. Sponsored content reaches far more potential customers on Facebook where as showreels with amazing video quality tend to work better on Youtube and are easier linked to other channels.