In January Facebook announced a change as to how it ranks videos on its platform to give more value to the percentage of longer videos watched as they recognise this takes a bigger commitment by the viewer. This means that longer content could benefit over shorter videos if viewers have invested time watching them and so are more likely to ‘pop up’ into news feeds increasing your distribution. So, despite our reported attention spans getting shorter year on year, there is a place for longer videos, providing your content is engaging enough to get the views in the first place
This, combined with the new ‘mid-roll’ ads – or ‘adbreaks - (currently being trialed: http://www.thedrum.com/news/2017/02/26/brace-yourself-whole-lot-more-mid-roll-ads-facebook-videos) which, if introduced, will allow publishers to insert adverts into content of 90 seconds or more, paves the way for cashing in on longer videos too. Win win! You can insert adverts of 15 seconds after viewers have watched at least 20 seconds of a video. It’s a gamble, and it may not be rolled out nationwide, but it could be a way of paying for that content in the first place. Naturally this would work well for Facebook’s top publishers, such as the UK’s very own UNILAD and The LAD Bible who achieved over 8 million views between then in January alone, putting the UK firmly at the top spot for content creators on the platform. As with most things on Facebook it may be a while before it’s rolled out to all our pages so watch this space.
What about the rest of us competing for views in the digital playground? Smaller brands might not want to risk losing views by having ads inserted into their content, but video is still a great investment. Production company Groundbreak’s recent survey found that 80% of 18-24 yr olds stated video content to be a main driver in developing brand loyalty only falling to 52 % amongst 65 + yr olds, although only 14% were likely to make a purchase after watching a video. This suggests that content has offer added value rather than attempting to sell products and services directly. And if it’s funny, Groundbreak’s survey suggests 49% people are more likely to share it too, which explains why UNILAD and The Lad Bible are the most watched brands!