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Why Social Video is Critical for 2018

Why Social Video is Critical for 2018

Just last week BuzzSumo a round-up of the most shared Facebook content in 2017. We love summaries like this as they are so helpful for new year planning!

Not surprisingly, music videos lead with 3 of the top 10 posts in 2017, including Ed Sheeran at number 2 with 10 million shares! Looking at the most viral Facebook posts this year, video is the clear winner - only 3 out of top 20 were not videos.

There are 2.07 billion users on Facebook, only a fraction of them are your target audience and most SMEs cannot expect to achieve such high levels of exceptional engagement with their posts. However, understanding what 'type' of content provokes a response should inform your content planning for Facebook in 2018. The most popular content topics in 2017 were:

Practical hacks - 5 of top 10 posts feature practical tips
Inspiring content
Food and recipes - 5 of top 25 posts were food posts
Cute animals
Music videos

Maybe you're getting the message - you cannot ignore video in your social content strategy. Stats and studies speak for themselves - check out the graphic:

  • Video received 1200% more shares than text and images combined!
  • Eye tracking study reveals consumers gaze five times longer at video than static content on Facbook and Instagram
  • 96% of consumers find videos helpful when making buying decisions
  • 4x many consumers would rather watch a video about a product then read about

The Power of Video

With this in mind, you need to be aware of the latest updates Facebook regarding video. On 14th December Facebook highlighted a new update to News Feed ranking, revealing that search and repeat views will now be prioritised to help 'surface' videos.

"We are updating News Feed ranking to improve distribution of videos from publishers and creators that people actively want to watch. With this update, we will show more videos in News Feed that people seek out or return to watch from the same publisher or creator week after week"
In other words, if people search for your video in the search bar or come specifically to your page or profile to watch repeatedly watch the videos you are producing you will be rewarded with greater distribution.

As always, engaging one-off videos will continue to do well, but to optimise audience engagement on Facebook you would do well to plan for a series of video shows or episodes to keep people coming back to view. Facebook wants to see video being used to bring people together and drive conversations.
Some users in the US already have access to 'Watch' and 'Show Pages' platforms exclusively for shows of this type (a vague statement by Facebook in August 2017 says they plan to bring this to more people soon). From this we do know what Facebook is looking for. They believe these types of 'shows' will be particularly successful so why not think about creating your own videos now:

Shows that engage fans and community. Nas Daily publishes a daily show where he makes videos together with his fans from around the world. The Watchlist makes it easy for fans to catch every day's new episode.
Live shows that connect directly with fans. Gabby Bernstein, a New York Times bestselling author, motivational speaker, and life coach, uses a combination of recorded and live episodes to connect with her fans and answer questions in real time.
Shows that follow a narrative arc or have a consistent theme. Tastemade's Kitchen Little is a funny show about kids who watch a how-to video of a recipe, then instruct professional chefs on how to make it.
Live events that bring communities together. In the US Major League Baseball is broadcasting a game a week on Facebook, enabling people to watch live baseball while connecting with friends and fellow fans on the platform.

If you're planning your content strategy for 2018 and need help understanding how to include video, or how to create a series of engaging shows to help drive your social reach feel free to get in touch - 01934 806528 or email