19 January 2018

Facebook Video Generates More Interaction than YouTube

  • Phone recording concert
Robyn Hardman, digital and social media specialist, Alias

A recent study has found that Facebook’s native videos generate 530% more comments than videos posted on YouTube.

In an analysis of 187,000 Facebook profiles and over 7.5 million Facebook posts across six months, the study also discovered that 92% of those profiles use native video on the platform, and that there’s a 477% higher average share rate for Facebook videos compared to YouTube videos.

To be honest, we’re not surprised. Although YouTube may be the biggest search engine in the world, and is often seen as the world’s leader when it comes to video, Facebook is by far the largest social network and has a lot more to it than just video. Therefore, people are more likely to just be on the site and will simply be exposed to videos when they’re looking at other types of posts.

However, on YouTube, visitors are going there specifically to watch videos.  YouTube is also a lot less personal than Facebook – you don’t use it to share videos with your friends, but you might use Facebook or Messenger to share a video from YouTube with then. And, we can’t forget that YouTube also has a bit of a reputation when it comes to its comment section, which may cause reluctance for some to leave a message underneath.

From a practical point of view, the user experience on Facebook is much smoother – it’s simpler to comment on videos and share them. Think about all the videos your friends tag you in, and all those comments that say ‘that’s so us!’. It’s interesting to see this kind of social convention evolve following the introduction of a specific mechanic – in this case, tagging friends in comments – and clever brands are taking full advantage of it with specialised calls to action around their video content, encouraging people to tag a friend and share.

However, that’s not to say that YouTube doesn’t have a place for brands. Lots of influencers use YouTube as their primary channel, and YouTube has millions of visitors each day – even if people aren’t commenting on your content, it doesn’t mean they’re not watching. Depending on your business, YouTube can provide a good backup channel for your video content, and is the industry standard when it comes to embedding video on your website.

From an interaction basis, it’s clear to see that Facebook is winning when it comes to video at the moment, but it’s still important to be sure that you’re using the right channels for your audience – after all, teens under 16 are likely to respond more to Snapchat, but over 45s are more likely to be found on Facebook. Now, time to tag my mum in that video of the cute puppy …

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# Facebook, YouTube, Video, Digital Marketing, Social Media

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