YouTube may be the largest video site in the world, with 300 hours worth of video content uploaded every minute, but Facebook may just have the edge when it comes to video sharing. A new report suggests that Facebook users are uploading videos directly to the site, favoring the social network over YouTube embeds and links in their news feeds.
Social media analysts, SocialBakers, state that, for the first time ever, user-uploaded video content has overtaken YouTube uploads, with the Facebook auto-play feature taking credit for the increase. Facebook videos posted to News Feeds have gained popularity month-on-month, mainly due to the fact that they tend to drive more engagement from users.
Facebook Video Uploads Bypass YouTube Uploads
November 2014 saw Facebook's share of video posts uploaded directly to the site overtake YouTube's video uploads to Facebook for the first time. Instagram uploads also took a slight dive compared to previous months:
The upward trend continues for Facebook Pages, where Facebook video uploads have increased to match those of YouTube.
Facebook Auto-Play: The Key to Sharing and Discovery
An Adobe report from early 2014 asserted that video could soon prove to be the most engaging content on Facebook, and the introduction of auto-play seems to have hastened that prediction. Unlike YouTube links, videos uploaded to Facebook directly will play automatically - but silently - as a user scrolls through their feed. This feature is an enticing one for both publishers and marketers as the onus lies with the user to stop the video after it has started to play. Making those first few seconds as compelling as possible means the user has not only been exposed to your content, but they may be interested enough to stay and watch, rather than scroll past.
The top 100 most ‘Liked’ pages on Facebook, 41 belong to brands, compared to the amazingly low figure of just 6 brands included in the 100 most subscribed channels on YouTube. Many brands are reporting higher engagement rates from Facebook activity than YouTube, and this is being reflected in their marketing campaigns. In January 2014, fast-food giant McDonald's posted 27 of their videos to Facebook, 18 of which were YouTube links, the rest Facebook video uploads. In September 2014, the brand published 32 videos, 19 of which were Facebook videos. That's a hugely significant difference, and a strategy that many will be watching very closely. And, with MacDonald's set to roll out 14,500 separate Facebook pages by 2015, that's a lot of potential video views and engagement that bypass YouTube altogether.
We reported back in September that Facebook users were watching 1 Billion Videos a day on the site, 65% via their mobile devices. with viewers watching that much video content, which only serves to highlight the popularity of this type of post on the social network, how long many other YouTube records will it smash in the coming months?