In 2014, Facebook introduced auto-play for videos on the news feed. As users scroll through their news feed, videos will play automatically, allowing them to instantly discover new content. According to Facebook for Business, video views grew more than 50 percent from May through July in 2014. Since June 2014, an average of 1 billion videos has been viewed on Facebook per day.
The increase in video viewing and sharing has positioned Facebook as a competitor to YouTube as a platform for video marketing and advertising. According to Business Insider, Facebook has an average of 1.4 billion active monthly users compared to YouTube’s 1.3 billion active monthly users.
Online video sharing grew by 33 percent in 2014 and is estimated to grow another 29 percent per year through 2017. This is the highest projected growth in any digital category. Experts believe that while Facebook is beneficial to companies who want to increase their own brand awareness, the platform is becoming increasingly useful to entities that want to advertise specific services and products.
Facebook’s decision to use a native format for video sharing on the website – unlike YouTube’s embedded video sharing format – was no mistake. According to Facebook, advertisements delivered in a native format generate an 18 percent higher purchase intent among consumers.
These are the numbers that advertisers want to see. Facebook’s video innovations are making it easier for advertisers to deliver content. Stay tuned to see if Facebook surpasses YouTube as the go-to platform for videos.