Facebook is overflowing with content. In fact, according to Adweek, every minute on Facebook there are ‘300 new profiles being created, 293,00 statuses that are updated, 510,000 comments are posted and 136,000 photos are uploaded.’ With all of this content being produced, how are you going to make your video stand out? While Facebook has been constantly modifying its algorithm that determines what content gets shown on the News Feed, it can be difficult to understand. To help you break through the noise, let’s break down how Facebook’s algorithm works and different strategies you can incorporate to help take your content to the top.

How Facebook Algorithm Works

Every time you open Facebook, its News Feed goes through an algorithm, or series of steps it takes to determine where each piece of content will appear on an individual’s News Feed. This ranking is different for each user and is based on their personal preferences in addition to Facebook’s official News Feed Core Values. When ranking content, here’s what Facebook prioritizes:

  • Family and Friends come first: Above all, Facebook is a social network that utilizes its News Feed to connect people to other people. This is why the social media giant prioritizes posts and videos from family and friends first. Facebook attempts to learn your preferences from monitoring for past behavior, so if you like or comment on the same friend’s content on multiple occasions, you are more likely to see their content first.
  • Content Should Inform and Entertain– After content from friends and family, Facebook wants to show you content that is interesting, informative and adds value to your life. For example, informative content covering current events, celebrity news, or DIY projects will often be interjected with a funny viral cat video to ensure your News Feed doesn’t get too boring.
  • Facebook is a ‘platform for all ideas’– Facebook welcomes all ideas and will not favor any specific source. As long as the content is safe for viewers, it will be arranged in an order to provide the most meaningful content first.
  • Authentic content– Facebook prioritizes genuine content and attempts to limit the exposure of any misleading, sensational, or spammy posts.
  • You control your Facebook experience– Facebook values personalization and offers its users different features, like ‘unfollow’ or ‘hide’ posts they don’t want to see or ‘see first’ to prioritize content they do want to see, for a completely customizable experience. During its ranking process, Facebook also places heavy emphasis on a user’s past actions and feedback, to deliver the most relevant information.
  • Constant iteration– Nobody is perfect, not even Facebook, that is why it is constantly taking user feedback and adjusting its algorithm to improve its platform’s design and function.

Tips for Optimizing Your Facebook Content

Now that you have a better understanding of Facebook News Feed guiding principles you can incorporate these strategies to help take your video content to the top:

  • Make video content that can stand alone without sound– By creating a video you are already increasing your chances of having your content seen on other user News Feeds. In fact, videos accumulate 1,200% more shares than a post with text and images combined. While Facebook’s algorithm does take into account a video’s post engagement, it also factors how long a viewer watches it. Since a majority of Facebook users watch videos without sound, you’ll need to create content that can keep their attention…even on mute. If you feel your content needs audio to be consumed, consider added captions with Facebook’s automated caption tool.
  • Make content that is timely and relevant– People want to open Facebook to see what’s going on in-the-moment. Creating a video about current news or trending topics will help boost your video towards the top of the feed. Including relevant hashtags in your video description will also gain exposure for your video. However, you’ll want to make sure that the timely content is still relevant to your brand and is something your audience will want to watch. For example, if you typically shoot make-up tutorials, you should not post a video showcasing your feelings about the winner of the World Series. Instead, time your content around famous award shows, like the Grammys, to show your users how to recreate red carpet looks.
  • Make longer videos– Earlier this year, Facebook updated its algorithm to rank videos based on their “percent completion’ or how much of a video, viewers actually watch. Facebook understands it takes users more of a commitment to complete a longer video than to watch a shorter one, so it places more weight on the ‘percent completion’ for a longer video rather than a shorter one. For example, if people are watching an average of 30% of a 30-second video and 30% of a 10-minute video, the longer video will rank higher because it is engaging users much longer.
  • Make your content mobile-friendly– Facebook found that 40% of website visitors abandon their search after a 3-second delay so any video that takes too long to load or that link back to an outside web page that takes too long to load, will decrease their chances of being seen on the News Feed.
  • Encourage engagement in unique ways– Facebook is always looking for spam and will flag any content that is constantly and directly asking audiences to like or share a post. Get creative with your approach. Ask your viewers to tag three friends or ask them a question during your video and prompt them to answer in the comments below. This type of organic engagement will help boost you further up the News Feed.

As you adjust your Facebook strategy and begin to see success on the News Feed, expand your video’s reach even further by publishing your video across every social network with Vydia’s Social Sync technology. Social Sync will allow you to natively post a video on Facebook and have it automatically upload in your Vydia Media Manager, so you can protect and publish it across your other connected networks in one easy workflow. Learn how to activate Social Sync here and make sure you check back with our weekly blogs for more tips and tricks about managing your content.