The importance of video content for online users is on the up and when you think of online videos, you will instinctively think of YouTube. This is only natural as YouTube has been the home of online videos for a very long time and even though there are other video platforms online, such as Vimeo and Daily Motion, YouTube is the place that the vast majority of video users immediately turn to. This may lead you to think that the battle for video supremacy was over before it even begun, but this may not be the case as major social media platforms are standing up to YouTube and their current position as number one video platform on the web.
While YouTube is regarded as the second biggest search engine in the world, Facebook is clearly the leading social media platform in the world. The number of youngsters using the site may be slipping, turning to more alternative social media platforms such as Snapchat but the importance of Facebook remains, and they are keen to be seen as a platform for videos.
One of the key differences between the ways the two platforms operate owes a little to the fact that YouTube is a major search engine. A lot of time a user will head to YouTube knowing exactly what they are looking for, and will search for a specific video. Once the video has been watched, the recommended videos and related videos on the right hand side of the screen will often keep users on the site for considerably longer.
Facebook will curate videos for users
Facebook is not going to compete on this level as their use of videos isn’t going to focus on the search element. Instead, Facebook wants to be seen as a curator, providing videos to their users based on what their algorithms think users are looking for. The fact that both platforms are opting for a very different approach means that they will likely sit by side for the most part, at least for now. Users looking for a specific video will be on YouTube before they think but if the algorithms on Facebook can provide videos what people are looking for, it will quickly be regarded as a great way to find out about new songs, funny clips and relevant news.
A lot will depend on what people place on their own timeline and what they claim to like but if Facebook can provide content that individuals love, it will very quickly provide a worthwhile service for the millions of users that log on to the site on a daily basis.
At this moment, many of the other details about how Facebook will utilise video content, including embedded video content, is unconfirmed but there is no doubt that this is going to become a major feature of the site. The fact that the site is taking responsibility for curating videos means that there isn’t much immediate scope for businesses to get excited but in time, it may be that Facebook will move on to allowing paid for video content to be placed on to the timeline of targeted or interested users. This could be a major step forward in online promotional activity.