Facebook has long been the dominant Social Media platform. In fact, the website and mobile application has gained over 1.3 billion active monthly users. However, Facebook is no longer the king. Last month, YouTube took over as the most popular Social Media website in the world, beating out Facebook with a total of 167,848,349 unique monthly visitors.
What’s unique about YouTube and other video sharing Social platforms is that they typically overlooked when marketers are designing their digital campaigns. Still, there are plenty of brands that market on YouTube, but relatively speaking, there are many fewer than other Social platforms. With this information coming to the surface, many brands need to incorporate YouTube into their branding efforts.
How Did YouTube Overtake Facebook?
There are many contributing factors to the change in popularity of Social platforms. The basic idea behind Facebook is to allow for people to connect from anywhere in the world. The ability to see how your friends and family are doing is great. However, after we are exposed to enough vacation photos and status updates, we become desensitized to future posts. Facebook becomes more of a way to pass the time while bored in line, or while waiting for a show to continue after a commercial break. Users also scroll through posts until they find a person or a post of interest. This causes them to miss many marketing message. Because we become desensitized to posts after we have become overexposed, we lose interest in the Social Media platform. YouTube is formatted differently. Over 500 years of video are posted to YouTube every day, so there is no fathomable way to run out of videos to watch.
Type in anything into YouTube’s search bar and you will find hundreds, if not thousands of videos relating to the subject. Unlike Facebook, YouTube is not generally the “go to” Social Media platform when users only have a few seconds to consume the message. The user needs to be in an environment where they can to hear the audio and see the video to receive the proper message from the video. As a result, users are forced to be more engaged with YouTube’s content than the typical wall post found on Facebook.
YouTube is also less likely to be repetitive than Facebook. Everyone has friends on Facebook that update their statuses far too often, send you invites to cheesy Facebook games, send you random invites to music shows, or post 30 pictures one at a time, so that your news feed is flooded with lovely pictures of someone you probably haven’t talked to in years. Things like this can cause users to become frustrated and less active. YouTube operates differently. Viewers choose what to be exposed to, and the suggested content is based on past activity, so the user actually sees what they want to see.
Why do Marketers Often Overlook YouTube?
Although YouTube offers recommended videos and new videos from subscribed channels, the website relies heavily on their Search button. Facebook and other conventional Social Media websites are very reactionary, and do not emphasize the exploration process the way that YouTube does.
In a past blog article, we discussed how brands can leverage YouTube to their advantage when attempting to increase their engagement, and ultimately their brand image. Firms planning to leverage Social Media successfully need to add YouTube into the mix if they want to optimize their customer engagement. As mentioned above, YouTube users are generally more engaged in the content because of the nature of the Social Media platform.
All things considered, we are by no means recommending that a brand abandon Facebook and apply Social marketing efforts in YouTube. Facebook is still an important way for brands to increase exposure, and by effectively integrating your marketing on multiple Social platforms, you can increase your ROI exponentially. The key is to take a long, hard look at what your marketing message is trying to achieve, then choose the best combination of Social platforms available, and plan accordingly so your Social efforts are complimentary to one another.