UPDATE September 18, 2018 — Facebook continues to double-down on video to keep pace with increased:
In the interest of keeping this post as current as possible, we’ve updated the following statistics to reflect the newest information available.
Facebook continues to grow, as do its video initiatives. In its Q4 2017 earnings call, the company announced its ongoing dedication to video in the next three years and drew particular attention to Facebook Watch and the launch of Watch Party, a feature which allows for shared viewing. It also announced updates to its video recommendations in order to “encourage meaningful interactions.” The changes have reportedly significantly decreased time spent on the platform.
Digital video is booming. Globally, traffic from online videos will constitute over 80% of all consumer internet traffic by 2020 (Cisco). By 2019, the total U.S. digital video advertising spend is projected to eclipse $14 billion—nearly 50% of that figure ($6.86 billion) is attributed to mobile video. And shortly after Facebook launched its livestreaming video platform “Facebook Live,” The New York Times shared the following insight:
Videos represent a potentially transformational form of journalism because they let stories unfold organically, live, and with the audience able to change the experience.
Both Facebook Live and Video have greatly impacted how we consume and deliver content on the largest social media network.
See the biggest Facebook video statistics below:
Daniel Danker, Product Director at Facebook, revealed that 1 out of 5 videos posted on Facebook is a Live video. Many of those Live video broadcasts happen within Groups, which are popular online communities within Facebook. “Video is community-centric,” he says. This demonstrates the power of live video to instantly connect both viewers and broadcasters.
As part of its latest News Feed algorithm changes, Facebook is taking concerted steps to ensure that videos on the platform, “encourage meaningful social interaction.” In an update, CEO Mark Zuckerberg explained, “We made changes to show fewer viral videos to make sure people’s time is well spent.” The company has updated its video recommendations and as a result, the total time users spent on Facebook dropped by 5%, or roughly 50 million hours a day, during Q4 2017.
Facebook’s Q2 2018 earnings report indicates 2.5 billion users use at least one of its apps: Facebook, Instagram, WhatsApp, or Messenger. Interestingly, Facebook growth has been slowing in recent years, so this increase in users is due to the popularity of Instagram and WhatsApp.
According to Facebook’s latest Q4 2017 Report, the social networking site’s total audience is now 2.1 billion MAUs (monthly active users), a 14% increase year-over-year. Although updated mobile user metrics aren’t yet available Facebook’s DAUs (daily active users) have also increased 14% year-over-year to 1.4 billion.
Nevertheless, Facebook has reported that its DAUs in the United States and Canada, its most lucrative market, have fallen. Across North American, daily users fell from 185 million to 184 million in Q4 2017.
As released in their most recent 2016 Q2 Report, Facebook’s total audience is now at 1.71 billion MAUs (monthly active users). Also released in their report:
As of January 2016, 500 million people are watching Facebook Videos each day.
Nielsen’s data shows that 47% of ad recall happens in the first 3 seconds of watching a video ad. This means that for advertisers, it’s very possible to build awareness and impact purchase intent even if a Facebook user only sees the very beginning of a video ad.
In addition, a survey from the video ad creation platform Promo found that 71% of consumers think Facebook video ads are “relevant” or “highly relevant.” This result speaks to Facebook’s impressive ad targetting capabilities; it also suggests that ad recall may be high in part because Facebook is so skilled at serving ads that align with users’ interests.
Facebook partnered with global information and measurement company Nielsen to ascertain the value of video advertising on the social network. Going beyond view counts (a typical vanity metric), Nielsen discovered that 74% of a campaign’s cumulative impact can be achieved within the first 10 seconds of a video. As Facebook puts it, “marketers should experiment with shorter ad creative to drive value for their brand.”
Facebook Live videos have an average engagement rate of 4.3%, compared to 2.2% for non-live videos. This engagement rate corresponds with our previous stat about the increase in viewing time for Live videos versus standard videos.
The instant popularity of Meerkat, Periscope, Snapchat, and now Facebook Live serves to illustrate the importance of authentic, “off-the-cuff,” and in-the-moment content with audiences worldwide. Not surprisingly, livestreaming videos on Facebook are viewed at much higher durations (3x) than non-live content. As one of the most important engagement metrics, time spent is a strong indication of what’s important and valuable to Facebook’s 1.7 billion users.
One of the most impressive Facebook video statistics demonstrates its popularity and mainstream traction. The number of videos published by U.S. users has exploded, increasing by 94% from January 2014 to January 2015. For international Facebook users, the increase in Facebook videos published is a still-impressive 75% annual growth rate.
In November 2015, Facebook hit 8 billion video views daily, doubling its figure of 4 billion from April just 6 months earlier. Each video view is counted after 3 seconds of watch time. At a linear rate, Facebook would be expected to eclipse 16 billion video views in May 2016. Facebook has recently begun to measure its video value in hours watch time (see Facebook video statistic No. 11 below).
Almost 9 of 10 Facebook videos are consumed without sound, a signal that brands should consider producing video content that can still be engaging, even in silence. To that point, Facebook found that adding captions to videos increases the watch time by 12%, on average.
Nonetheless, Facebook is beginning to test video autoplay sound as announced earlier this week despite Facebook’s own publicized research that 80% of viewers react adversely to videos with automatic sound.
To promote Facebook videos, and especially Facebook Live videos, Facebook is paying top social media influencers over $2M dollars to produce live content out of a total of $50M to well-known publishers and celebrities to do the same. Facebook’s investment in video technology and live video content serves as a strong indication about the direction Facebook thinks social media content and user behavior is heading.
As one of the recipients of Facebook’s $50M video payout, Olympic gold medalist Michael Phelps took first to the social network’s live video platform to announce his retirement from sport’s highest echelon. Phelps’s video also took home the gold for most-watched Facebook video during the Rio Olympics 2016 at nearly 4M views to date.
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Facebook’s mobile ad revenue continues to grow steadily, with 89% of ad revenue now attributed to mobile users as of Q4 2017. This is a 5% increase in mobile ad revenue since Facebook’s Q2 2016 Report.
Perhaps spurred on by its latest video and livestreaming developments, Facebook is experiencing a strong rise in advertising revenue as evinced by its 2016 Q2 Report. CEO Mark Zuckerberg prefaces the report with,
We’re particularly pleased with our progress in video as we move towards a world where video is at the heart of all of our services.
CNET attributes the popularity and growth of Facebook Video and Live to the prevalence of users accessing Facebook via mobile noting “most of these [1 billion] mobile phones have a camera on them, and since all of them are connected to the internet, they’re each a Facebook Livestream waiting to happen.” At the end of Q2 2016, Facebook’s mobile daily active users (DAUs) and monthly DAUs were 1.03 billion and 1.57 billion respectively (both figures represent at least a 20% year-over-year growth).
With users spending an average time of 50 minutes each day on Facebook (including Instagram and Messenger and excluding WhatsApp as reported by The New York Times), a 360% increase in videos populating everyone’s news feeds represents a significant uptick and trend.
In a recent Facebook Newsroom post, product manager and software engineer Vibhi Kant and Jie Xu explain that a user’s News Feed is compiled (via algorithm) by posts and content of friends and Pages the user is related to. With the advent and proliferation of Facebook Video and Live, this now popular content is being syndicated into News Feeds accounting for the rapid rise of videos across Facebook.
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Brands have experienced notable success by publishing Facebook videos—especially “native” Facebook videos (as opposed to links from YouTube videos, Vimeo videos, or video content published on other platforms).
Facebook’s 6.3% per-video engagement rate is especially impressive considering the highest engagement rates for top brands on Instagram (as determined from our Instagram Brand & Influencer Engagement Rate Case Study) span from a 1.4% (for Instagram’s top fashion brand channels) to 3.3% (for top Computer & Electronics brands on Instagram).
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Facebook recently began measuring video consumption in “hours” rather than “total videos viewed” to give interested parties a more accurate comparison between Facebook and its largest video rival, YouTube. Facebook video statistics put the amount of Facebook videos watched at 100M hours per day, YouTube earns roughly 6 times that amount (650M hours).