How to continue succeeding with video on Facebook

April 3, 2024

Today we announced updates to our video player and recommendations on Facebook. Here’s what these changes mean for how creators should create and share videos and reels on Facebook.

An updated video player is coming to Facebook - when viewers tap on a video anywhere in the app they will consistently see a vertically oriented, fullscreen video player that recommends the most relevant videos based on their interests, regardless of whether they are Reels or not.

Reels will also get controls that are available for longer videos - like fullscreen mode to easily flip into horizontal viewing, fast forward and rewind, so that viewers can watch however they like.

These changes are coming to the U.S. and Canada over the next few weeks and to the rest of the world later this year. Learn more about the new player and video experience here.

Why is Facebook making these changes?

People of all ages are watching more video on mobile, so a large majority of video consumption has shifted to vertical; we want to make sure the video experience on Facebook reflects people’s evolving preferences.

What videos are impacted by these changes?

On Facebook, you can create and share two types of non-live video:

Reels Vertical videos, often 90 seconds or less created on Reels.

Videos All other videos uploaded to Facebook. They tend to be longer and in a variety of aspect ratios.

What these changes mean for creators

High-quality and engaging videos, regardless of type and length, perform well on Facebook.

While we’ll recommend videos to people regardless of length or type, creators will notice that our updated recommendations will show even more Reels to match increased viewer demand.

What this means for how creators earn from video

We have a long history of enabling creators to make and monetize all types of video and that will continue to be true; Ads on Facebook Reels and Instream Ads will continue to pay creators for their Reels, longer videos and Lives.

As with any distribution change, we expect some creators’ earnings to go up, while others will go down. To help maximize your earnings, if you’re only in our Instream Ads program, you should join Ads on Facebook Reels so you can make the most of your monetization potential on Facebook. Opportunities to earn on Reels will continue to grow as we expand our Ads on Reels program.

Both programs are in the process of transitioning to a performance-based model, which pays creators based on the performance of the video rather than the performance of an ad. Learn more here.

How to approach video creation on Facebook:

There’s a few things you can do to optimize for the updated player and recommendation system:

Authenticity and storytelling is king: More than anything, create entertaining content that has a clear hook. Authentic storytelling is more likely to perform well, regardless of whether it’s a Reel, medium length or long video.

Start incorporating Reels: If you haven’t already, start experimenting with Reels. Reels are a great way to get discovered by new audiences and grow on Facebook.

Keep making engaging longer videos: Facebook continues to be the home for all video lengths. Although we’ll show more Reels, videos longer than 90 seconds still have a very important place on Facebook.

Share unique content: While we know creators post their content across multiple platforms, simply uploading unedited, longer content from other platforms is unlikely to perform well in the future.

Try out vertical video: Experiment with bringing your creative ideas to life in a vertical format with a 9:16 aspect ratio, regardless of the video’s length. While the new full-screen video player supports all video, most people watch vertically. If you are already posting short, vertical video on other platforms, bring it to Facebook.

Focus on engagement: Our recommendation systems favor videos that have a lot of engagement. Beyond plays and watch time, this also includes interactions such as reactions, comments and shares. Engagement is also important for performance-based payouts, which we continue to roll out to more creators.

Best practices for vertical video

If you’re interested in experimenting with vertical videos as part of your content strategy on Facebook, regardless of whether or not it’s a Reel, here are some key tools and best practices:

Record in 9:16: A 9:16 aspect ratio will help ensure that your reels and videos take advantage of the updated fullscreen player.

Make use of content you already have: It’s not always necessary to reshoot the same video twice. See if you can play around with the framing of your existing content to best bring out the story you want to tell in a vertical format.

Take inspiration from Reels: Last year we started rolling out more mobile Reels editing tools to Feed video, making it easier for video creators of all types to create dynamic and engaging content. Explore incorporating audio, text, and effects to further enhance your story.

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