Facebook has already dominated the social network industry and now it is going all in on video, a market in which YouTube has been reigning over for years now. The announcement was made by CEO and founder Mark Zuckerberg during a conference for investors when the executive also released record-breaking revenues of $4.5 billion and 1.55 billion users – or 22.1% of all human beings in this planet. Back to the video, these numbers are really impressive when you consider that just a year ago, Facebook had only 1 billion daily video views and back in April the company had 4 billion daily views.
These numbers are great, but they have to be swallowed with caution, and you will understand why YouTube is very strong in the game. For starters, Google and Facebook see "video views" differently – while one view on YouTube counts only after 30 seconds have been watched, Facebook count comes in with only 3 seconds. Several video views on Facebook are also thanks to the autoplay feature that makes a video play as soon as it reaches your screen in the timeline, something that is not that easy to disable. Nonetheless, Facebook has been investing a lot of effort in videos, and the results are paying off.
YouTube still has a great advantage as they offer an easy way for content creators to monetize on their videos. Back in July, Facebook unveiled an ad revenue split program for big names like NBA and Fox Sports, but the feature is still to hit the average creator. Another aspect where YouTube still has the lead is their search engine, although Facebook is also going deeper on that with a dedicated video tab on their iOS and web apps, floating videos and content discovery features like suggested videos.
As we can see, Facebook videos came to stay and they will grow stronger day after day. The social network titan still has a lot of ground to cover, and Google is obviously shaking things up to stay strong in the game. Although YouTube has over 1 billion users, it is getting easier and easier for Facebook users to watch videos on their platform. That said, it will be interesting to see how things will develop in the coming years and what features each company will introduce to gain ours (and advertisers) hearts.