Facebook videos get higher engagement, shares and organic reach - so it's the best way for businesses to maximize exposure. But uploading the wrong format can be frustrating and take more tech skills and time than you’re willing to put in - after you’ve already done the work to make the video.
With that in mind, in this post we’ll give you the quick overview of the best format for Facebook videos and some tips so you can magnify the exposure you get from each video.
The Best Formats for Facebook Videos
Facebook recommends using MP4 or MOV format videos but accepts all kinds of formats (complete list). They don’t specify why they recommend these settings but it doesn’t matter because you can upload most formats to facebook. Here’s the full list:
3g2 (mobile video)
3gp (mobile video)
3gpp (mobile video)
Asf (windows media video)
Avi (AVI video)
Dat (MPEG video)
Divx (DIVX video)
Dv (DV Video)
F4v (Flash video)
Flv (flash video)
Gif (Graphics Interchange Format)
M2ts (M2TS video)
M4v (MPEG-4 video)
Mkv (Matroska format)
Mod (MOD video)
Mov (QuickTime movie)
Mp4 (MPEG-4 video)
Mpe (MPEG video)
Mpeg (MPEG video)
Mpeg4 (MPEG-4 video)
Mpg (MPEG video)
Mts (AVCHD video)
Nsv (Nullsoft video)
Ogm (Ogg Media Format)
Ogv (Ogg Video Format)
Qt (QuickTime movie)
Tod (TOD video)
Ts (MPEG Transport Stream)
Vob (DVD video)
Wmv (Windows Media Video)
Converters to Convert Your Video to Facebook Format
Creating a video takes a fair amount of planning and time. If you find yourself in the unfortunate situation where Facebook won’t accept your video, the last thing you want is to recreate the video. Luckily, there’s several programs you can use to convert your video to a Facebook friendly format.
Movavi is a free Facebook video converter for Windows and Mac users (click here to go to Movavi)
iTube allows you to download the video from a page and then convert it to Facebook format. It’s currently only for Mac users and a license for 1 Mac for 1 year runs you about $24.95 (click here for iTube site)
Tips for Higher Engagement
According to Facebook's data, people spend 3x more time watching Facebook Live than they do watching videos that are no longer live. You can use this data by leveraging live videos in your Facebook stream (as opposed to uploading videos you’ve already done).
A big benefit of live video on Facebook isn’t just the higher engagement either.
When you watch a Facebook Live, you don’t expect a polished and professional video. You want something that’s raw and real - maybe even a little rough around the edges (#nofilter).
This authenticity not only gets more likes, views and shares, but it also means you have less work on your end. Since you don’t have to edit live videos, you can just aim the camera on your phone and begin recording. There’s no post production work to be done so once your live streams over, it's saved to your page and you can move on with your day.
This little fact also illuminates another opportunity if you prefer to do non-live videos.
For videos that you’re pre-recording and editing (adding transitions, intros, etc.) the best thing to do is upload it to YouTube and then share it on your Facebook page. YouTube accumulates over 1 BILLION hours of time watched Every.Single.Day.
That’s more than 100,000 years of content watched - DAILY.
By uploading your video to YouTube, you’re capitalizing on their massive user base and getting traffic to your website from YouTube users.
Further, people may also link to your video or share it on their blogs (if you have a blog, you should also embed it on your site), which gets your videos more SEO juice and pushes them higher in the results - and captures you even more traffic.
Finally, by sharing that same video to your Facebook Business page, you’re getting views from the users on your Facebook page and some will probably click through to learn more about you.
If you do this on a regular basis, you can get huge traffic from YouTube and Facebook over time.
The Best Programs for Editing Your Videos
If you want to film and edit your videos ahead of time, there’s a few programs we use and recommend.
Youtube has its own video editing software that’s part of their Creator Studio. The
programs super simple to use and let's you cut things out, add transitions, etc. They even include different music tracks and sound effects you can use in your videos.
Adobe Premiere Pro
Adobe Premiere Pro is an advanced video editing program that many professionals use. It comes with a steep learning curve but gives you the flexibility to do almost anything you can imagine with your videos (including export them in different Facebook friendly formats). And if you get the Adobe Creative Suite, it includes tons of other useful marketing programs like Adobe Illustrator and Photoshop.
Apple's Final Cut Pro
Apple Final Cut Pro is specifically for Mac users and does most of the same things Adobe Premiere does. Many people find this program to be more user friendly and it comes with great video transitions and intros right out of the box. The downside of Final Cut Pro is that you have to buy the whole program for $299.99 (at the time of this writing). Whereas Adobe has a subscription option that’s as low as $19.99/month if you only want Premiere Pro (at the time of this writing).
iPhone with iMovie
If you’re an iPhone user, chances are your phone came with a simple video editor already built in. Apple iMovie is one of the easiest video editors you can use if you’re filming directly on your phone. You can’t do complicated transitions or many of the things you can do on a more robust platform like Final Cut or Premiere Pro but it's fine for most people.
You can cut parts of the video out, apply simple transitions, intros/outros and add background music really easily to make your simple iPhone video stand out from the rest.
Any one of the above programs can work very well for all your video editing needs.
Our best advice is to keep it simple though. If you’re not a technical person, stay away from Premiere and Final Cut or find someone who already knows how to use the programs. Learning them isn’t necessarily super hard but it's taking time away from doing things you’re better at - like filming new videos and getting your message out there. A simple iMovie app or YouTube creator studio will suffice for creating great videos on your own as well.
One message is clear - video dominates on social. And if you’re not using it now, you may get left behind in the future.
To leverage video in your business and build a social following, consider jumping on a Facebook live once or twice a week. It doesn’t have to be daily but once you start, you should try to be as consistent as possible.
If you prefer filming your videos ahead of time so you can repurpose your content for more engagement and traffic, consider uploading to YouTube and then sharing on your other platforms (consistency also matters here). Once you build up a base of several dozen videos, you’ll likely begin noticing consistent traffic to your site and subscribers to your channel.