How to Increase Engagement on Facebook Videos

How to Increase Engagement on Facebook Videos

If people aren’t engaging with your content, this strategy will not be effective. If you have videos that require audio, you could always add captions asking viewers to turn the sound on to experience the video in a better way. I also like this example because it’s a shared post. The reason why you want people to share your content is it drives even more engagement when it’s viewed by more users. With the preferred audience, you’ll be able to reach users based on factors such as the pages they’ve liked and their interests. You can take this strategy one step further by publishing Facebook video ads. Descriptive videos will also increase your chances of being seen through organic searches on the platform. Some of your videos will be better than others. Since the vast majority of Facebook videos are played without sound, you need to add subtitles to optimize them for silent viewing. Take advantage of the preferred audiences feature to make sure your videos are shown to relevant viewers.

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Videos are a crucial component of your content marketing strategy. Once your videos are created, you need to distribute them on as many channels as possible.

With more than 2.2 billion monthly active users, it’s only logical for Facebook to be one of those distribution platforms.

Overall, this should be a winning strategy for your business. Here’s why.

According to research, 90% of consumers report that videos help them making purchasing decisions. And 64% of people say that watching a video increases their chances of buying something.

Further, 77% of businesses are using videos on their social media channels. Consumers are used to seeing this type of content from brands.

By using videos to improve your social media marketing strategy, your company will be able to:

  • generate leads
  • create brand awareness
  • increase website traffic
  • drive sales

But there’s a catch. You can’t assume that all your videos will be effective just because you published them on Facebook.

Your videos need to drive engagement.

If people aren’t engaging with your content, this strategy will not be effective.

Fortunately, there are plenty of ways for you to increase the engagement rates of your Facebook videos. That’s what inspired me to write this guide.

Use this as a reference to help you produce better videos moving forward and fix some of the videos you already shared. Here’s what you need to do.

Add subtitles

Usually, good audio is a key factor of a good video. Spoken words and other sounds can help you convey a message.

But if you’re relying on audio to drive engagement on Facebook videos, it’s going to be a problem.

That’s because 85% of videos on Facebook are watched without sound.

If people are speaking in your video, you need to add subtitles to the video. Even if your video doesn’t have people speaking, you can use subtitles as a way to narrate your video.

Explain what’s happening. Your video must be optimized for silent viewing.

Plus, Facebook videos automatically start playing on mute when users scroll through news feeds on both desktop and mobile devices.

If your videos require volume to get the message across, it could be why your engagement rates are so low.

Here’s an example of how Forbes Magazine used subtitles on this Facebook video:

forbes1 1

Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson is speaking throughout this entire video. But even those watching with the sound off will receive his message.

Here are the detailed instructions for how to add closed captions on Facebook.

You can also do this manually with editing software such as:

  • Adobe
  • Final Cut Pro
  • Animoto

Knowing that most people watch videos on silent on Facebook will change the way you produce content.

If you have videos that require audio, you could always add captions asking viewers to turn the sound on to experience the video in a better way.

Here’s an example from Tasty:


You don’t need to completely abandon audio. I’m not saying you should start creating videos without sound.

Just make sure they are optimized for silent viewing. Adding subtitles or captions is the easiest way to do that.

Publish a square format

Square videos have a 1:1 ratio. This format is much better for mobile users.

Why is this important?

Well, 92% of Facebook users access it on their mobile devices daily.

When square videos are played on these devices, they take up more real estate on the screen.

But engagement rates are higher on square videos on both mobile and desktop devices.


Furthermore, square videos have an average higher reach on mobile and desktop devices compared to landscape and letterbox formats.

The only time when a landscape video outperforms a square video is when it comes to the average completion rate on desktop devices.

Do you want people to watch your videos in full? Absolutely.

But remember, we’re trying to drive engagement.

Square videos still have a higher completion rate on mobile devices. If your desktop completion rate is the only metric that might suffer here, it’s still worth it to publish square videos.

It’s also worth noting that square videos get more average views per post on Facebook than landscape and letterbox videos combined.

Grab attention early

If people aren’t intrigued by your content within the first few seconds of your video, they won’t watch the whole thing and engage with it.

Avoid slow starts. Put your most interesting shots right in the beginning to pique viewers’ interest from the get go.

Here’s a great example of a video that Thrillist shared via the Matador Network:

attention early
As you can see, this video has more than 75 million views.

This perspective is amazing. It’s the type of shot that nearly makes you gasp when you see it.

Notice the progress bar. This is shown in the opening seconds of the video.

As a result, viewers will stick with the video because their attention has been grabbed early on.

This video also illustrates one of my previous points about subtitles.

If you look at the bottom right corner of the screenshot above, you can see that by default, the volume is muted. But you can still understand what’s happening from…