Food publishers are early winners of Facebook video
Food publishers have found the recipe for success when it comes to Facebook video.
The most popular video publisher on Facebook is BuzzFeed Food, which has so far posted over 250 videos to Facebook, offering viewers step-by-step tips on how cook oddball recipes such as double stuffed pizza dogs, bacon-wrapped grilled cheese, and honey-whiskey lemonade, among many other similarly inventive creations.
Many of BuzzFeed Food’s Facebook videos were initially created for Instagram, limiting them to 15 seconds and encouraging viewers to watch them on loop. While the videos did well on Instagram, it wasn’t until they were posted on Facebook that they “blew up,” according to BuzzFeed Food creative director Emily Fleischaker. Newswhip said that BuzzFeed Food’s videos were shared 66 million times in June and watched over 390 million times overall, second only to BuzzFeed’s main Facebook account, according to data from Tubular Labs.
That success is partly a function of the brevity of the videos and the novelty of their content but also the inherent shareability of food itself.
“Food is an easy thing for people to bond over on social media no matter if they know each other really well or only know each other a little, if they’re constantly in touch or have been out of touch for a while. It’s a lighthearted topic, it’s not too serious or overtly political (most of the time),” said Fleischaker. “Not everyone wears makeup or likes to workout or is getting married or is a parent — or even likes to cook. But everyone’s gotta eat.”
BuzzFeed Food’s most popular Facebook video has been its 15-second s’mores dip recipe, which has been viewed nearly 96 million times since June. Fleischaker said that the video worked for viewers because it’s both unusual and easy to make — all the while fitting into the larger obsession around “snackwave” food on the Web. The videos are a joint effort between BuzzFeed Food and the BuzzFeed Motion Pictures video team.
Posted by BuzzFeed Food on Wednesday, June 3, 2015
Facebook said in April that users watch over 4 billion views a day, an increase from 3 billion daily views in January. Video ads on the site accounted for 22 percent of total ad spend in June, according to ad tech firm Nanigans. But Facebook’s decision to autoplay video by default, coupled with its squishy definition of a view, means that its video success comes with a few qualifications.
The advantage of Facebook video is in its viral potential. In April, food-focused video network Tastemade posted to Facebook a four-minute video detailing how to make a “no-bake Strawberry chocolate tart.” The video quickly racked in both the views and Facebook user engagement: In three months, the video has been watched 68 million times, has 1.8 million shares and nearly 100,000 comments, many of which include photos of readers’ attempts to replicate the formula. Tastemade, which is No. 4 in Tubular Lab’s Facebook video rankings, got 165 million views on Facebook in June.
“When you create something that inspires people to create that thing themselves, they want to share it,” said Tastemade head of programming Oren Katzeff. “Content that is inspirational on Facebook can lead to action. People watch what you did, duplicate it, then try to do it themselves.”
BuzzFeed’s and Tastemade’s Facebook video success is unsurprising given how well food content, which is inherently visual, has traditionally traveled on the Web. But Facebook has introduced some new challenges for publishers, which have had to tweak their videos for the new platform. Unlike on YouTube, for example, where viewers actively seek out video, video on YouTube appears in users’ feeds. BuzzFeed Video executive producer Andrew Gauthier said that videos in 15- to 50-second range work particularly well on Facebook.
“On Facebook, there’s more of a discovery element. It’s a different engagement pattern. It means we have to work a lot harder to make stuff that people see and immediately catches their eyes,” said Katzeff.
Cheat Sheet: At IAB Podcast Upfront, diverse voices take center stage while podcast advertising revenue and audiences boom
Most of the companies that presented at the IAB Podcast Upfront signaled they had or were going to add more diversity to their programming, both in hosts and content.
Member ExclusiveMedia Briefing: What media companies’ latest earnings reports say about the state of the industry
Media companies' Q1 earnings reports signaled a continued return to business as usual — for better or worse, depending on the company's digital business.
‘Brands tend to be selective’: OMG report offers options to media buyers facing upfront inventory crunch
With a tight upfront TV marketplace expected, one agency group is recommending alternatives in video and CTV.
SponsoredHow The Company Store is reimagining customer experiences for pandemic-era growth
Throughout the pandemic, some retail categories have been inherently successful. Home furnishings and décor are among them; with consumers spending so much more time at home, updates and renovations flourished. Criteo data from the first half of 2020 showed sales for items like outdoor furniture sets up 434% year over year, with other home items […]
‘You’re fixing a number, not changing the culture’: Confessions of a media exec on diversity quotas
In the rush to improve diversity rates, businesses are in danger of overlooking more fundamental ways to sustain inclusivity in the workplace, according to our latest Confessions interviewee.
‘Direct revenue driver’: How local broadcaster News 12 is partnering with Google to build a younger audience
Local broadcaster used support and funding from Google News Initiative to build a new tool that can automatically identify and feed video content into new website verticals.