Facebook Videos vs. YouTube Links, Which is Better?

Published by Engagement Labs on October 3, 2014

The short answer is another question: which platform will yield the best SEO? Business-wise, posting a YouTube link on your Facebook business page is important, but are you doing so to simply spread the word or because you think Facebook has stronger SEO than YouTube to capture views versus posting on YouTube alone?

Those purporting YouTube as having the advantage claim that those looking for a video will search for it directly on YouTube. It is also believed to be easier to share YouTube videos across several popular Social Media sites, including Facebook, which would create more links driving people to your videos. You can only share Facebook videos on Facebook. Furthermore, when new videos are uploaded, YouTube shares the information with your subscribers. Adding external links to YouTube will drive people to your various ‘homes’ online, such as social media pages, your business website, etc. Also, adding GEO modifiers and keywords to your YouTube video links will enhance search engine rankings.

By contrast, those touting Facebook Video for SEO as the frontrunner in this discussion point to the fact that videos on Facebook can be tagged so they show up on your friends’ Facebook pages (this can also occur with YouTube video links shared on Facebook). As well, videos on Facebook can go viral easier than on YouTube due to the built-in capability of allowing the videos to be shared with the ‘like’ feature, creating more links on ‘friends’ and ‘fan’ pages. Facebook videos can also be embedded on websites and blogs.

Consider though, that the general consensus is that Facebook isn’t the destination, it’s the platform you use to get there, so keep in mind that if you want to maximize views of your video, posting it on Facebook seriously limits your potential audience. However, Facebook is about so much more than video. They’re about relationships, so their videos are largely for personal viewing and hardly their core business. YouTube, on the other hand, is entirely devoted to video hosting. As social behavior becomes more and more crucial to video success, unique visitors to Facebook video should fall, and should continue to fall. The videos best-positioned for success are the ones with the most flexibility. Facebook video, as a hosting option, could not be any less flexible if it tried.

Some might say Facebook has all the power – while some people may chance upon a file uploaded on YouTube while browsing, those odds are low, since viral video doesn’t happen without social behavior. Great videos die without social traction, while mediocre ones with tons of social behavior can go nuclear. That’s why YouTube and most other content-related sites include so many social options below each video.

If using video as part of a social media campaign, then YouTube would seem to be the better choice. However, given that most marketing and social media strategies include elements besides video, a comprehensive strategy with the potential for high impact will incorporate both Facebook and YouTube, synergizing the two.Sure, sounds like we’re sitting on the fence on this one, but there really is no winner.

What do you think? Please drop us a line. contact@engagementlabs.com

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About eValue™:

The eValue™ score measures the effectiveness of a brand’s overall social media performance on Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and Instagram and provides a score from 0 – 100. It’s the aggregate of the three subscores including Engagement, Impact, and Responsiveness that work together to create one top-level KPI. Our subscores are calculated by using hundreds of sub metrics which are then benchmarked against a hand-picked database of 75,000 verified brand accounts on each channel.

Engagement: Measures the level of interaction generated by your content and how well your community reacts to it.

Impact: Measures how many unique users have potentially been exposed to a piece of content posted by the channel’s admin through organic, viral and paid reach.

Responsiveness: Measures the rate, speed and quality of your responses to fans.