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Facebook Live delivers on organic promises

It’s been nearly 4 months since Mark Zukerberg announced he was changing the way Facebook works. “I am changing the goal I give our product teams from focusing on helping you (Facebook Users) find relevant content to helping you have MORE MEANINGFUL SOCIAL INTERACTIONS (with each other)” he said – and Facebook Marketing would never be the same again.

As us Social Media Marketers raked through the wreckage for crumbs of comfort, the distinction between video and “live” video seemed to offer an organic lifeline. Zuckerberg and Mosseri (Head of Newsfeed) , in exchanges relating to the role of these content types made it pretty clear that whilst video consumption was essentially a passive experience and therefore incompatible with the goal of facilitating “more meaningful social interactions between people”, live video was different and would be treated as such. It drives six times more interaction than pre-recorded video and these interactions are, in Facebook’s terms, meaningful. They are often for example between users watching a live stream rather than a brand and a user – a key distinction for Facebook.

So what’s actually happening out there in the timelines? Is Live driving greater organic reach? Our most recent live-streams for client brands (we’ve stepped up their frequency as a response to Facebook Zero) are yielding upwards of 20% organic reach as a percentage of total Page Likes and whilst this is only slightly up on pre-Facebook Zero performance its well ahead of posts where images are static or pre-records. In addition CPM Paid Reach on Live is 20% lower than for pre-records, suggesting that not only is Facebook rewarding the use of Live organically, its reducing the cost of Paid Social relative to non-Live too.

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