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Video vs Photo: Which is best for Facebook?

Facebook is one of the top social media platforms and so it’s important to get marketing right on the site. 62% of Marketers find Facebook to be the most important social media channel for their business. Yet, organic content only tends to reach about 16% of fans. This is why so many brands choose to advertise on Facebook: to actually reach their fans and also to expand their growth through targeting. Creating ads that work for your brand involves a lot of research and time. Choosing the right tone of voice, image or video look and overall posting schedule all go into creating a great Facebook strategy that works for you. Getting Facebook advertising right isn’t down to luck after all, it’s down to testing. So, in this blog we’re going to go through the debate of which is better, photos or videos for Facebook ads. Which tend to get the best reach and engagement and which should you focus on? Let’s find out.

Do video Ads perform better?

Out of a group of marketers, 52% said they leveraged video’s more than images while 48% opted for photos more often. However, almost 60% said that for them, video tends to drive more engagement. Why is this? Some think it have have to do with the fact that videos encourage the user to stop scrolling for that extra second in order to get an understanding of the post. Consumers have got better at digesting content while still scrolling which decreases the amount of engagement. This can lead to an increase of almost 50% for link clicks and an increase in conversion by 20-30%.

This may not be due solely to the idea that photos are quicker to digest. Experts believe that Facebook is pushing video content due to its aim to become a more video-first platform. This means that the algorithm may prioritise video content compared to image content.

So should we only be posting Video?

The problem with the video vs. photo debate lies in the time and labour costs of producing such content. While videos may produce better results all-round, they are often much more labour-intensive to create, taking a long time to create something high-quality and requiring a fairly high level of investment.

A survey by databox found that videos can take an average of 2-6 hours to produce

Compared to the average image coming in at just an hour, this means an extra 5 hours of labour and resources. So, for 2x the engagement you’re spending 5x the resources.

videoWhat to do

It can be difficult to decide whether images or videos should be used within your Facebook ads, after all, this is a debate. There are clear pros and cons to both sides. However, the most important thing to do always is what works for you and your brand, what product you’re selling, what information you need to get across and what your audience likes.

You can do this by testing both types of content against each other. Keep the copy and call to action the same and only change the creative type (video or photo). This creates a controlled test that helps optimise the best click/conversion activity.

Overall it’s important that whatever content you are using within your ad, it should be of high quality. Just because you have a video in your ad doesn’t mean this ad will do well. If your ad is too long, customers will get bored and click off and if the content within the video contains typos, low-quality images and strange transitions, it will overall decrease brand trust over time which is the opposite of what you want. If you have the option between a good quality static image or a low quality video, always choose the image. Whereas, if both video and photo are both high quality, you will want to choose the video.


The lines of the video vs photo debate at blurred. On one hand, videos can produce much better conversion and engagement than photos as they encourage users to stop and watch. However, videos are also much more time consuming to create, taking an average of 5-6 hours. Photos however may have less conversion but create an hour to produce. Furthermore, it’s important to test your content and find out what works for your brand as every audience is different and want different things. Ultimately, it’s important to test content, listen to your audience and aim to create the highest quality content you can with your resources on offer.

If you want an expert to help with your Facebook posts, or any social media for that matter, get in touch with us by calling 01708 952952 or visit our website here.




Posted in Marketing News