Here's a helpful overview of a tool that many users are likely not aware exists.
Last September, Facebook began rolling out a new organic video post testing tool in Creator Studio, in order to help creators A/B test aspects of their video posts. And late last week, Facebook published a new overview on how to make best use of the new tool to maximize your Facebook video performance.
As outlined by product marketing manager Prab Kumar, organic post testing enables you to test different variations of a video post against one another, in order to find a 'winner' which you then publish to your Page.
As explained by Kumar:
"We know that video creators and publishers have a lot of creative decisions that they make. There's creative decisions you make about the actual video, like what's in the video, things like aspect ratio and other production-related creative decisions. And then there's creative decisions around the actual posts, like what goes into the post description, what's the title of the video, do you use emojis in your post description, what's the thumbnail."
The post testing option is designed to help answer some of these questions, by enabling you to try out different variations of your video posts, which are then shared with a sampling of your audience, based on the time allotted for each test. You'll then get insights into which post saw the most response, and you can publish that post to your full audience.
Within the post testing option - which is available in the 'Content Library' section in Creator Studio - you can create up to four variations of a video post, which, as noted, will then be 'tested' with a portion of your audience. Then, based on the parameters you set (i.e. impressions or time), Facebook will give the 'winning' post further distribution beyond its initial test audience.
As you can see on the left, within the post testing fields, you can select the key metric/s you want to test for, and the test duration. Once that test period is over, Facebook will publish the winning post to your Page, based on the metrics you've selected. The other test variants will remain in your content library but will not be published to your Page.
Currently, Facebook has five duration options for your video tests:
- 10 minutes
- 30 minutes
- 1 hour
- 3 hours
- 24 hours
Kumar says that the system will default to 30 minutes for a test, which is generally a pretty good amount of time, "but you need to work out what works best for you". Kumar advises that Page managers run tests for the shortest amount of time to see results, as this will limit the amount of people who are seeing your 'losing' posts, which will vary based on audience size.
Interestingly, Kumar also notes that you can schedule a test for a video you want to publish at a certain time.
"If you want a video to drop at around noon tomorrow, and you want to run a test for about an hour prior, you can schedule a test and the scheduling options will allow you to choose when the winner will drop to your Page, and we will backward calculate when we need to get the test running, including processing times, etc., so that the test will have results, and a winner will be posted to your Page at the time you want it."
Kumar notes that the testing tool can be a valuable way to learn what works in video content, and can help Pages maximize reach and resonance with their audience.
Kumar also provides some additional pointers, noting that users should:
- Avoid make long-term creative strategy choices based on one test
- Analyze the full results of their tests, not just their focus metrics
- Analyze your retention curves over time to ensure you're maximizing your optimization recommendations
Given the focus on video content, organic post testing could be a valuable tool in your Facebook arsenal, and considering that it's freely accessible within Creator Studio, it makes sense to try it out in order to ensure you're maximizing your video efforts.
Kumar says that post testing is being rolled out, and should be available to most Creator Studio users.