Auto-playing Videos with Sound: Yay or Nay?

August 8, 2017

Facebook's Rolling Out It's Auto-playing Sound Feature

Earlier in the year, Facebook announced that it was going to make changes to the way videos worked on its platform, especially for mobile users of its app.

The biggest social networking site shared a blog post back in February, stating that they’re “focused on continually improving the video experience” for its users. This blog post also included the announcement of autoplaying videos with sound.

Facebook has said that users had “come to expect sound when the volume on their device is turned on” and that it would slowly bring sound to the News Feed of all users.

Although the site does offer the option to turn off the given feature, it’s roll out of the update has received a bit of a backlash.

Have people really come to expect sound in the News Feed?

Autoplaying videos announcement from Facebook

Video has become such a big part of how people use Facebook, that this change was never going to go unnoticed – quite literally, considering videos in the News Feed will play out-loud whether you like it or not.

Facebook users have taken to social media to express their dislike for the latest video update, with some exclaiming “literally nobody asked for this” and that it reminded them of auto-playing videos on MySpace.

Which leads to us wonder why Facebook actually made the call on auto-playing videos with sound…

Well, it was first tested in the News Feed and gained positive feedback, so maybe it’s not all doom and gloom! There must be a bunch of people out there than genuinely do like the new feature.

What does this mean for marketers?

On average, you and I have an attention span of about 8 seconds. It’s really not a lot of time to catch someone’s attention, so you have to get it just right.

That being said, video trends on social media are forever changing; we’ve seen the increase in videos adding subtitles as videos began to autoplay without sound. This is quite the opposite though!

Although we can understand why users may get frustrated with Facebook’s update, it has to be said that it simply is a new way of engaging an audience. The video will catch the attention of the viewer if it plays with the sound on. However, if the user is in a situation where they simply do not want the video to play out loud, they’re likely to skip past the video completely.

If someone is in public or at work they are unlikely to want the videos to play with sound. It is widely known that visitors usually despise autoplaying videos that blare out at them when exploring a site, but the autoplaying with sound feature is actually super easy to turn off.

With that said, it’s important to remember that not everyone will be viewing video on Facebook in the same way. Some will turn the sound off, some won’t. Facebook are showing no signs of slowing down with their investment in video, and it looks as if it’s set to be a big part of Facebook’s future.

Existing video content

Your previous video content may not work as well in the Newsfeed and you may need to do some updating to fit in with the ever-changing trends of social media. Social media is forever changing; we’re sure it won’t be long before Facebook announce a new video platform update.

Until then, make the most of what Facebook has to offer – we can’t rave enough about the benefits of video on Facebook!

Written by Jo Ginger

Like to know more?

Let us know a few details about your project

Give us a call on 01488 670244 to discuss your project