Video Marketing Lab
Handbook Experiment

Image vs. video on Facebook: We have a winner

If a picture is worth a thousand words, what is a video worth? In this experiment, we put it to the test.

The internet seems to believe video ads work better on Facebook than images, but is that true? Both mediums have their merits, sure, but in our experience, video tends to perform better.

We decided to run an experiment to test this assumption. You’ll be floored by the results.

The test

We created two ads. One was a static image with a clear message and call to action. The other was six-second video ad with a clear message and call to action. Same style, same tone, but one moves and the other doesn’t.

Both ads were made with limited assets in a very short amount of time by Ken from our social team.

Video ad

The video we created and ran in the experiment.

It’s based on a template you can edit at biteable.com.

Image ad

Our image ad is as visually similar to our video as possible.

Our ad spend

We spent $225 for each ad and targeted the same social media-focused audience groups.

How we ran the campaigns

For both campaigns, we chose leads as our objective.

In order to keep our test as fair as possible, we didn’t run our experiment on Biteable’s Facebook page. We knew that brand recognition would affect the end result. Instead, we created a pseudonym, VideoLab, to run our video and photo ads.

Both ads prompted users to sign up for a marketing handbook. We sent leads to this landing page: videolab.social.

Little did these subscribers know that they were part of a marketing experiment that would influence the content they subscribed to. Very meta. Trust us, the results were worth it.

What we found

Video got more reach

Even though we’re video-makers ourselves, the results were staggering.

The test video vastly outperformed the static image, generating over triple the leads. The video was also seen by around 25% more people, with the static ad attracting only 7,232 viewers compared to 9,532 for the video ad.

Video got more clicks

Our video ad got 186 clicks while the static image got just 32. For fans of statistics, that’s roughly 480% more clicks for the video.

Likewise, the cost per click was far lower for the video. The video ad cost $1.19 per click and the image cost $7.11, so the video was 497% cheaper per click.

On top of that, there was a drastically higher click-through rate on the video – 1.87% compared to 0.43% for the image.

Video got better ROI

Sure, clicks are a good measure of performance, but in the end conversion is the best way to assess your return on investment.

Both ads cost the same to make (5 minutes using Biteable) and the same to run, but the results speak for themselves.

Video brought in drastically more leads. 270% more, to be precise (59 versus 16).

And, more importantly, the cost per lead for the video was 280% less than the image. For the image, each lead cost $14.22 compared to $2.75 for the video.

But what does this all mean?

THEORY

Why video is scroll-stopping

Compared to text on a screen, videos catch the eye and engage viewers. On top of that, they deliver information a whole lot faster than reading text, meaning you can get your point across to viewers in seconds.

Recommendations

Use video to drive traffic and sales

In short, if you want more clicks and sales, use video instead of static images in your Facebook ads.

There’s plenty of evidence to back that up.

Social video gets over 1200% more shares than text and image content combined, especially on Facebook, where over 500 million people are watching video content daily.

Fall back on images for carousels

Of course, there are exceptions to every rule. Depending on your style of Facebook marketing, video isn’t the best way to go in every circumstance.

For instance, carousel campaigns are a very common (and successful) form of Facebook advertising. When flicking through multiple frames, it’s often much easier to tell a fluid story with multiple static images and some bold copy instead of video.

Never stop testing

Our experiment relates specifically to campaigns with leads as the objective. We believe, however, that our results are transferable to most other campaign objectives as well.

Don’t just take our word for it though. Test your existing image campaigns to see if you can get them achieving more with video. We think you’ll be pleasantly surprised by what you find, just like we were.

Get started for free at biteable.com.

Takeaways

Video outperformed image

  • 480% more clicks
  • 497% cheaper per click
  • 280% lower cost per lead

Video can probably help you

See if you can get an existing campaign performing even better by adding and testing a video variant.