5 Tips to Connect Through Authenticity and Relevance

5 Tips to Connect Through Authenticity and Relevance 3

It’s true, the one constant is change — and the world of video has been changing. Accelerated by the pandemic, the content landscape has become increasingly diverse. And video on Facebook has evolved beyond bite-sized social video. It now makes up about half of the time people spend on the platform1 — watching creator and user-generated videos, tentpole events, original content, gaming, AR/VR content and more. Advertisers have more opportunities than ever to reach their audience where consumers are spending their time, through a range of vibrant video experiences. But that raises the question, how do you stand out from the crowd?

The Power of Authenticity and Relevance For Brands

Growth in the video landscape has increased competition for attention, making it harder for brands to break through. But authenticity and relevance can help brands build stronger connections with audiences and achieve better brand outcomes. In one study on the post-pandemic shifts in consumer habits, 88% of respondents said authenticity is important when deciding which brands they like and support.2 As we have continued to evolve video opportunities on Facebook, we’ve also learned from a study by Ipsos that relevance is the #1 factor for viewers to complete a video ad.3 People are responding to messages that resonate and represent them and their interests, making them feel understood.

Growing Trends in Authentic and Relevant Video Advertising

In a study on the power of authenticity, 65% of surveyed consumers say brands must show they are culturally aware and listening to the needs of their diverse customer base.4 As this message has reverberated, we have seen a number of trends emerge among brands that share contextual and culturally relevant messages and speak with authenticity in their video ads. These tactics can help messages feel more tuned to the viewer’s life and interests, like a natural conversation. Here are some recommendations for how brands can help create authentic connections through their content:

  • Interact and connect with the community. People come to platforms like Facebook to connect with each other and with brands they love, and to create community. In fact, Facebook and Instagram are the most popular video platforms for people to connect with brands according to an Ipsos survey.5 This presents a unique opportunity to speak with and respond directly to your audience, while also offering viewers the chance to converse through tools like live video, polling and other communication features.
  • Put real people and stories in the spotlight. Doing so removes a layer of polish that can come across as artificial. It increases transparency and widens the door for more personal connections with an idea or story.
  • Speak the visual language people know and love as part of these communities. Communicate with your audience through relatable, platform-native styles, such as video captured with less focus on high production value and greater focus on relevance, including use of mobile and social tools like stickers and gifs — a trend known as lo-fi.
  • Connect in the moment. Take advantage of the ability to reach your audience with timely and culturally relevant content, as conversations are taking place.
  • Share simple and memorable ideas. Keep it simple and focused on a singular message that only you can share with your unique brand voice and creative.

As we head into winter, there will be even more competition for attention and engagement as the holidays kick off. Consider leveraging the above strategies as you plan for your end-of-year advertising campaigns. And remember to think about relevance and authenticity in your messaging to break through and build stronger connections with your audience.

To dive deeper into the trends and themes covered here, read ‘How lo-fi video ads can produce impressive results.’


1   Facebook internal data, June 2021
2   “Post-Pandemic Shifts in Consumer Shopping Habits: Authenticity, Personalization and the Power of UGC.” Stackla, Aug 2021. https://stackla.com/resources/reports/post-pandemic-shifts-in-consumer-shopping-habits-authenticity-personalization-and-the-power-of-ugc/.

3  Global Media Study, Video by Ipsos. (Facebook-Commissioned online study of over 25,000 people ages 18-64; internet population monthly users of mobile internet & monthly video viewers in AU, BR, CA, DE, FR, IN, JP, KR, UK and US), Oct-Nov 2020.

4  “The Power of Authenticity.” Fleishman Hillard, Jun 2021. https://fleishmanhillard.com/wp-content/uploads/2021/06/The-Power-of-Authenticity-2021-FleishmanHillard.pdf.

5  Global Media Study, Video by Ipsos. (Facebook-Commissioned online study of over 25,000 people ages 18-64; internet population monthly users of mobile internet & monthly video viewers in AU, BR, CA, DE, FR, IN, JP, KR, UK and US), Oct-Nov 2020.


Ivana Kirkbride
Global Director of Content Strategy & Programming
at Facebook