Video Tips and Tricks for All Social Media Platforms
Video Tips and Tricks for All Social Media Platforms
HOW TO OPTIMIZE VIDEO ON SOCIAL MEDIA
Whether you’re just starting out on social media, or you’re a veteran company with thousands of followers, optimizing content for each platform is an ever-evolving challenge. While applications continue to roll out new time limits, changes to their algorithms, and new features, staying engaged with optimization methods can help your video content reach the spotlight. So what video tips and tricks can helps across social media platforms?
As video continues to explode in popularity, social media platforms are in tough competition with each other. While photos, carousel posts, and text are still important parts of communicating with your audience, video is a chance to tell a story efficiently. So, grab your camera, and let’s dive into optimization!
Video Tips and Tricks for Social Media
Here are four things to keep in mind when designing and creating your content.
1) Have A Plan
Video content doesn’t require you to throw out any of your existing branding or marketing strategy. You still need to think about your brand colors, your key message(s), and your audience.
Whether it’s reach, sales, conversions, or just communication with customers, establishing a plan sooner rather than later is the way to go. Draw from your previous strategies, look at your highest-performing posts, and pull some data from the platforms you’re already on. What do people engage with the most? What seems to get the highest click through rate?
In most cases, it’s important to include some kind of call to action (CTA), whether a hard or a soft sell. Sometimes ‘Order Now!’ will be appropriate, while other times, ‘Learn More’ might fit. But the idea of leading people to the next step along the journey is important even with public awareness campaigns. On any social media platform, the best content will tell a brand story, highlight an important moment, or show off industry knowledge—all of these are great places to start building a video marketing plan. Garlic Media Group has a great blog related to this topic.
2) Choose the Right Aspect Ratio
For most platforms, a 16:9 (with a resolution of 1920 by 1080 pixels) will serve you just fine. This is the standard aspect ratio that you would watch on YouTube or your home TV. This ratio is a great place to start.
However, for the past few years, vertical video is on the rise, thanks to Snapchat, Instagram and TikTok. In addition, story functionality (vertical content only available for 24 hours) has been added to Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn. For vertical video, whether for a feed post—think Instagram Reels, TikTok videos, etc—as well as stories, it’s best to use a 9:16 aspect ratio.
It’s also, of course, important to consider the destination of your content. If the majority of it is being consumed via mobile, a square (1:1) aspect ratio may be preferable, and more broadly applicable. A 1:1 aspect ratio can be ideal for social media platforms that play automatically in their feed, and perhaps more importantly, it’s unlikely that a video with a square ratio will be cropped automatically.
Here are the quick & dirty reference points for best aspect ratios for each platform:
- Instagram Feed Posts and Ads: 1:1 (Square)
- Instagram TV (IGTV), Reels, and Stories: 9:16 (Vertical), 4:5 Vertical, or 2:3 Vertical in a pinch
- TikTok: 9:16 (Vertical)
- Facebook In-Feed Ads: 16:9 (Landscape) or 1:1 (Square)
- Facebook Stories: 9:16 (Vertical)
- Twitter: 1:1 (Square)
- LinkedIn: 16:9, or 1:1
- Snapchat: 9:16 (Vertical)
3) Sound, Music, and Subtitles!
There are always going to be times where consumers have the sound off, either on their TVs or smartphones. Other times, they might be scrolling or avidly watching, with full sound capabilities. Because as a creator you can’t count on either one, it’s important to think about both!
Optimizing your videos to work well with and without sound isn’t as tricky as it sounds. You can use tools like background music (royalty free or a trending piece of audio), subtitles or closed captioning, simple text and branding, a personalized voiceover—or a combination of these. Using royalty-free music and a customized voiceover in combination can provide a professional vibe, while trending audio and quirky captioning can angle more towards comedic and viral content. Closed captions or subtitles can help not only with the situations where consumers have their volume off, but also extend the reach of your content to those who are hard of hearing.
The biggest takeaway is: create your content to be viewed with sound available, but don’t count on it. Before posting, make sure to watch it back and ask yourself: Would this make sense without audio? If not—consider using another of the visual options mentioned above.
4) Keep Time In Mind
Time is a toughie—but we’ve got you covered. Content creators often struggle with a) keeping track of the limits for each platform as well as b) knowing what length of video performs the best overall.
As social media apps—particularly the video capabilities of each one—evolve, the time limits might change frequently. Fortunately, there are a couple lengths that work well as standard units: six seconds, 15 seconds, 30 seconds, and 60 seconds.
Here are the current limits for several main social media platforms as a reference:
- Instagram Feed Posts, Reels, and Stories: Maximum 60 seconds
- Instagram TV (IGTV): Maximum 60 minutes
- TikTok: Maximum 60 seconds
- Facebook In-stream Ads: Maximum 15 seconds
- Facebook Stories: Maximum 60 seconds
- Twitter: Maximum 140 seconds
- Snapchat: Maximum 60 seconds
As you can see, the majority of platforms currently have an ultimate limit of one minute. However, you should also consider what people will actually watch. In general, shorter is better! Having a hook, catchy audio, and a professional branded look are what will keep people watching, especially if the video is on the shorter side.
Video length is something that is good to experiment with, because it relates so intimately to the type of content you’re producing. Announcing a sale would fit will in a short video but sharing industry knowledge would suit a longer clip. Play around with the pairings of content and time and analyze the results as you go.
One Key Takeaway from our Video Tips & Tricks: Optimization Is A Journey
You can ‘go deep’ into video creation, whether you’re filming your own footage or automating the whole process, and the good news is that there are many ways to succeed. Finding your brand video voice, working within the limitations of each platform, and establishing a consistent posting schedule will take you far. Iteration and optimization will help you produce the best result!
To learn more about automating the video creation and scheduling process, check out the free trial of Prontopia.