The Ultimate Social Media Video Guide in 2021

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Author: Matt Jasper
Date: June 19, 2021

Video Production for the socials.

Video is one of the most important aspects of your social media marketing. It's no secret that people are watching more and more content on their phones, tablets and laptops every year. In fact, 78% of people watch online videos every week, and 55% view them every day.

Customers prefer videos because they can be made full of emotion, captivating, and exciting. While content writing is important, videos can do so much more in terms of engagement and connection with the customer, which can ultimately lead to more sales.

As a marketing tool, then, video should be a no-brainer, but it’s not just a matter of loading your existing content onto your preferred social media outlet. Each platform has different requirements such as the length of video allowed or the specs such as whether the preferred format is square, horizontal or vertical. While it might seem overboard to have to create various videos for every platform and upload them individually, it will help you get the best results.

Melbourne Video Production Studio with videographer Matt Jasper
Melbourne Video Production Studio with Bec Bower

Social Media Videos Vary Depending On The Network

Each platform treats video slightly differently, which means you'll need to adapt your strategy to the social media platform you intend to use. We've broken down each to help you maintain high-quality regardless of the platform you choose. 

  1. Facebook Videos

Facebook is one of the most popular social media platforms in the world, with more than 2.85 billion users. When you post to Facebook however you need to be aware that it will only show your videos to your followers (and not all of them unless it gets great engagement) or friends of followers unless you pay for advertising.

Facebook videos are primarily for entertainment, not for more “serious” purposes such as explaining a process in detail. It's important to remember always to add caption because most people on Facebook prefer to watch videos without any sound.

Facebook Video Length: A Facebook video cannot be longer than 240 minutes. Most range from five to 45 minutes.

Facebook Video Specs: The general recommendation for videos on Facebook is 1280 x 720 pixels which supports in-stream ads, slideshow ads, and Messenger ads. However, if you're trying to upload a Facebook 360, the pixel recommendation is 4096 x 2048.

The best way to add videos natively on Facebook is by uploading them as square format or vertical orientation. This helps ensure your video is compatible with both mobile screens and desktop.

  • YouTube Videos

YouTube is a social network where videos are the main form of communicating with others. It's the second-largest search engine, right behind Google. The best part of YouTube is that it's very accommodating to content you may have already created instead of having to modify them for the platform.

YouTube videos are usually used for entertainment, skits, and how-to or informational content. It's a great platform to explain products in more detail or to show customers how to use your offerings. You can even split your videos into various playlists to make it easy for users to watch your content.

YouTube's Video Length: There’s no length restriction on YouTube. In fact, the longest video currently on YouTube is 596 hours long! However, successful YouTube creators find ways of making their videos at least 12 minutes long in order to capture a larger audience and create more engagement.

YouTube Video Specs: The best way to add videos on YouTube is by uploading them in a horizontal orientation. It uses a widescreen format of 16:9, which helps ensure your content is compatible with both mobile screens and desktops. For sizing, you'll want to use 1920 x 1080 to optimize properly.

  • Instagram Videos

Instagram's platform is based on images and videos instead of text content. Therefore, it's essential to create unique content that is pleasing to the eyes to attract the audience you want on this platform.

Two of Instagram's most prominent features are its stories and reels. Stories, short videos of 15 seconds or less will disappear forever after 24 hours. Reels, on the other hand can be up to 60 seconds and won’t disappear from your profile.

When brainstorming ideas for your Instagram video content, you should ensure your content is visually stimulating and grabs your users' attention instead of long informational videos.

Instagram Length: The longest video you can post is a 60-minute video on Instagram if you have a verified account. However, the most popular videos on the platform are between 30 seconds and 3 minutes. Normal video posts can’t be longer than 60 seconds otherwise they tip into Instagram tv territory and users will need to click through to watch it all.

Instagram Specs: The best way to upload videos on Instagram is by uploading them using a vertical orientation. Instagram uses a widescreen format of 9:16, which helps ensure your video is compatible with multiple devices. However, you can still create ads in square (1:1) or landscape (1.91:1) format.

  • Twitter Videos

Twitter is known for its short, to-the-point ‘tweets’ comprised of 280 characters. Videos on Twitter are quite different from Instagram or YouTube because they are not the primary focus. Instead, videos tend to be supplementary and are typically used to convey an important political point, piece of news, or compelling statement.

Videos on Twitter should be short and sweet, almost like an exciting preview of the full content. Since these videos can be tweeted with a link attached, most users create snippets of the video they want to share with users with a link that will take their audience to watch the full content outside of the Twitter application.

Twitter Video Length: The maximum length for Twitter videos is 2 minutes 20 seconds, and the most popular videos are 30 seconds long. This is because Twitter thrives on short, to-the-point content, not long videos.

Twitter Video Specs: It’s best to upload Twitter videos at 1920 x 1200 or 1200 x 1920 pixels, using vertical format. If you prefer portrait, you should post at 720 x 1280 and square at 720 x 720.

  • TikTok Videos

This year's trendiest video platform is TikTok, with more than 850 million active users and the average user opening the application eight times every day. Needless to say, there is a ton of traffic on TikTok. Unlike other social media platforms, TikTok is purely video-based. The app allows users to create 60-second videos with a variety of different filters and styles.

TikTok thrives on creativity, fun trends, and valuable information. Users love learning and hearing stories on the platform so it's essential that all videos have sound, use popular songs, or incorporate popular trends.

TikTok Video Length: Users can only post up to 60 seconds of content on the platform at one time. However, these limitations are what make TikTok so unique for short bursts of creativity. If you're a verified user, you may be able to post videos up to 3 minutes in length.

TikTok Video Specs: Videos on TikTok should be uploaded using a 9:16 aspect ratio with a size of 1080 x 1920 pixels. Your videos should be vertical since that's the only type of videos that TikTok shows. If you post something smaller, they will upload as square crops, which may distort your image when watching them later on another device.

Tips For Social Media Video Success

  • Narrow down the number of social media accounts you plan to have. It's not necessary to be on every social media platform. Instead, choose based upon where your target audience likes to hang out the most.
  • Only make video production content that attracts your customers. Consider hiring a reliable company to help you with the process.
  • Be sure to use popular songs, captions, and incorporate trending topics into the videos you're creating, so they're relevant enough to get people watching them in droves.
  • Encourage creativity by providing your audience lots of different types of videos that will inspire their posts while keeping yours fresh as well (e.g., comedy sketches, how-tos).
  • Create multiple pieces of content at one time so that you can schedule and spread out the content on your social media platforms. If you are using a video production company they should be providing value by filming more than one video in a day.
  • Upload natively to each platform, don’t just share a video from your YouTube page.
  • Know what you want to achieve from your video production before you press record on the camera so you can measure its success or failure. If it doesn’t work, try something different next time.
Sydney Video Production content for Be Slavery Free
Sydney Video production for Be Slavery Free

Videos Are Essential for Social Media Success

The best way to interact with your customers is through video. While it takes more time and money to create a compelling piece of content for social media videos, it's worth the investment as you'll find that your engagement and interaction with your audience dramatically increases.

Video is becoming more popular on Facebook than photo posts, Instagram has surpassed Snapchat as the number one platform for video views, and YouTube now offers live streaming capabilities that give you an edge over your competition. In 2021 it's estimated that almost 80% of internet traffic will comprise online video content, so take this opportunity to get ahead by developing engaging videos before your competitors do!

At the Jasper Picture Company, we have a team of talented videographers, video editors and video producers who are skilled at creating video content for social media. They can shoot in square, vertical, and horizontal formats to ensure compatibility across all platforms. Working with our video production company is a guaranteed way to find the results you're searching for from your video marketing campaigns. Set up a call today to find out how we can work together to create the video of your dreams.

Remember, like any video production content, the viewer will very rarely remember what someone says in a video, but they will remember what they feel. Make your videos powerful, make your viewers feel something, and you are well on your way to video marketing success.

While you are here why not check out our blog on Creating video for not-for-profits

It is also worth knowing that we have professional videographers in every state of Australia, and we have a Melbourne video production studio ready for your next project.

If you require Sydney video production content, please click here.

If you require Brisbane video production content, please click here.

For video production anywhere else in Australia please head here.

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