How to Create Engaging Videos on Social Media in 2021.

Ilia Markov
September 23, 2021 - 8 min. read

Video content is taking the internet by storm. According to the Ericsson Mobility Report, mobile video traffic currently accounts for 66% of all mobile data use globally and will rise to 77% by 2026. 

When taken together with desktop, video viewing is expected to account for 82% of all internet traffic already by 2022. Moreover, video consistently drives more engagement on social media than other marketing efforts.

Video is among the most important types of content that companies need to consider. But to make the best of it, you must have a sound video marketing strategy and know what to aim for when creating videos.

To devise such a strategy, you need to be familiar with the different social media networks, their audience, and what types of content they engage with. This will allow you to create a successful and actionable content strategy that will really capture users’ attention.

Wondering how to do that? Here’s what you need to know about creating videos on the main social networks that compel users to engage with your brand and share your content!

Video marketing strategies for the leading social media networks.

To succeed with your video marketing efforts, you need to select those video formats that work best for each particular network. This means that you need to consider: 

  • Who your main audience on the network is.
  • Which types of content are more popular.
  • How long your videos should be.
  • What the best technical specifications, such as aspect ratio, resolution, and file size of your videos are.

For a detailed overview of the best image and video dimensions and ratios for each network, see our guide on Social Media Image Sizes for 2021!

That said, here’s what you need to know about each network’s audiences and what kinds of content are most popular.

Facebook

As the biggest social media network, Facebook has a very diverse audience which potentially makes video marketing lucrative and successful. Moreover, thanks to its specific video ad targeting options, you are very likely to reach those users interested in your content. 

Some tips on how to create video content for Facebook include:

  • Intent: Create videos with a “share-first” intent, i.e. they must immediately prompt people to want to share them.
  • Engagement: Autoplay ensures that everyone sees at least the first few seconds of the video – which means that you must make them count.
  • Types of content: Apart from short promotional clips, Facebook is great for live streaming, Q&As, interviews, announcements, and reveals.
  • Native: Uploading native content is better, instead of redirecting viewers to another page that hosts the video.
  • Captions: Add captions to your videos as a majority of Facebook videos are viewed without sound.
  • Call to action: Include a clear call to action either in the description or as a button when creating video ads. 
  • Length: Videos can be as long as 240 minutes, but ideally, you should aim your promotional content to be short (15-30 seconds).

Youtube

As the second biggest social network and the world’s largest video search engine, YouTube is a must. Moreover, as part of Google, creating content for YouTube is very important for SEO purposes. 

In 2017 users were already watching a billion hours a day on YouTube, and that number has undoubtedly increased significantly since then. The network’s advertising audience is about 56% male and 44% female. In the U.S., YouTube is popular among all age groups, though more so among younger users.

Here are a few things that make the network really important for brands:

  • Intent: YouTube is extremely useful for “video discovery” – it processes about 3 billion searches monthly – which allows brands to create content that ranks organically.
  • Optimization: Videos can be optimized with closed captions, tags, and descriptions and can also be monetized.
  • Types of content: The network is great for improving a brand’s visibility and building brand awareness.
    • This can be achieved through live streams, webinars, presentations and testimonials, product features, educational videos, and narrative videos that take the viewer through a story – all with the purpose of building market authority.
  • Captions: Captions increase views and so do video thumbnails, so make sure to include captions and to create a custom thumbnail to give viewers an idea of what they can expect and to pique their interest.
  • Call to action: Always have a call to action at the end to guide viewers on what to do next – include links in the description to redirect them to your pages.
  • Length: The majority of users are mobile, so it’s best to aim for videos of up to 30 minutes at most (even though videos can be as long as 12 hours).

Instagram

In a recent statement, Adam Mosseri, head of Instagram, said that Instagram is no longer a photo-sharing app. Instead, he noted, people are turning more and more to Instagram to be entertained. 

So, to provide more entertainment and remain competitive, the network will be expanding its use of video. This means that now is the time to begin producing more video content for Instagram. 

To ace video marketing on this platform, you need to tailor it to the right audience. Most users are within the 25-34 age group, closely followed by the 18-24 age group. These together make up over half of the user base. Female and male users are almost equally represented, with the former group being slightly larger. 

A few things to keep in mind as you set out to create videos on the network include:

  • Intent: Instagram is the perfect advertising medium for brands with specific demographics, and particularly those that use the platform to follow an interest.
  • Engagement: Content must be original and creative to capture attention, and the quality of videos and photos must be kept on par to guarantee a cohesive brand experience.
  • Topics: Lifestyle topics such as travel, music, food and drink, sports, technology, fashion, as well as parenting dominate the network.
  • Optimization: Hashtags increase views and engagement, while captions and tags allow for greater optimization and discoverability – make ample use of all of them.
  • Types of content: Reels, product demos, user-generated content (influencer videos), Instagram stories, short clips from longer videos, handheld selfie videos, 30-60 second tutorials, and live videos are all popular types of content.
  • Captions: It’s best if videos are viewable without sound since they are played without sound by default. Therefore, make sure to include captions. 
  • Length: IGTV videos can be as long as 60 minutes, but as with all other networks, it’s best to feature the most critical information first since there is a 60-second time limit on posts and a 15-second cutoff on stories.

     

 
 
 
 
 
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Twitter

While it is a mostly text-based platform, video on Twitter has a significant impact and attracts more engagement. 

According to Twitter’s Q2 2021 Fact Sheet, the network has about 206 million monetizable daily active users (mDAUs). While the platform has a diverse demographic, 38.5% of users fall within the 25-34 age group. The United States has the largest number of users, significantly more than any other country in the world. 

Here’s what you need to consider when you decide to create videos for Twitter:

  • Intent: Twitter is a highly personal and engaging platform, and users expect brands to participate in the conversation on equal footing. Moreover, users are 20% more likely to expect to find a brand on Twitter than elsewhere. Your video content must reflect the highly personal nature of the platform.
  • Engagement: Videos that feature people, offer an early story arc, include topical content, and have text or subtitles all fare better.
  • Types of content: Twitter offers great possibilities for brand immersion through livestream (such as event videos), short business profile videos, Q&A video sessions, and simple entertaining videos to promote your brand.
  • Native: Due to autoplay, Twitter native posting increases engagement, so it’s best to post the videos to the platform itself than to redirect users.
  • Length: Given how dynamically users interact with the platform, and because information is bite-sized, it’s best to keep videos short – videos of up 15 seconds typically perform better (even though the maximum video length is 2 minutes and 20 seconds).

TikTok

TikTok may be the new kid on the block, but the network is already creating quite a stir, and it is one of the reasons why Instagram is moving more into video. 

TikTok’s audience is significantly represented among younger age groups, with about 50% of TikTok users being under the age of 34. Respectively, the most popular categories on the platform are entertainment, dance, pranks, fitness and sports, and various lifestyle categories. 

What’s particularly interesting about the network is that it consistently has higher engagement rates when compared to Instagram and YouTube. This makes it worthwhile for brands to grow their presence and audience, and many have already seized the opportunity.

When getting started with TikTok, you should consider the following:

  • Intent: Repurposing video materials from other networks or posting traditional (serious) ads is likely to fail here. TikTok has its own language, and to succeed, you need to be catchy and entertaining.
  • Reach: Working with influencers is sure to help you increase your reach significantly.
  • Hashtags: Creating hashtag challenges and using branded hashtags is one of the best ways to boost engagement – user-generated content serves as social proof.
  • Trends: TikTok relies a lot on trends – such as trending songs or trending types of videos that users make their versions of. Riding the wave of a trend will help you increase your brand’s visibility.
  • Length: Videos can be up to 3 minutes long, but given the fast-paced nature of the platform, people are less likely to watch longer clips unless they are really catchy.
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Make your video content count.

Video content provides brands with a great opportunity to relate to their audience in immersive and creative ways. It is immediate and makes brands more relatable and human. So it’s never too late to get started! 

Managing all your content and monitoring its performance is easier if you have a helping hand. Falcon can help you schedule, post, and track your content across a number of major networks and adapt your strategy to your audience’s interests and reactions. Want to know more? Sign up for a free and personalized demo, and let’s talk about how we can help!