Try the world's #1 social media & content marketing app Get started (it's free)

10 Video Marketing Experts Share How to Get Started with Video on Social Media

Facebook and Snapchat both get over 7 billion video views a day, which is almost as many or more views than YouTube. Twitter’s video has transformed one-on-one communication, personal branding and brand communication. LinkedIn isn’t very far behind in this trend, after having released native video for its timeline earlier this year.

If you want to make an impact on social media, you need a video marketing strategy. But where’s the best place to start? There are multiple video distribution platforms, video content ideas and goals to choose from, and it can be hard to make choices and get started.

That is why I asked 10 video marketing experts the following questions.

1. What’s the first thing you should do after you have decided to invest in videos for social media and how?

2. What’s the ideal length for a social media video, and what should it contain?

3. What are your top tips for creating video content for social media?

Read what they had to say in this post.

Tyler-square-sm-new
Tyler Sprunk
Chief Marketing Officer
Simple Strat

Expert tip – The easiest way to get started with social video once you have your strategy laid out is to repurpose some of your existing content – website pages, blog posts, podcast episodes, whitepapers or ebooks, email newsletters, and any other content your company has already produced.

1. What’s the first thing you should do after you have decided to invest in videos for social media and how?

The first thing you should do after making the decision to invest in videos for social media is develop your strategy. Start this process by laying out your overarching goals. Are you hoping the videos will increase engagement, drive more traffic to your website, educate your audience about your products, or something else entirely? The answer to this question will help you determine whether you’ll need detailed how-to videos, fun company culture videos, or some other type of content.

After you’ve established your goals, you’ll want to spend some time reviewing your target audience(s). Make sure you know which social platforms they use most often and what type of content they’re most likely to respond to.

The easiest way to get started with social video once you have your strategy laid out is to repurpose some of your existing content. Take a look at your website pages, blog posts, podcast episodes, whitepapers or ebooks, email newsletters, and any other content your company has already produced and review which of those pieces are your top performers. Then, use them as a starting point for your first social videos. This will save you a ton of time you would otherwise spend coming up with video ideas and writing scripts, it ensures that your first videos are about the things you know your audience responds to.

At Simple Strat, we use select blog posts as inspiration for short Facebook videos and use Facebook live to introduce and discuss premium content such as an ebook or guide. This helps us drive traffic to our site and generate more leads with our premium content offers.

2. What’s the ideal length for a social media video, and what should it contain?

The ideal video length depends on the social network you’re using, the type of video content you’re sharing, and your target audience. As a general rule of thumb, Instagram and Twitter videos should be short (30-45 seconds), Facebook videos should be a little longer (about 1 minute), and YouTube videos should be your most in-depth content (about 2 minutes).

Remember that many of these platforms will begin playing your video without sound, and that people are often encountering your video as they’re scrolling through their feed. This means that your videos must be engaging within the first few seconds, without relying on sound. I find it usually works best to open with an action shot that’s visually interesting to catch your audience’s attention.

3. What are your top tips for creating video content?

Tip 1: In most cases, you don’t need to worry too much about high-quality video production when you’re starting out with social media video. Often, the best performing videos on social media were shot with a smartphone. These kinds of videos tend to feel more authentic and can help to engage your audience. Just make sure the camera is steady and the audio sounds good and you’re set!

Tip 2: Don’t use the same videos for every social platform. A short teaser video will work much better on Twitter than YouTube and an in-depth how-to video would be out of place on Instagram.”

Caitlyn
Caitlin Thayer
Project Manager & Social Media Strategist
UCSA International 

Expert tip – If you’re doing live video, it should be between 5-10 minutes long. That gives people time to see the notification that you’re live and click over to see what you’re up to.

1. What’s the first thing you should do after you have decided to invest in videos for social media and how?

After you’ve decided to create and share videos on Facebook, the first step is to jump in and make a video! These days, no one expects professional, commercial-quality videos. You can create an awesome video for social just by using your cell phone and a simple editing software like WeVideo.com.

As you create your video, in order to make it look as great as possible, think about lighting, the setting, and the stability of the camera. You want to make sure that the subject of the video is well lit, but not back lit. You want to make sure that the setting is interesting, and that there’s not a lot of ambient noise (like trucks rumbling by).

Think about investing in a small tripod to hold the phone, which not only keeps it stable during the video, but also means you can do this without any assistance! If you’re brave, try doing live video. Facebook loves when people do live video, and you’ll get even more attention because Facebook will alert your friends and followers that you’re live, which means you’ll get more views!

It can be scary to go live, but keep in mind again that no one is expecting a super professional video, they just want to hear from you! Once you’re ready to go, create a concept and make it happen!

One of my favorite videos that I’ve made, back when I was first getting started in video, was to promote Marshmallow Golfing at a Spring Fling event. We could have made something boring, but decided to do something more fun with it.

2. What’s the ideal length for a social media video, and what should it contain?

If you’re creating a video to upload to social media, you want it to be as quick and snappy as possible. The average person will watch a video for only 3 seconds, so you have to capture their interest early.

Think about the videos that you see coming out from Buzzfeed and Feedly, and imitate some of those aspects like using moving captions. I’ve seen a lot of success creating 10-15 second videos that quickly showcases what we want to get across, with sliding captions that I added using WeVideo.com.

If you’re doing live video, it should be between 5-10 minutes long. That gives people time to see the notification that you’re live and click over to see what you’re up to. Something I do often, that people really like, is sharing an event, lecture or workshop that’s happening. If someone wasn’t able to attend, they get to see the content anyway!

Recently, in Amesbury, MA, a group of businesses and artists worked together to restore and paint a piano to put in the middle of town. I did a live video showing the piano in Market Square, with a pianist playing and the people from the community that came out to see it. It worked really well because people felt included in the event, even if they weren’t able to be there!

3. What are your top tips for creating video content?

Practice talking in front of a camera before you film or go live. Pretend like you’re talking to a friend, rather than a camera.

It can be nerve-wracking to be on video, so the more you practice, the more comfortable you’ll feel! And if you’re doing live video and you’re filming it yourself, selfie-style, you’ll definitely want to make sure you get the angles right so your viewers aren’t looking up your nose the whole time😊.

Eric Johnson
Eric Johnson
Digital Marketer
FeedbackWrench 

Expert insight – Great Facebook posts are always hyper-relevant. Users stop to watch videos that remind them of friends, promote their hobbies, align with their beliefs, and so on.

1. What’s the first thing you should do after you have decided to invest in videos for social media and how?

After deciding to invest in video production, it’s necessary to decide on a strategy. This doesn’t have to be overly complicated, though. The most important thing to determine is what kinds of videos you’re going to shoot and why you’re going to shoot them.

Videos that are published without a single, clear purpose will almost always fail on social media. Determine whether your video is meant to entertain, inspire purchasing decisions, drive donations, etc. With a clear focus in mind from day one, it will be much easier to keep the video focused and allow for it to be successful.

When I was working for a grocery retailer, I decided that it would be fun to see the store from a 2-year-old’s perspective. However, I knew that this video, if it was going to work, had to be focused strictly on engaging an audience.

It wasn’t designed to drive any sales or motivate purchases. Instead, it was created to be a lot of fun so that our audience would interact with and enjoy it. This video turned out to be one of the most successful posts ever on the page, but we can only say that because we knew what our goal was before we distributed it.

2. What’s the ideal length for a social media video, and what should it contain?

The ideal length for a video on social media is usually anywhere from 15 seconds to two minutes. Since engaging an audience is important to Facebook’s algorithm, videos shorter than fifteen seconds don’t do a lot of long term good. However, Facebook users are not loyal viewers, and investing in anything longer than two minutes is unlikely to be worth the trouble.

Facebook videos should contain a strong opening image. By nature, Facebook video viewers are looking for an excuse to move on and explore the rest of their feed. The only thing that will stop them from doing so is the idea that they’re going to see something interesting. Whenever I’ve produced a video, I know I’ve done something right when I can see that the average view time on my videos has risen significantly over that of the other films I’ve produced.

A Facebook video should also contain an idea, image, or expected outcome that’s extremely relevant to your followers. Great Facebook posts are always hyper-relevant. Users stop to watch videos that remind them of friends, promote their hobbies, align with their beliefs, and so on. Make sure to consider your audience and their interests, and you’ll find that your videos work better than they ever have before.

3. What are your top tips for creating video content?

As an additional tip, I’d suggest experimentation… Every single audience is different, and sometimes, it’s possible to successfully break the rules. For instance, while short form content is king on Facebook, certain pages and public figures are able to get away with using longer form content. As you work on your video strategy, never be satisfied with where you are. Continually look to improve and innovate so that you can stay on top.

Adam
Adam Aigbokhae
Inbound Marketing Strategist
Six & Flow

Expert tip – Consumers are bombarded with so much information in their social media feeds, that they tend to become snow blind swiping through. Create genuinely helpful content, but also style it in a way that grabs their attention and makes them slam down their thumb.

1. What’s the first thing you should do after you have decided to invest in videos for social media and how?

As soon as you have decided to create a video, you need to figure out who you are creating the video for and what you want to tell them. This may sound obvious, but a lot of companies create content that is too obscure and fails to translate to a wider audience.

We always start with a persona of our ideal customer. We look at the language they use, their likes and dislikes, what their key pain is, and what we can offer them as a solution. Once we have this information, we can tailor our video content to hit all the right triggers.

Next, you need to look at what type of video you want to make. You may want to have JJ Abrams direct your video, but realistically, it’s probably going to have slightly less panache (and a slightly lower budget). You need to figure out what you can produce with the resources at hand. For instance, we use Animoto to produce videos in-house inspired by certain blog posts, allowing leads to consume existing content through a different medium.

2. What’s the ideal length for a social media video, and what should it contain (a few ideas of what has worked best for you)?

As annoying as this answer is, the ideal length of a video is as long or short as it needs to be. If you have a complex message for an engaged audience, you probably need a longer video. If you’re making a promo video or product launch, then make it short, sharp and punchy.

More importantly, you need to consider whether your video needs to contain subtitles. With 85% of Facebook videos reportedly watched without sound, it’s essential that your message makes it through to your audience – whether or not they can hear you.

3. What are your top tips for creating video content?

My biggest tip for video would be to make it ‘thumb stopping.’ Consumers are bombarded with so much information in their social media feeds, that they become snow blind swiping through. You need to create genuinely helpful content, but also style it in a way that grabs their attention and makes them slam down their thumb.

Kent Lewis
Kent Lewis
President & Founder
Anvil Media

Expert tip – Always ensure your videos are properly optimized for maximum visibility, leveraging keywords in the Title, description and tags. Also syndicate the videos across social media and incorporate into electronic collateral, including signature files, newsletters, website and blogs.

1. What’s the first thing you should do after you have decided to invest in videos for social media and how?

The first step in building a video program is developing a strategic plan. Assess your internal assets and map them against your needs, which should be driven by marketing objectives, target audience needs and expectations, available resources and budget.

Ideally, build out authentic, unique and compelling video content for all four steps of the sales funnel: awareness, interest, intent and purchase. The two articles below elaborate on these concepts and more.

Creating and Optimizing Videos for the YouTube Sales Funnel
What a 9-year-old taught me about marketing with digital video

2. What’s the ideal length for a social media video, and what should it contain (a few ideas of what has worked best for you)?

Based on our experience creating and marketing videos for clients over the past 17 years (yes, even before YouTube), the ideal length for social media videos is 30-120 seconds. Shorter videos are ideal for Instagram (15-60), mid-range videos for Facebook (45-90) and longer-form videos work well on YouTube (60-120+) depending on audience, objective and context.

3. What are your top tips for creating video content?

Always ensure your videos are properly optimized for maximum visibility, leveraging keywords in the Title, description and tags. Also syndicate the videos across social media and incorporate into electronic collateral, including signature files, newsletters, website and blogs.

Danielle
Danielle Kunkle
Vice President
Boomer Benefits

Expert insight – You don’t have to spend a fortune on videographers or editors. Live videos, even those done from your iPhone, resonate with your viewers because they are authentic.

1. What’s the first thing you should do after you have decided to invest in videos for social media and how?

I’m an entrepreneur who just started using video for our agency in the last year. Here are my tips: The first thing you should is to find some training online. Check out YouTube -there are tons of free how-to videos that you can watch for a little education.

You don’t have to spend a fortune on videographers or editors. Live videos, even those done from your iPhone, resonate with your viewers because they are authentic.

Invest in a webcam and a good DSLR camera so that you can film both recorded video and live video. You’ll also want some video editing software. There are free or inexpensive software programs like Movie Maker or iMovie that you can start with on a budget

2. What’s the ideal length for a social media video, and what should it contain (a few ideas of what has worked best for you)?

We try to keep our videos under 5 minutes. If it’s a short educational video or ad, stay under 2 minutes. If it’s educational as part of a video series, 5 minutes seems to work well.

3. What are your top tips for creating video content?

Always plan ahead for live video – know what you will cover so that you don’t freeze on camera. What’s the purpose of the video – figure that out and work backwards from it to come up with your script. It’s ok to look at your notes while on camera!

The biggest tip is to just to smile and be real – that’s what people really want.

Peter Chung
Peter Chung
Founder, Social Media Consultant
TheSocialPanda

Expert tip – As for content, the main thing to focus on is what makes your product or service unique – the main value proposition. A simple way to find your value proposition is to ask yourself the following question: “If we had to sell our product or service using only one sentence, what would that sentence be?

1. What’s the first thing you should do after you have decided to invest in videos for social media and how?

The first thing you should do after you have decided to invest in video content for your social media is to decide what the primary objective is. Using videos for social media is marketing, and you can’t market effectively without understanding both the audience you’re trying to reach and the objective you’re trying to achieve.

The first thing we do when our agency does this for clients is to ask “What kinds of videos would the consumer like to see that would help them buy?”. By answering this simple question, you begin to think from the buyer’s perspective and can begin to plan and craft video ideas that will appeal to them.

If your primary objective is just to have video flyers or promotional material, then short-form videos will suffice. If your goal is to have a large PR campaign or intimacy campaign with your followers, then longer-form content will be necessary.

Keep in mind that investing in video content should be an ongoing process for your marketing department; it’s not a one-and-done deal. Update with new video content every 2-4 weeks as needed.

2. What’s the ideal length for a social media video, and what should it contain (a few ideas of what has worked best for you)?

The ideal length for a social media video again depends on the objective you choose. If you are trying to create some longer-form content like a “meet the team” series or a highlight reel of an event, then those content pieces should be several minutes long, with a maximum length of 10 minutes. These types of content should only be displayed to long-term customers who have already established a relationship with you.

If you’re trying to create just a few quick video ads showcasing your product or service, then under 15 seconds should suffice to introduce potential new buyers to your idea.

For instance, our agency helps certain businesses sell tickets to events; we have several short-form videos of around 10-15 seconds to be used on Facebook advertisements, but we also have one long-form video of around 10 minutes on our landing page for those who have expressed interest in the event and have buying intent. Those who express more and more interest get longer, more intimate content so that they feel more and more involved.

The bottom line is that there is no “magic number” for the perfect video length because each video accomplishes a different marketing task for a different audience. It’s also important to keep in mind that if you are running these videos on your Facebook advertisements, your ads will not run on Instagram if the videos are longer than 1 minute.

As for content, the main thing to focus on is what makes your product or service unique – the main value proposition. A simple way to find your value proposition is to ask yourself the following question: “If we had to sell our product or service using only one sentence, what would that sentence be?”

In our agency, when we’re helping clubs or concert venues sell tickets, our main selling point is the experience of the event. We don’t promote the food or drinks or parking situation because that’s not the central message. We want people to know that if you come to this event with this artist, then you’ll have the best time of your life. Because we know the one value proposition that we want to offer, we are able to effectively create video content around that one idea.

For example, if you were to see one of our advertisements for our nightclub clients, it would be a lot of flashy scenes and party shots, stirring you emotionally and creating a desire to join in on the fun! One simple idea is all it takes.

3. Some tips on video marketing on Facebook

Use captions. Videos on Facebook autoplay, and if viewers cannot immediately tell what’s going on in the video, they will lose interest and keep scrolling. Adding captions helps them decide whether or not the content is something worth watching. Using captions will, on average, double your average viewing time.

Invest in a brand video that explains your brand thoroughly. You can use and reuse this type of video for as long as you’re in business; you can even use it on your website.

Vary the style of content based on your audience.. If your business sells high-ticket items, then you’ll want videos that educate your consumer on the merits of your product. If your business sells services, then you’ll want some video testimonials of past clients to demonstrate the quality of your business.”

David Everette
David Everett
Founder
DES Marketing

Expert tip – If you’re looking to stand out from the crowd here’s a little tip. Do competitor research and make a list of the top 3 or so… Make a spreadsheet with the colors they use, the style they use (modern, traditional, etc.) and other notes.

1. What’s the first thing you should do after you have decided to invest in videos for social media and how?

You need a Social Content Calendar. Creating a calendar helps you organize your content and including key dates (National Holidays, “National Hotdog Day”, etc..) that you can leverage against your brand. If you have Excel or Google Docs (even better for teams) that’s a good start. There are countless calendar templates online that you can download and then tweak to your needs.

TIP: Color code each social media content post (Dark Navy for Facebook, Light blue for Twitter, Yellow for Snapchat…etc.) so that you know which channels are being posted on and how frequently. This is also a great way visually to see how you’re content is rolling out.

2. What’s the ideal length for a social media video, and what should it contain (a few ideas of what has worked best for you)?

This really depends on say, the product or service and the social media platform you’re using really. Generally, short-form video content (>2-4 minutes) perform better than say, longer more detailed videos.

Content is King / Queen here. Your content should be engaging and matter to your audience. I say matter because there is a lot of clutter out there- fluff as it were… Make sure your content stays on brand message and adds value in someway to your audience. Each piece or video should answer two basic questions: (1) What is this for and (2) Who is the audience. These tips should guide your narrative and give a solid direction for your videos.

3. What are your top tips for creating video content?

TIP #1
If you’re looking to stand out from the crowd here’s a little tip. Do competitor research and make a list of the top 3 or so… Make a spreadsheet with the colors they use, the style they use (modern, traditional, etc.) and other notes. This will serve as an aid when crafting your content so that it truly stands out from the competition.

TIP #2
If you’re looking to get a bit more advanced in your social media video efforts, consider A/B testing videos before posting. If you’re a small business or individual, share two options with close friends or partners and get feedback. If you’re a mid-sized or larger business, there are of course countless tools and software to help you achieve this. A/B testing is another tool we use as marketers to achieve our goals and increase overall results for your efforts.”

Amanda
Amanda Speroni
Consultant
Thornley Fallis

Expert tip – In every video it is important to tell a story. Within a story there is always a story line that includes an introduction, your main points and your conclusion. Within this story you’re going to want to include eye catching elements to keep your viewers watching and coming back for more.

1. What is the first thing you should do after you have decided to invest in videos for social media and how?

You’ve decided to invest in videos for social media, now what? The first thing we recommend is to build a content strategy to always have on hand as reference to keep your video content focused and on track. Here are some things you want to include in your strategy:

  • your overall goal
  • the messages you want to tell your audience
  • tactics such as what platforms you will post on, what time of day, and who your target audience is
  • an editorial calendar and upload schedule

2. What is the ideal length for a social media video, and what should it contain? (what worked best for you)

Every platform differs but on average the ideal length for a social media video is under 60-seconds. This allows it to be cross-posted on various platforms such as Instagram, Twitter and Facebook. Content is going to alter depending on your strategy, but in every video it is important to tell a story.

Within a story there is always a storyline that includes an introduction, your main points and your conclusion. Within this story you’re going to want to include eye catching elements to keep your viewers watching and coming back for more. This can include interesting background music, titles and captions and call to actions.

Here is an example of why you should optimize your videos without sound and include titles and captions:

Here is an example of a video under 60-seconds with a call to action:

3. What are your top tips for creating video content?

An additional tip for social media videos is to promote it across all your social platforms and stick to one focused topic.

Gear dads
Slavik Boyechko
Video producer and blogger
Gear Dads

Expert insight – Having produced hundreds of videos for organizations telling their stories online, I think the ideal video length is about 90-120 seconds.. For stories where we’ve wanted to profile multiple individuals or aspects of an organization, producing a series of 90 second videos has proven way smarter and ultimately better for the campaign, than trying to get audiences to sit through one 6-10 minute video.

1. What is the first thing you should do after you have decided to invest in videos for social media and how?

If you’ve decided you want to invest in video on social media, it’s important to go out there and find a couple examples of video campaigns you want to emulate. There are many types of videos out there, and the most difficult part of hiring a video producer is communicating what you want, so they can provide an accurate estimate and complete the job on time and under budget.

2. What is the ideal length for a social media video, and what should it contain? (what worked best for you)

Having produced hundreds of videos for organizations telling their stories online, I think the ideal video length is about 90-120 seconds… For stories where we’ve wanted to profile multiple individuals or aspects of an organization, producing a series of 90 second videos has proven way smarter and ultimately better for the campaign, than trying to get audiences to sit through one 6-10 minute video.

But a lot needs to happen in 90 seconds. In a documentary styled corporate video, for example, there still needs to be multiple sequences, shot in different locations, featuring up to three subjects, and with a music bed or two that will carry the momentum. For viewers who are scrolling through the Facebook timeline on their phones, that 90 seconds needs to be killer for someone to lift their thumb and pay attention.

3. What are your top tips for creating video content?

Captions are a must. And don’t ever start a video with, “My name is ____ and I’m ____.” Literally any other sentence is a more captivating way to capture a viewer’s attention.

Feature image by Jakob Owens on Unsplash

  • http://forgelightcreative.com Tyler Sprunk

    Thanks for including me in this awesome collection of advice!

    • Disha Dinesh

      It’s our pleasure. You’ve given our readers some great tips! Thanks :)

  • Pingback: Google()