Video has a unique ability to connect with viewers, plus we have so many options now for sharing video and measuring results.
More and more social networks have rolled out the ability to host or share video natively. This alone demonstrates its great value.
In order to truly capture the full potential value of social and mobile video, you need to know how to optimize your video content for small screens and for social browsing feeds that give you limited time to reach your audience.
Video performs best on social or mobile when it is optimized these conditions. Here are five ways to do just that:
1. Convey a Message in the First 3 Seconds
You’ve got a narrow opportunity to capture attention or leave a valuable brand impression. On Facebook, people spend about 1.7 seconds on each piece of content in their mobile feed, and it only takes .25 seconds of exposure for people to recall mobile feed content, meaning it has made an impression on them.
The value of your content or ad is established very quickly (within the first 3 seconds) and increases with duration:
- Up to 74% of the value of your post/ad is delivered within the first 10 seconds.
- 65% of people who watch the first three seconds of a Facebook video will watch for at least 10 seconds. 45% will watch for 30 seconds.
This is why its crucial to do one of 3 things within the first 3 seconds of your video:
- Capture attention with your video’s thumbnail images, opening frames or on-screen text titles.
- Convey a specific message with on-screen text, sub-titles or imagery.
- Expose your viewer to visuals or content you want people to notice and remember, adding to overall brand recall.
2. Don’t Rely on Audio (But Don’t Exclude It)
Most social feeds have native video play with the sound off by default, and many people browse on their mobile phones while they are in busy, public places or while they also have televisions on at home. In fact, more than 85% of Facebook videos are watched without sound.
Viewers on social or mobile are likely to watch without sound or may only activate sound after a second or two if they are interested in the video. You must rely on subtitles, the built-in post text, and the opening visuals of your video to capture attention and communicate information.
Captions, logos and video visuals can communicate your message quite effectively. There are also CTA (call-to-action) buttons and other linking opportunities that can help you prompt action and show where viewers can find more information.
This does not mean you should exclude sound altogether…
When a viewer does become interested and activates their audio, discovering that there is none can make them feel like your product is unfinished or details were overlooked. They were interested in furthering their experience and they weren’t able to. This is a hallmark of amateur video, and a professional business should strive to create polished content.
Choose an audio backdrop that reflects your brand in style and tone, and enhances your viewers’ experience.
3. Short vs Long Video – Each Has Its Place
A good rule of thumb if you’re just starting out with social and mobile content is to keep it short. In general you can expect exposure time to fall below 3 seconds, and full-length should be no more than 15 seconds.
Depending on the content, the viewer and the place of exposure, however, longer videos can also be highly successful on mobile. A good strategy employs varying lengths of content across different platforms:
- Micro-content (up to 15 seconds) used as teasers, previews, in social feeds or as social or mobile ads.
- Full-length videos (up to 2 minutes) used on a website home page or landing page, or YouTube.
- Longer than 2 minutes for content of proven interest, like mini-documentaries, interviews, presentations for a targeted or established audience.
An efficient video marketing strategy can utilize footage to its greatest potential by editing it in different ways to create different pieces of content. Videos of varying lengths, of various styles, can be created for sharing on each different platform.
4. Target Your Millennial Customer
The valuable demographic of 18 to 33 year old millennials spend most of their time viewing and browsing on mobile devices as compared to desktop devices or broadcast. If this is a large part of your target audience, be sure to craft content that appeals specifically to them and their needs.
For example, if you’re a financial services company you may wish to focus on products used by millennials, such as mobile banking or first-time home buyer products, with content optimized and shared on mobile.
5. Create ongoing content
Viewers use their mobile devices and social feeds every day, and seeing the same content repeatedly can start to have a negative effect on the brand it represents. People browse social feeds and mobile apps for something new each day, so it’s a great way to show that your company is active and fresh. The best way to do this is by producing ongoing content.
Release new content, or update the creative of your ads as frequently as possible. You can do this by producing multiple versions of micro-video content at one time and releasing them slowly according to a schedule. This will enhance your brand image by showing new visuals and new communications on a regular basis.
As more tools and resources emerge in the world of social and mobile, you can be sure that video will continue to be a crucial part of them. Video has always been more effective than text, and digital interactions with other people, businesses and brands will continue to use video to provide motivation, inspiration and information to their customers. The best way to stay on top of this rapid growth in technology is to start with the essentials and work up from there, according to the strategy that works for your brand.