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The Future of Video is Short

Charles Rohrer Sep 08 2022 1 AM | 4 min read

A Quick Introduction to Short-form Video

HubSpot Video

As video continues to grow into the leading format on social media, it’s increasingly important for advertisers to lean into snackable content that’s authentic and feels less branded than standard advertising to stay relevant. 92% of consumers trust organic, user-generated content (UGC) more than they trust advertising, so creating video advertising  that feels as natural as organic content is key.

Short-form Videos—available on Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat, YouTube, and TikTok—solves for this by delivering short, entertaining videos that are easily discoverable by users. Because they show up in easily scannable feeds, your customers won’t need to follow your brand  to quickly engage with your content. Which makes Short-format videos one of the best ways to reach people who aren’t yet aware of your brand guiding them through the customer journey from start to finish. 

How Do Short-form Videos Work?

Short-form Videos are typically less than a minute long, filmed vertically in 9x16 format, and meant to quickly convey a message or tell stories in entertaining ways. Feed Structures like Reels and TikTok’s home screen use algorithms to quickly curate the content users want to see—so brevity, authenticity, and enjoyability are the best ways to win.

Short-form video creators are social media power users and innovators—they take advantage of the latest trends in mobile video to tell their stories with the latest tools: sound is a must, AI voice-overs are in, and punchy cuts set to music are nearly everywhere. Short-form Videos are typically shot in natural environments with natural lighting—you’ll want to balance the professionalism of your brand guidelines with the platform’s natural feel so the ad doesn’t feel too separated from the content users see while scanning through their feeds. Finally, Short-form Videos are typically more conversational and less scripted—you’ll want to avoid standard brand messaging and instead lean into dialogue, voice-over, and text captions that feels more straightforward, educational, and organic.

Here’s how to get the most out of Short-form Videos

Keep It Short

Users spend an average of 1.7 seconds watching Short-form videos, so get to your core message and central idea as quickly as you can. Short-form Videos succeed in their most snackable forms - bite-sized and bingeable in the context of a users’ feed.

Be Authentic And Original

People are spending more time on Social Media than any other form of digital entertainment —Gen Z prefers TikTok to TV, while everyone else casually catches up on their Reels while their favorite show streams in the background. Marketing content should feel just as entertaining, relevant, and native as the organic content they’re consuming during their precious social media time. You’ll also want to lean into what we know about the algorithm to succeed—Short-form Videos tend to work when original content is shared, so creativity is key. Work with multiple creators on content that really exemplifies what works about your brand to grow your reach and fight ad fatigue with content that sells.

Work With The Algorithm Boost Your Signal

Speaking of the algorithm, you’ll want to make sure you take into account other considerations such as when to release and the amount of content you produce. TikTok and Instagram Reels favor more videos posted more often—oftentimes during the late afternoon on weekdays so you can catch your audiences during their Short-form Video watching time in the evenings. And remember that basic engagement is most crucial—you’re no longer aiming for likes, but instead relying on the algorithm to boost your signal with total time watched and comments made on your video content. So think about ways to get your audiences watching your videos to the end and engage with your content while you make your videos. 

Tracking Success With Short-form Video

One of the best things about Short-form Video formats versus other formats is that— due to their freshness and popularity—they can be easily applied to every stage of your customer journey. They’re effective at driving brand awareness with fun, trendy brand campaigns, but also effective at converting your customers via unboxing videos, tutorials, and other topical content. The main thing that matters is that you keep it relevant and fit the feed structure and style of your users. Here are the metrics you can track on the back-end of Short-form Videos:

  • Brand awareness and Reach
  • Traffic and Views
  • App Installs and Conversions

Learn More with Smartly.io

You can now easily generate Short-form videos within our creative templates and adhere to each platforms’ best practices within one view, producing all your Short-form templates with minimal effort and maximum brand consistency. Get in touch with us to learn more!

HubSpot Video
Author
Charles Rohrer
Charles is a Product Marketing Manager working on Smartly’s Creative Tools, developing products and strategies that help creative marketers drive success at a global scale.

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