Social networks are an integral part of most people’s daily lives; a Pew Research Center study in 2015 found that 65% of all American adults use social networking sites. Nearly 30% of a person’s online time today is spent on social media: that’s about two hours each and every day.
Using your app’s demo video (or a shortened ad-specific version of it) on social networks is a no-brainer, and is a great way to market your app and increase its visibility; 50% of app consumers stated that they look at ads when searching for apps and that ads are particularly effective in encouraging potential customers to download apps. 49% said they searched social ads and 43% said they viewed video ads.
Every social network is unique, so if you have the budget, designing multiple videos that are tailor-made for each of the social networks your company has a presence on is a good idea. Let’s take a look at some of the special considerations that need to be taken into account when creating videos for the three most-popular social networks.
There’s a lot of competition for customer eyes on Facebook and video is everywhere you look, so it’s vital that you catch the Facebook user’s eyes and attention quickly. Many users have auto-play disabled, so you want a thumbnail image that makes them curious and entices them to click play.
The first 2-3 seconds is critical—that’s the amount of time you have to grab the viewer’s attention and make them want to watch the entire video. And while it’s fine to post a full-length demo video and tutorials on your company Facebook page, if you’re going to run a Facebook ad, the video needs to be short: no more than 30 seconds, tops.
Another thing you want for your Facebook video is captions. Many people on their phones watch videos with the sound off, so having captions ensures the most important information is still conveyed to the viewer who can’t hear your audio.
Instagram is a network going through incredible growth, especially with the 18-29 demographic. The network also appeals to the under 18 crowd; if your app is intended for a younger audience, you definitely want to consider a video optimized for Instagram.
Instagram is unique in that it doesn’t use the horizontal rectangle you see everywhere else. A rectangular video can work, but it will appear much smaller and won’t be as visually appealing as a video designed to fit Instagram’s square space.
Use the full 60 seconds the platform allows, and for the same reasons listed above for Facebook videos, captions are good to have in Instagram videos.
Another way Instagram is unique is that the best videos aren’t a typical advertisement. Instead, Instagram is more about engaging with your audience; promotional tie-ins or very quick demos and tutorials work best. Instagram is also where you’ll often find videos that demonstrate a company’s corporate culture or share a social message, like this video from AirBnB.
Fun and quirky is also key. Tasty is an excellent example of Instagram videos done right, and they have translated extremely well over to Facebook and YouTube (where you sometimes find they’ve added captions and even extended the length—notice in this video the square layout and the empty white space designed to make the rest of YouTube’s rectangular viewing space disappear into the background).
Last, audio is a big consideration; Instagram videos are set to auto-loop, which means you want to make sure your audio doesn’t end in a way that makes it jarring or disharmonious when it loops back to the beginning.
Long videos and full-length ads are generally a no-no on Twitter. Attention spans are shorter on Twitter, so like Facebook, you need to grab attention quickly and keep your video short. Our recommendation for a good length is 15 seconds. A Twitter video isn’t meant to be an advertisement so much as it’s meant to capture a moment and make the viewer want to learn more.
Twitter is fast-moving, so if you aren’t paying for a promo ad (which will ensure your Tweet shows up at the top of feeds), don’t be afraid to Tweet your video several times a day. Just tweak the language slightly for each Tweet (don’t forget to include relevant hashtags) and you’re good to go!
Your budget may mean you need to focus on a single video. If that’s the case, focus on a video optimized for Facebook. Facebook remains the most popular social network; of the American adults who are online, 79% of them use Facebook. Neither Instagram nor Twitter are anywhere near as popular; even combined, they can’t match Facebook’s popularity.
In any case, no matter which social network you choose to have a presence on or whether you have a single strong video, or several videos created specifically for each social network, your videos must be mobile-friendly. 65% of Facebook and 47% of Instagram video views are via mobile or tablet.
If you’re ready to branch out into specialized videos to maximize your visibility and ROI on different social media platforms, we want to work with you. We can help design one video, or several that are perfect for whichever social media platforms your company uses.