SFBJ | Social | Video

Unlock social media power with 6-second videos

Reprinted from South Florida Business Journal.

Whether it’s sports, fast cars, rockets into space or puppies playing fetch, movement is what excites the human spirit and inspires interest. Our response to motion is what kept our ancestors safe from predators, and it’s that same biological predisposition that determines what we respond to on social media today. It’s no surprise, then, that video accounts for a majority of social posts these days. Videos are 70% more likely to be viewed by the 18-49 age group. Video marketing is no longer just about millennials.

Companies are investing significant time and budgets on their social presences. To accelerate results, it’s important to create more content that will move us, the viewer. With the ability to use auto-fill lead capture within your ads on Facebook, LinkedIn and Instagram, you can literally move prospects through the sales funnel faster.

The most affordable

Busy customers prefer videos that deliver the message at lightning speed. In fact, the decision to watch or to click away takes place in the first 3 seconds. According to research, mobile users will click away in a mere half-second if they don’t know or like the brand.

The 6-second format not only fills the customer need for speed, but is more affordable to produce—and more affordable to place in social media and other channels.

You can say a lot in 6 seconds

Make sure your social messaging supports your overall media messaging strategy, but with a more personal touch. Showing a person within the first 3 seconds increases your opportunity to capture the viewer’s attention and create an emotional response.

Consider short customer comments that show how you addressed a need quickly or introduced a solution they had not thought of. Show your thought leadership by having a staff member give a product or service update. Introduce a new employee or announce an award for the company’s work.

A company outing—an employee recognition luncheon or charity event—can provide content for a series of 6-second videos that illustrate company culture.

Your call to action will lead the viewer to more information, so don’t think about the video as the whole conversation; It’s just the opening line.

Tips and stats that impact video

A large percentage of video ads are viewed without sound, so words on the screen fulfill an important role in communicating the message, especially the call to action.

When creating longer videos, it may be a good idea to plan for the ability to edit out smaller 6-second clips that can be used, as well. Preplanning for these uses makes separate productions unnecessary and provides continuity in your final product. This approach is less expensive and more effective.

It is also important to consider producing square (1:1 aspect ratio) video formats. Square videos perform 60% better than horizontal videos, fit mobile screens better and stay on screens longer. Make sure you have a hashtag to get 10% additional engagement.

And while we have spoken mostly about Facebook, LinkedIn and Instagram, there are 1.2 billion video views a year on Twitter. The platform claims that tweets containing video receive 10 times more engagement than those without. And, of course, YouTube, which helps populate all the others, offers tons of targeted advertising options that specifically require 6-second videos.

Platforms provide helpful tools

Every platform has a vested interest in helping you make video ads successful. That’s why they provide free how-tos, training, format templates, testing tools and analytics to advertisers. All the platforms are working hard to help increase the power of video for companies by setting you up for success with viewers.

Now is the time to take advantage of the affordability and excitement of 6-second videos. Doing it right can definitely be a competitive advantage.