A complete guide to social media videos

On social networks, the highest performing content is undoubtedly video. Let’s see why in this blogpost!

Marketing Team
Video Marketing A complete guide to social media videos

Table of Contents

Social media has forever revolutionized the face of the internet and not only that: it has also changed the very way we look at the world, how we socialize, how we look for information, how we look for jobs, and much more.

It’s understandable, then, why social media has also become one of the most important playgrounds for marketers, in any industry, for any kind of company, and for the most diverse objectives.

Social media is where individuals and brands continuously post a huge amount of content, content that is very different.

However, there is one type of content that has proven to have the best performance in terms of communication effectiveness, organic coverage, and engagement: we’re talking about video. This isn’t just our opinion.  In fact, there is data to back it up, numbers that are very clear. We’ll take a look at them in this post.

In any case, it’s useful to report some more general and interrelated statistics right away:

  • When viewing a video, the average user retains 95% of the message it contains; this drops to 10% if we’re talking about text.
  • 94% of marketers say that videos have consistently helped customers understand their products or services.
  • Videos on social media receive 48% more views than all other types of content.
  • 93% of brands say they have acquired new customers through a video on social media.
  • 87% of video marketers say they are satisfied with the ROI of their social media video campaigns.

It’s clear that the secret to the success of social media videos is rooted here. But we want to go even deeper and more specific. That’s because today, social media can mean so many things.  

This is why we decided to divide this little guide for social media videos into sections that each focus on a single social network. We will start with Facebook, continue with Instagram, then Twitter, TikTok, and finally, LinkedIn. At the end, we will focus on the topic of data-driven, which is the real turning point for everything related to social media videos, on any platform.

The “old” Facebook still works very well

Facebook can be considered the ancestor of all social networks, with its birth in the now “very distant” 2004. Today, Facebook has more than 2.9 billion monthly active users, worldwide; specifically, 1.62 billion people use this social network every day. And what is the role of video on Facebook?

Let’s look at it with a couple of statistics:

  • More than 4 billion videos are viewed on Facebook every day.
  • 84% of video marketers use Facebook as a major marketing channel.

Here are two practical tips:

The first is to focus primarily on optimizing for mobile.

  • In fact, 94% of Facebook ad revenue comes from mobile devices. And half of that amount, in particular, is a direct result of social media videos built from a mobile-first perspective.

The second suggestion is to create videos that are understandable even without audio (thus, with the aid of subtitles, for example):

  • 85% of all videos on Facebook are viewed in silent mode.

These are two suggestions, the latter of which also applies to Instagram. We’ll focus on this social media in the next section.

Instagram: the social favorite of millennials

Instagram, which was born in 2010, recently passed the mark of 2 billion monthly active users; the average user spends as much as 53 minutes a day on it. 500 million people use Instagram Stories every day.

Now, here are specific statistics related to videos on Instagram:

  • From 2013 to today, videos on Instagram have increased by 80% each year;
  • Also on Instagram, video content has an engagement rate that is, on average, double that of all other social networks;
  • Videos are also the type of content that generates, on average, the most comments;

Marketers will want to pay special attention to this decisive statistic: 83% of Instagram users discover new products and services on the platform. Let’s look at the target audience.

According to the most recent research, the largest demographic group among Instagram users is 25 to 34 years old. In fact, this group makes up 48.63% of the total audience. This is the target audience of millennials, perhaps the most interesting for most brands.

Finally, you’ll also want to pay attention to the formats! Video for posting in the feed, video for reels, video for stories: each format has its own technical rules, stylistic features, and best practices.

Videos are also important on Twitter

Today, Twitter has about 211 million active users. In some ways, this social media channel is also the most “institutional” and “journalistic” social media. And it’s one that originally, relied most on the textual aspect.

But things are changing—or, rather, they have already changed. And Twitter has also become a very interesting arena for social media videos. Again, let’s see it through some data, provided by the platform itself.

This is the data we will dig into below:

  • More than 2 million videos are viewed on Twitter every day, with year-on-year growth of 67%;
  • Video is also the type of advertising content with the strongest growth;
  • Tweets containing videos trigger an average of 10 times more engagement than tweets without videos

Even on Twitter, of course, the focus must be primarily on mobile:

  • 93% of video views on Twitter occur via smartphones.

And let’s close with a little tip: when publishing a post containing a video, it’s a good idea to keep text copy as concise as possible. In fact, videos associated with minimal copy prove to have a 13% higher total viewing time than videos associated with long copy.

TikTok: the fastest-growing social network that Gen Z likes

TikTok is a social network born in China in 2016, all based on videos, and which has achieved huge success, especially among younger people, within a very short period of time. 

According to the most recent and accredited data, the platform has already reached one billion monthly active users. In 2021, TikTok was the most downloaded app worldwide. Each user, on average, opens TikTok 19 times a day. And watch out for the demographical aspects!

If we stay with the data available for the American public, we see that 25% of users are between 10 and 19 years old. And 22.4% are between 20 and 29 years old. In short: the young and the very young. And this can only influence the type of content a brand can distribute on this platform, the potential of which remains largely unexplored.

LinkedIn – videos and professional contacts

Now, we’ll move to a very different front from TikTok. LinkedIn is a social network that is used primarily for business and professional contacts, both by companies and individuals.

Again, let’s start with some numbers that offer a good snapshot of the size and characteristics of this ecosystem:

  • LinkedIn now registers more than 810 million users spread across 200 countries worldwide: there were “only” 30 million in 2009, 100 million in 2011, and 630 million in 2019. 
  • 49 million people use LinkedIn to search for jobs every week.
  • Every minute, an average of six people are hired through LinkedIn.
  • Every second, 77 applications are sent for a wide variety of roles and professions.
  • 40% of B2B marketers cited LinkedIn as the most effective channel for generating high-quality leads.

Video is also the most effective media on LinkedIn.

Specifically, videos show an average engagement rate that is three times higher than text-only content.

One suggestion? Harness the potential of streaming videos, which generate, on average, 7 times as many reactions as classic videos and as many as 24 times as many comments

The data-driven turn for social media videos

So far we have given you as complete (but certainly not exhaustive) a picture as possible regarding social media videos and different platforms. It is, as we have seen, a really broad ecosystem and, above all, one that is constantly changing.

Hence, there is a need to find some fundamental pillars, some constant elements in the midst of all the variables. And when it comes to video marketing for social, today, one very solid pillar is there: it’s called data analytics. And this is the real breakthrough in digital marketing.

In concrete terms: it’s about learning how to collect, organize, and interpret the widest and deepest amount of information about your actual and potential target audience. Knowing your audience, in short. And from this knowledge, you can package an increasingly tailored and personalized type of video communication therefore increasingly effective, for any platform.

It is the turning point of data-driven video marketing, a turn that can be embraced by turning to specialized video automation platforms such as Babelee.

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