How to Create Successful Video For Social Media

Updated: August 26, 2021

Video content is a key driver of traffic across social media. According to Hootsuite, “the number of daily videos produced on Instagram has quadrupled in the last five years, and YouTube users watch more than a billion hours of content every day.” Additionally, a Tweet with a video is 6x more likely to be retweeted than one with an image. So how exactly do you adapt social video into your weekly and monthly content calendar? Check out these key components of how to make successful videos on social media to help in your planning.

Aspect Ratio

First, it’s important to mention that the ideal “aspect ratio” or “size” of your video is dependent on which platform you are posting on. Typically, the 1:1 ratio will work if you don’t have the ability to change it across multiple platforms. However, if you’re looking for the exact sizes that work for different platforms, follow these guidelines:

Facebook

  • Landscape aspect ratio: 16:9
  • Portrait aspect ratio: 9:16 (if the video includes a link – the aspect ratio is: 16:()
  • Mobile renders both video types to an aspect ratio of 2:3
  • Recommended video dimensions: 1280 X 720 for both Landscape and Portrait

Instagram

  • Landscape aspect ratio: 16:9, minimum dimension 600 x 315
  • Square aspect ratio: 1:1, minimum dimension 600 x 600
  • Vertical aspect ratio: 4:5, minimum dimension 600 x 750
  • Recommended: 864 x 1080

TikTok
  • Aspect ratio: 9:16 to fill the standard mobile screen
  • Recommended resolution: 1080 x 1920
Twitter

  • Recommended aspect ratio: 16:9 or 1:1 (1:1 is recommended for rending across devices)
  • Max video length is 140 seconds

YouTube

  • Recommended aspect ratio is 16:9
  • Non-skippable video max length is 15 or 20 seconds
  • Maximum dimension: 3840 X 2160
  • Max file size is 128GB or 12 hours

Hello

As a best practice, we highly recommend keeping your videos short and sweet. The average person only has a 2-second attention span on Facebook, and this is demonstrative of social media across the board. Make sure your video engages the user within the first 3 seconds, and keep your organic video posts to around 30, impactful seconds. Save long-form content (anything longer than 60 seconds) for IGTV, Facebook Watch, and YouTube!

Optimized for Mobile – Captions

Make your videos simple enough so that they can be easily understood and digested on a mobile device! Since over half of social videos are streamed on mobile, it’s a key component of creating your video content.

This means that you need to simplify the video by adding captions or graphics so that your message isn’t lost if someone watches it without sound on. Test it out – try watching your content without sound to see if it still gets the message across! Here’s a great example:

Quality Content

Not only does the size, mobility, and length of your videos matter, the actual quality of the content does as well! Ensure that your video content is high-resolution and that it provides value to your audience. First off, high-resolution videos have the ability to catch more attention than low-resolution videos do in a user’s feed. Second, think about this before you post your video: “how will my audience benefit from this?”


Video content is already one of the best ways to catch users’ attention, and its share of our collective social media consumption is only growing. By ensuring your video is high-quality, optimized for mobile, has an aspect ratio that is well-suited to the platform, and is short and impactful, you’ll be able to rest easy knowing that you’re set up for success.

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