Video is becoming more important on social media. As the global battle for attention heats up, companies can capture viewers and drive engagement with Facebook videos.

Here are our top tips for shooting and posting Facebook videos.

Use subtitles

Around 85% of Facebook videos are watched without sound.

Many users will scroll through their newsfeed when they’re on a bus or taking a break at work, so they won’t be able to listen to your video.

If your viewer doesn’t know what’s going on without sound then they are unlikely to stick around very long. Adding captions can be time-consuming, but it is relatively straightforward.

Shoot square videos

Buffer says that square videos are more popular on Facebook. Particularly on mobile where more videos are watched.

Widescreen videos take up 78% more screen real estate in the Facebook news feed on mobile than on desktop.

And with mobile browsing only going up, it is well worth experimenting with square videos to see if they boost your video engagement rate.

Grab people’s attention

The Facebook news feed is essentially one big competition for the scroller’s attention. And with so much great content on the platform these days, you need to stand out.

Make sure there’s something to hook your viewer in the first three seconds of your video.

You can do this with a tantalising custom thumbnail or a short action clip at the start of your video that whets the viewer’s appetite.

Simple videos

Grab and keep your audience’s attention with a simple and easy to understand message.

If you can’t sum up what your video is about in one sentence, then your point probably isn’t going to hit home with Facebook viewers.

Simple videos are also easier to share, which is very important when it comes to ‘going viral’ with Facebook content.


Facebook’s algorithm is all about sharing. The most shared videos usually appear ahead of other videos in people’s news feeds.

There is no set formula to win shares on your video. You can ask your followers to share but this will only get you so far.

The best way to go viral is to think about why people might share your video and create your video with this goal in mind.

Your video could make someone’s friends laugh. It could help them show off or it could express how they feel about a certain topic. These are all reasons why someone might share your video.

Compelling copy

The little piece of copy that accompanies your video is another opportunity for you to entice viewers in and generate engagement.

Facebook will truncate your copy with a ‘read more’ tag after about 400 characters, so you want to keep your description relatively short.

But make sure it is long enough to tell the viewer what they are about to watch and include a call to action if you can.

Live video

Facebook recently tweaked their algorithm, giving more weight to live videos. This is because people watch live videos for about three times longer than regular videos.

Live broadcasting isn’t suitable for all videos. Clearly, if you want to take multiple cuts or edit your video, you’ll struggle with the live format.

But some videos work really well. Try live streaming a special event, a tutorial or another interesting scene that you can shoot on the fly.

Do you want to bring Facebook and Instagram video to your company’s marketing?

Speak to a member of the team today.

Call: 090-9273-4319

As of 2018, there are now over 25 million business profiles on Instagram, all competing for the attention of over 80 million personal users. As Facebook faces privacy concerns and Twitter becomes more polarized, Instagram has become one of the most powerful social media platforms for people and brands alike to share meaningful content.

For brand content creators, video professionals, and those just looking to share awesome personal Instagram video content, we offer these seven rules to create sleek, likable videos on Instagram.

The 7 Rules for Creating Instagram-Ready Video Content.

1. Newsfeed vs. Stories

First off, in the post-Snapchat era, there are now two types of content on Instagram. The first is the newsfeed, which is the traditional algorithm-based up-and-down scroll similar to other newsfeeds like Facebook and Twitter. The other is “stories,” the new click-through-style that presents friends’ stories in up to 15-second bursts that last for 24 hours.

If you aren’t familiar with the latter, take some time to get acquainted, as the two are vastly different types of content, each with its own rules and styles.

2. The Instagram Box

When working with video in the newsfeed mode, you’ll notice the famous Instagram box. While Instagram is no longer strict about it, the app still favors its iconic 1×1 ratio layout and encourages its users and brands to at least be aware of its roots.

When creating newsfeed video, you certainly don’t have to stick to 1×1 when shooting, editing, and uploading. You can shoot landscape or vertical, depending on your output. Here are the stats for maximum and minimum ratios and resolutions:

  • Maximum aspect ratio: landscape (1.91:1), square (1:1), vertical (4:5).
  • Minimum resolution: 600 x 315 pixels (1.91:1 landscape) / 600 x 600 pixels (1:1 square) / 600 x 750 pixels (4:5 vertical).

3. 60-Second Max

According to The Verge, Instagram is considering adding long-form video options to its app, but until then, they’ve been gracious enough to expand their newsfeed videos up to 60-seconds. While this may seem frustrating, it does keep the content short, sharp, and fresh. So, create content that excites from the get-go and doesn’t bottom out.

4. Thumbnails

Perhaps the most important element of any good Instagram video is a good thumbnail. Videos will live on on your Instagram page in the same boxes as photos, so your video thumbnail will be all that users see (at first) from then on. Even when scrolling, the thumbnail gives your viewer a first taste of the content. When uploading, Instagram allows you to scrub through and choose your thumbnail, so put your video in its best light!

5. Auto-Play Ready

Also of note, Instagram, like Facebook, plays videos automatically when users scroll across them. However, they all automatically play on mute. This means a couple of things for creators and producers: one, you have to have strong visual information at the very beginning (so no long fade-ins); and two, text becomes your friend for things like exposition or subtitles.

6. Mind the Loop

One cool thing about Instagram that other social media platforms have yet to adopt is the Instagram-loop. At the end of your content, Instagram doesn’t close your video, it just starts it over — similar to the now-defunct Vine app. This becomes especially fun when you have very short, bite-sized content, where you can play off the short motion. It also means you need to be mindful of your beginning and ending sequences so that they don’t transition awkwardly.

7. Exporting from Premiere Pro

Exporting edited footage into Instagram used to be a chore, but as the app has embraced video and brand content, the process has become easier. Here are the latest specs to keep in mind when working on your edit:

  • Supported video codecs: H.264 and VP8.
  • Supported audio codecs: AAC, Vorbis.
  • Maximum file size: 4GB.
  • Maximum frame rate: 30fps.
  • Bitrate: no limit when using two pass encoding with files under 1GB. 8 megabits per second for 1080p, 4 megabits per second for 720p.

How to Shoot Professional Instagram Stories for Your Business

Are you making Instagram stories using only the Instagram app? If so, a magical world of production potential awaits you! By leveling up your stories with these fresh tips for shooting and editing, you’ll stand out from the rest of the feed and give your followers something to talk about.

Vertical video

First and foremost, Instagram stories are consumed vertically. The aspect ratio in the app is 9×16 — a perfect 90-degree flip of normal widescreen video. So wherever your mind takes you during brainstorming, consider this simple constraint, and turn that camera.

Flip! (pause) That! (pause) Camera! (pause)

15-second vs. long-form

When you start thinking about crafting an Instagram story, there are a few different directions to consider.

You could think of it like a Vine (RIP Vine) and create interesting 15-second edits, you could think of it like a 15-second teaser or preview for something you’re releasing, or you could make a series of 15-second video chunks and tell more of a long-form story.

This last option is especially great for step-by-step processes, where the content can be chopped up into 15-second videos and intercut with title slides.

Shooting with your phone’s native camera

If you’re searching for an easy way to make your Instagram stories look more professional, start shooting your video outside of the Instagram app. Using your native camera app, you can better control exposure and focus to really dial in your shots.

Plus, having the ability to trim your clips to fit the 15-second window before uploading to Instagram allows you to do multiple takes without worrying about getting it right the first time. Phew!

With better slow motion and timelapse features in your native camera, you can create some slick shots that you wouldn’t be able to get by shooting within the Instagram app. Who doesn’t want to look slick?

Shooting with your phone and some gear

Taking it one step further, you can use your phone in addition to some gear. Have a tripod, lights, or audio equipment? Use ’em! Put your phone on a tripod, turn on some lights, and hook up an external microphone to really improve the quality of the video! From there, it’s just as easy to trim and upload your video to Instagram.

Shooting with a DSLR

If you’re really looking to level up your Instagram story game, consider using the DSLR you already have. It may seem ridiculous to shoot an Instagram story with your DSLR, knowing that it’ll disappear in 24 hours, but the workflow can actually be quick and easy.

Think about it this way: You post videos to social media that you’ve shot with a DSLR …  so why not take the time to apply that polish to your stories? Your followers will notice, and they might just tell their friends.

Also, now that you can pin your favorite stories to your profile, there’s even more reason to shoot something that stands out. It’s an opportunity to highlight anything you want in a creative, digestible way.

As I mentioned earlier, when you’re going about shooting and editing, you need to remember to shoot for the vertical format. Flip that camera, and flip that image in post!

Wondering how to easily shoot vertical video with a DSLR? Say hello to our little friend: the ball tripod head. If you have a ball head laying around, mount it to a tripod plate, clip the tripod plate into your tripod, and then mount your DSLR to the ball head. This way, you’ll still have the ability to pan and tilt the way you would regularly, but everything will be shot at 9:16.

Editing for Instagram stories

Your editing workflow is going to be the same. You’ll bring your footage in and edit just like you would with any other video… except this time you’ll be editing vertical footage.

In order to create a 9:16 sequence in Adobe Premiere, you’ll head over to the Settings tab. From there, choose Custom, then set your dimensions to 1080×1920.

Next, drag your footage over to the timeline. Premiere will ask if you want to change or keep your sequence settings. This is because your original footage is still 1920×1080, even though you shot it vertically. Unfortunately, there is no camera setting to shoot vertical video on a DSLR… yet!

So what you’ll want to do is keep the sequence settings, and then bring your footage into the timeline. From here, you’ll have to rotate each clip to be oriented properly. Head to the clip’s rotation settings, and set it to either +90 or -90, depending on how you shot it.

Edit your video how you like, whether you’re doing a 15-second edit, or a longer-form multiple video story. Just remember: The limit is 15 seconds per video!

Exporting for Instagram

Once you’ve got a video or multiple videos that are ready to export, double-check that each video is under 15 seconds. Then export the way you normally would with any video in Premiere or media encoder, but using the 9:16 settings.

From here, if you’re on an iPhone, you can AirDrop your videos to your phone, and start uploading them to your Instagram story!

The main takeaway here is to be more purposeful with shooting for Instagram stories. You could just shoot in the app and make it more of a casual, “slice of life” at your company, but you’re a video marketer! This is a great opportunity to stand out from the crowd and experiment with a different video format. So have fun! And share your stories with us. We’d love to see them!

Do you want to bring Facebook and Instagram video to your company’s marketing?

Speak to a member of the team today.

Call: 090-9273-4319

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