The Best Ways to Video in Social Media

Video is here to stay, no doubt about it. The number of hours people spend watching videos on YouTube is up by 60 percent, year over year, over the past two years, according to YouTube and according to this article in The Guardian, video will drive 69 percent of internet consumer traffic by 2017.

But how can we use it well within our current social media channels? Here are some thoughts:

Think about audience: Is video relevant to them? How do you know? If you don’t have access to research on your target audience, test it out. Post a few videos, ensuring that the content is relevant, and monitor your stats. See what happens. If there’s engagement from your audience, they’re a good crowd for video.

Formats, quality, etc. It’s hard to know exactly what kind of video will work well. Ultimately, it has to relate to what you do as an organization. Virgin America won “The Best Use of Video in a Social Media Campaign” Shorty Award for its innovative safety video. It’s fun and it gets the point across.

It all depends on what you’re trying to communicate. If you can capture a video that gets your point across in six seconds of a looping video, Vine might be a good way to go. If you’re trying to live stream an event, a community meeting, or a protest, you can try Periscope.

If you have the bandwidth to come up with a concept, shoot and edit a video, go for it! Upload to YouTube or Vimeo and if you keep at it, you’ll have an active channel with multiple video options.

Be sure to remember: video quality is important. You want your audience to be able to see what you’re showing them, so a stable camera and good lighting can really come in handy. Luckily, these days, even phone cameras are advanced enough to capture some amazing video.

Another aspect to keep in mind is audio quality—if you’re taking a video outside, keep in mind ambient sound such as traffic and wind. This is especially important if you’re filming an interview.

Don’t forget to share! Use your current social media presence to disseminate your videos—link them on Twitter, post to Facebook, share via LinkedIn, and embed on your website. Reach your networks like you would normally except for this time, instead of a text or image, you’re sharing a video.

Additional resources on using video:

Code of Best Practices in Fair Use for Online Video

4 Best Practices for Creating Instagram Videos

Marketing with Video in Social Media: A Checklist for Best Practices and Optimization

Mehroz Baig is part of the GovLoop Featured Blogger program, where we feature blog posts by government voices from all across the country (and world!). To see more Featured Blogger posts, click here.

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Katarina Hong

Social media keeps growing and growing. It is such a vital part of how we communicate and share information now! I think it’s so interesting that videos will drive 69 percent of internet consumers by 2017. I agree to successfully use video on social media the steps you have laid are good ones to follow, especially sharing. I know I forget the power of sharing and how much reach it has.