3 Best Practices To Make Your Social Media Videos Effective

Hand holding a smart phone. Text that says: Social Video Marketing Success Practices

Want some winning success practices for social video marketing?

The most important thing you need to know is this…

You need to be discerning about what kinds of videos go on each social media platform.

Each social platform has its own brand and style of content, and each requires different video lengths and styles of content.

Get it wrong, and you’ll get penalized in the form of less exposure, and lost ROI. Ouch!

Get it right, and you get rewarded with new eyeballs, more attention, and more sales in the long term. Better!

So this begs the question, what types of video should you be posting on which social media for best results?

Are there techniques that work on all platforms?

Let’s start with some social video marketing tips that work across all platforms, and then we’ll get more specific.

Native Video

Make sure your videos are native. What does that mean?

Native video is when you upload the video file directly to the platform, instead of sharing it from one social media site to another.

An example of this would be uploading a raw video file to Linkedin.

Alternatively, uploading it to Youtube, and then posting the Youtube link on Linkedin – is NOT native to Linkedin. 

So why does this matter? Because each of the different social media platforms are competitive, they will give more exposure to videos that are native.

The best and coolest benefit you get from native posting is autoplay.

When your videos are native, they will start playing automatically in your feed.

This will also massively improve your chances of your video getting watched!

Closed Caption

Having your social video marketing use closed captions is another great strategy that works across all platforms.

A video with closed captions engages far more on social media, and they rank better because they cater to the hearing impaired.

You’re safe and in good standing using CC on any platform.

Video Descriptions & Hashtags

Make sure that your videos are posted with good quality description of what it’s about. This is very important.

If you post a video without a description, it’s not operating at full potential, and can potentially come off spammy.

People often read the description of the video before they’re willing to watch the whole thing, so make sure your description is enticing and simple.

Also, use hashtags. 2 or 3 per video is great. This helps your videos get found when people are scrolling through hashtags they are interested in learning more about.

One thing I like to do is Google “best hashtags for (your industry here)”.

This often gives a comprehensive list of hashtags I can use to find a new audience that would be interested in my videos.

Now, let’s give you some tips that are specific to the major social media platforms so that you can have more success in each area.


The key factor to consider with social video marketing on Instagram is that you’re dealing with very short attention spans. Probably the shortest of all social platforms.

Therefore, your videos need to be short.

Instagram already has a maximum of 60 seconds before it sends you over to IGTV, but my suggestion is to come in well under the limit.

10 – 30 seconds is an ideal length for your videos.

This keeps your content short and punchy, and your audience will want more.

You never want to have your audience getting bored of your videos, so don’t give them the chance!

Walk away before they do 😉


Instagram is also about Influencers, so partnering with an influencer is going to drive huge exposure to your social video marketing.

In the spirit of Influencer-ship, you can also work toward becoming your own influencer or thought leader. This involves putting yourself out there on video quite a lot.


The key to this platform is to grab attention and entice your audience to learn more.

Flashy shots and high-quality cinematography will perform well.

Be cautious of educational content. People don’t use Instagram to learn things.

However, if educational videos are a big focus in your video repertoire, then post super-short clips teaching only one, simple tip.

Finally, because we want videos to be short, snippets of longer videos, or trailers for your product/service are great for Instagram.

Consider it like this. If your social video marketing is a 3-course meal, Instagram is the appetizer!


The Youtube landscape is changing a lot and has become a massive success engine for social video marketing.

Education and Entertainment is the name of the game here, and your quality needs to be high in either your production value or the content you’re sharing.

Videos That Entertain

If you have a healthy, sizeable video budget, you can focus on higher production value, and create some impactful video advertising campaigns.

Creating a comedy video or something entertaining can get lead to viral success, and at the least, much more exposure and attention.

The biggest challenge people have with creating a comedy video is, “where do I start?”

The answer is, it’s not something you need to figure out all on your own. A great production company will help walk through the steps and get you something you’re comfortable with.

A great place to start is reading this case study on a comedy video that generated half a million dollars.

You can also find tons of great inspiration at the Youtube Leaderboard.

This is a page that showcases the best performing advertising videos.

The main takeaway here is that this style of the video needs to be kept very short, in fact, you have about six seconds to gain a viewer’s attention, so make it count.

Videos That Educate

If you’re dealing with a small budget, then the better route for you is an educational series.

For this style of video, you want high-quality information to be your focus.

It’s ok to have your videos run much longer now, anywhere from 3 – 15 minutes is common, and oftentimes the longer the better.

More and more people are flocking to youtube to learn, and it’s one of the biggest trends on Youtube.

If you’re going to dive into making video content yourself, you will need to overcome being camera shy.

The key to success with educational videos on Youtube is consistency. If you’re going to take this route, you need to post an average of once/week or else Youtube won’t consider you as a key player.

Yes, this can seem like a big commitment if you’re just starting out, but Youtube is a competitive playground, and this is the standard.

One way to succeed with this approach is to keep your production setup simple.

Get a simple camera setup, one light source, one mic, and you’re good to go.

Also, you may want to shoot videos in batches, so that you have banked footage. This will make weekly posting a lot more realistic with your busy schedule.


If you want to have major success in social video marketing, definitely consider Linkedin.

Currently, video ranks very high organically (without any ad spend), in the Linkedin feeds.

It’s one of the best free ways to get exposure on social media today, generating more than 300 million impressions on the platform last year.

Linkedin however requires a style of video different from Youtube and Instagram.

Because Linkedin was originally a networking platform and is rich with attention from corporate executives, it will be advantageous for you to showcase C suite members in your content.

If you’re a large office, get your C Suite out of their office prison and on video, and people will pay attention.

If you’re a small, lean team, then put yourself on camera as a thought leader.

Either way on Linkedin, people want to hear from The Boss.

Another thing that Linkedin suggests, is that your videos have a hook within the first 1-2 seconds.

There is a lot of competition for attention on Linkedin, and if you’re not straight to the point, you’ll get skipped.

Remember why people are on Linkedin, and it isn’t to watch funny videos. It’s mostly to network. So your videos need to add value in a business-related fashion.

For this platform, videos still need to be kept as short as possible.

For top of funnel promotional content, keep the length from 30 – 90 seconds, and you’ll have the best results.

Click-able call to action links in your description box, also do very well on Linkedin. Take advantage of this on Linkedin, because you can’t actually share links on Instagram posts.

LinkedIn says that posts with links, generate 45 percent higher engagement than posts without one.

Do I need to quit my job and make videos full-time?


Just kidding.

Just because there are different styles of content needed for each platform, you don’t need to get flustered.

If you’re wondering, what happens if I just post one style of video on ALL platforms?

I believe it’s worth a try, as long as you make some slight variations, and keep an eye on performance data.

There are ways you can streamline one style of video content for each platform.

For example, if you’re creating educational content, create a 5-minute video, and post it to Youtube.

On Linkedin, cut it down to 1-2 minutes.

Then on Instagram, cut it down again into several 10-30 second snippets.

Or, make a 10-second trailer to promote the longer version.

Boom! One style of video across 3 platforms.

Test It Out

You can attempt to do the same for other styles of video, such as:

  • Company culture
  • Behind the scenes
  • Promotional products and services
  • News and events
  • Case Studies

After all, much of your success on the platform will depend on your audience.

If you want to build new audience members, then individualize your videos with the tips above.

But if you have an audience that already loves your video content, then don’t be afraid to try sharing it across multiple platforms.

There’s no harm in trying, but just know that some styles of videos will perform better on certain platforms than others, and doing this will likely yield some lackluster results here and there.

But that’s fine- it’s data you didn’t have before.

Just make sure you’re following the best video lengths for each platform.

Ideally, you’ll be willing to create some content that is designed with the individual platform in mind AND be willing to modify your other platform’s content to match.

What About TikTok?

There are lots of opinions on how much to engage with TikTok, especially since it’s a trending new video platform.

However, it’s still very young and hasn’t reached the level of audience that Instagram, Youtube, and Linkedin have.

Additionally, it’s dominated primarily by youth and…is that even your demographic?

This leads me to a more important question.

What platform are your most ideal clients spending their time on?

Make that one the main priority.

You’ll get better results this way, then if you spread yourself thin trying to do video everywhere, always, in all ways.

If your audience is young, then yes you should be on TikTok!

If they’re older, they may not even know what TikTok is yet, so it’s better to spend your time where they’re more active.

Social Media Just Isn’t Your Thing.

Are you finding all this social media talk confusing and annoying?

Want to forget about all this stuff and do what you love instead?

I get that. Totally.

You may want to hire a professional video marketing team to take care of it all for you.

At UpMedia, we’re experts and style and length for each platform, and can take all the guesswork out of it for you.

Feel free to reach out if you’re allergic to social media and want video services to make your life easier.


Just getting started with video? Check out the S.A.V.E.

A woman raising her hands in the air, very excited, because she's saving tons of money on her promotional video.

By Anthony Madani

Anthony is the Director at UpMedia Video, and an expert at Video Marketing, with a rapidly growing business. He’s spent over 18 years in media production, from award winning television shows (on Netflix and HBO), to producing ads for large corporations such as Toyota, Flight Center, and Canada Life.

One person drawing on a whiteboard, educating another person.

Share This