Video is taking over the internet. Literally. More and more consumers are watching videos on their PCs or their smartphones, and it’s estimated that video makes up 80% of global internet traffic.
80%?! Consider how often you google how-to complete a home project and you end up watching a YouTube video, or watch a video while researching recipes, or click on a video while scrolling social media.
The internet is dominated by video, so if your brand isn’t using this tool, you could be missing out on the tons of potential customers that prefer video. Video advertising on platforms like Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram, can be particularly effective at capturing views and engagement. 👀
On Twitter, a tweet with a video is six times more likely to be shared than a tweet with just a photo. That shows the popularity of Twitter and the potential for your business to maximize the medium.
If your brand hasn’t used video before, that’s OK! It’s not too late to start and it isn’t impossible to learn. You don’t necessarily have to be in front of the camera and it can take under an hour to produce a video for your business. Let’s break down how to use video ads on Twitter.
You Can Create Several Types of Videos on Twitter
The first thing to note is that there are different ways to utilize video advertising on Twitter. It’s not a one-and-done thing, so it’s important to review the various options and pick the right one (or multiple!) for your brand. 📹
If your business hosts or attends live events, short videos of the event can be easy fodder for an advertisement and catch consumers’ interest. You could create a video montage of highlights of the event, a quick clip of the headlining speaker, or a cameo of someone(s) saying hi.
Videos of live events work well because they feel authentic, it’s not a scripted video of actors but real people in a real setting. Ideally, the energy of the event can be felt through the video and advertising creates buzz 🐝 around the live event and your biz.
You can create a specific product video to introduce one of your brand’s products or services. Remember, this advertisement could be seen by users who know your brand and those that don’t, so be clear about who the service/product is for, what problem it solves, how it works, and how to purchase it.
You can also add in testimonials from customers, which helps add validity to your service/product. A clip of customers explaining why they like a particular service/brand can be hugely motivating to potential customers. 👍
A product video should be just enough to explain what the service/product is and entice consumers to click to learn more or purchase. Persistence in this advertising can really pay off because consumers become more comfortable with your brand over time.
Think of the popularity of Rothy’s after repeated Facebook advertising. With good video ads and persistence, your business can also see big results.
Are you expanding services? Hosting a live event or webinar? Have a new blog post, ebook, podcast, or other product?
Quickly summarize your new offering. This is one instance where it does help to be in front of the camera to explain your new product/service. Watch engagements rise as people connect with you!
Tell a Story
Can you quickly tell a story about your brand in six seconds? 🕕 Of course, you can! This TED Talk video shows how 1000 different, complex TED Talks can each be distilled into six words. If you can take a dense subject like a TED Talk and condense it into six words, you can definitely create a video story about your product/service/brand in six seconds.
You aren’t limited to six seconds by Twitter, but I want to encourage you to make your videos short and attention-grabbing from the first second, otherwise, people may click on. Waiting too long to showcase what the video is for or taking too long to set up the story could mean someone scrolling past.
If needed, a 15-30 second video can go more in-depth on your story, or if you have more to say you can use a six-second clip entice people to click through to your website to see the rest of the story.
How Do You Optimize Your Videos for Ads?
Native Twitter videos, or videos that show up in the app (as opposed to a link to YouTube) work best. It’s also important to make sure your videos are optimized for the platform. Every platform is slightly different, so don’t assume what works on Facebook or YouTube is going to exactly work on Twitter.
Video advertising on Twitter is more successful if you follow these specs:
1. Target your ad content
This is an obvious statement, but I am still going to say it: target your ads to content that is relevant. This will help you reach more engaged potential users and maximize your advertising dollars.
I know it’s a “duh” statement 🤦♀️, but if overlooked, you are missing out on easy conversions. Twitter calls this type of video advertising “endemic pairing”. An example of endemic pairing would be an advertisement for a sports drink before a clip of a game or highlight reel. Your brand is given a boost right off the bat because you’re reaching more relevant customers, which helps to increase KPIs.
2. Make Your Videos Short
Keep your videos short, like reallllly short. Internet users have short attention spans, so videos that feel long and pointless are going to see little engagement and lots of closing before watching the full video.
If you remember Vine (which seems so long ago 👵 and so recent at the same time!) will be familiar with the six-second format. Twitter takes a nod from Vine and automatically loops six-second videos, which is an added bonus for short clips.
Make Sure Your Videos Work Without Sound On
The vast majority, as in 85%, of videos played on Facebook are watched without the sound turned on. Twitter users probably aren’t vastly different, so make sure your video makes some sort of sense with no audio. 🎧
If you think about playing a video without audio, it makes sense not to have a talking head that won’t make sense to viewers (unless there are captions) and to place an emphasis on graphics, images, and writing across the screen. Make your message clear!
Keep Your Message Simple
This tip plays into the previous paragraph, but it deserves its own header for emphasis. Keeping your message simple makes it easy for viewers to understand the video and more likely to share. Don’t take too long to introduce yourself on a 15-second video or start babbling about outside information.
Craft your message, and then simplify it. Ensure it makes sense for an audience that has never heard of your brand before. Simplify that message so it fits neatly into a six-second loop. It’s complicated, but this skill of distilling your messages will serve you well in all your marketing efforts.
Twitter users love GIFs. I mean, who doesn’t?
Twitter users particularly love GIFs, and they can do nearly as well as actual videos. In fact, a third of Twitter “videos” are actually animated GIFs. That’s because Twitter doesn’t support GIF files, so users have to convert them into MP4 video files to upload them to the platform. Conversion is quick and free on multiple websites, like this one.
How to Set Up Your Video Ad
Upload Your Video or Go Live
Uploading your video is pretty straightforward and there is no time pressure. How about going live? That’s a little scary for some folks 😨, but these step-by-step instructions can take the mystery out of the process.
- From inside your Twitter account, click the tweet button
- Click the live button on the next screen
- Type your tweet (for example, explaining the reason for the live session) and hit the big red button that says “Go Live”
- You’re live on Twitter! As you record, Twitter will count the length of the video
- As soon as you finish, you’ll be able to see stats on who viewed the video
If you don’t want to appear in person on your Live, there are a ton of different video creation and editing tools for free online. In under an hour you can probably: find a new tool, familiarize yourself with the interface, find some images to use, write dynamic copy, and put all the pieces together in a short video.
Create the Campaign
So you’re ready to create a video advertising campaign on Twitter. Congratulations! 🎊🎉
Here’s what to do:
- Set a budget for the campaign
- Use automated bids
- Pick three creatives, and turn off Twitter’s network partners, so the ads only show on Twitter profiles and search results
- Create your audience. This involves targeting relevant countries, adding in relevant interests, adding “follower look-alikes” for Twitter accounts that would be interested in the ad, and include your own followers.
- Add a trackable link to the ad, so you can see how many clicks your video advertising is generating.
Every brand wants more engagement and higher KPIs in online advertising. Video advertising is definitely the way of the future and should be considered for your marketing efforts today.
Creating a video ad is not dramatically more difficult than creating another type of social media ad, and can have significant results. Video isn’t the golden ticket though — you have to create a video that people enjoy watching, which usually means short, engaging, and works well without audio. 🎥
As with other social media ads, test different creative options. That way, when you scale up your ad, you can choose the best-performing creative. Twitter is only the start of video advertising. You can also place video ads on Facebook, YouTube, and more!