How to create effective videos for Facebook

If you’re not using video in your Facebook posts and ads, you probably should be. But how should you go about getting it right? Here are our top tips for making the very best of Facebook video.

1. It’s all about the content

It’s all too easy to scroll on by; Facebook users are facing a constant barrage of information, and if your video doesn’t stand out, your efforts will be wasted. You’ve got around 3-4 seconds to grab the viewer’s attention or you’re sunk. In practice this means telling great stories in a powerful way. Know your message, know your audience, and work out what will create an emotional hit for them from the opening frame. Look for compelling imagery, things which target the emotions - or raise a question and hook people to find out more.

2. Keep it short

Facebook’s recommendations suggest your video should be around 5-15 seconds depending on placement. Some research suggesting that a mere 6 seconds is the ideal time for maximum engagement. (you can read more here if you’re interested).

With such a short time to tell your story, you’ll need to hone your message and convey your brand in a way that’s clever and to the point.


Creating video for Facebook


Give your video every fighting chance. Changing the shape can have a surprisingly large impact on results (read more about this). Go square to capture more of the screen on a mobile device, putting your video more prominently in front of your viewers. And make sure that you get the file format and encoding right – don’t spoil all your hard work with a poor quality upload. Facebook has its own guidance on this here:


Don’t create videos which rely on audio.. Most people turn this off, so your video needs to tell its story without the need for a soundtrack. By all means use one, but to enhance rather than narrate. Instead, use captions, graphics and images which speak for themselves.

5. Know your objectives

Of course it should be obvious that you need to know what your video is about before you start shooting (or animating). But this goes deeper. Are you aiming to convert viewers to sales or bookings? Are you looking to increase followers or drive traffic to your website? Or are you hoping to create a video which gets shared widely. All of this will affect not just the contents and style, but also where you position your video and how you set up the post. Plan well and you're more likely to see great results.

6. Optimise your title, description and call to action

In an ideal world, you would A/B test everything that sits around your video ad to fine tune its performance. There’s a lot of great research out there which can help to guide you on the best titles and CTAs, but ultimately every audience is different. If time and budget allow, split test each element to get the best results. Cmall incremental gains make a big difference when you add them all together. 

7. Go live!

Facebook live video opens up a whole new world for live events. Stream an existing face-to-face event live to involve more people. Or create live video events specifically for Facebook – it’s the new and exciting way to replace a live webcast with something much more engaging. Read our top tips for Facebook Live events here.
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