You know how some brands just seem to have videos everywhere across social media? They constantly post clips on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter — maybe even LinkedIn, too. It makes you wonder: How big is their marketing team? And for that matter, how big is their budget?
Here’s the thing. Yes, creating social media videos takes time and money — but it probably takes less of each than you’d think.
You see, you don’t have to make separate videos for every single platform. Instead, you can repurpose the ones you already have. It just takes a little research, a little editing magic, and voila — your videos can be everywhere, too!
Here’s how to repurpose your existing videos for organic (unpaid) content on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and LinkedIn. We’ll also cover a few key best practices for creating your videos in general, to make sure you’re crafting the best content no matter where you share it.
With 2.89 billion monthly active users, Facebook is by far the largest social media platform. It’s also one of the most popular platforms for video. This makes Facebook a prime place to reach a large audience.
Take advantage of the network’s size by repurposing videos that highlight your brand and product. We’ve found that tutorials or how-to guides, product launch announcements or big brand moments, and broad awareness videos perform well across Facebook. And, according to a 2018 study, 78% of U.S. consumers said they made purchases based on things they first saw on Facebook. That means you should use the network to keep your brand top-of-mind among B2B buyers.
Also remember that people are on Facebook to make connections, so aim to create social media videos that help them feel plugged in to you and your community. Repurpose content that highlights your company culture and customer success stories to show the human side of your brand.
There are two ways to share existing video content on Facebook: News Feed videos and Facebook Stories.
“78% of U.S. consumers said they made purchases based on things they first saw on Facebook.”
These videos live on your company’s page and appear in the main feed of the people who follow you on the platform. News Feed videos are one of the easiest ways to reuse content, as they can be up to 4 hours long and can be square, or horizontally- or vertically-oriented. The platform’s algorithm tends to favor long videos, but the sweet spot for user engagement is between 2 and 5 minutes.
Piggybacking on the success of Snapchat and Instagram, Facebook introduced its Stories feature in 2017. Facebook Stories are short, vertical videos that appear right at the top of your followers’ feeds and disappear after 24 hours.
This format seems to be working for businesses: Facebook reports that more than 60% of people said they became more interested in a brand or product after seeing it in Stories.
Since you don’t have much time (just 20 seconds!), you have to get to the point fast in your Facebook Stories. You can also add text, emojis, and stickers to your videos to help convey your message.
Twitter is making a name for itself as a hub for social media video, with watch time increasing 67% year over year.
People go to Twitter to “discover something new and interesting,” so it’s a good place to share snappy edits of content that lives on your website (along with a link, of course!) or advertise upcoming events such as webinars, product launches, or grand openings.
For example, we repurposed a clip from Gear Squad vs. Dr. Boring, our cartoon for B2B marketers, to share on Twitter:
Twitter videos can be any aspect ratio between 1:2.39 and 2.39:1 — so with a little care, you can edit existing horizontal or vertical video content without losing too much context. The platform allows videos from 0.5 seconds to 2:20 minutes in length (which, not at all coincidentally, amounts to 140 seconds, the original character limit for Tweets).
Remember Twitter content has the shortest lifespan of any social media platform, so don’t be shy about Retweeting or reposting your videos to get the most possible value from them!
Instagram hit two major milestones in 2020 — it turned 10 years old and passed the 1 billion global user mark.
Engage the platform’s massive user base by posting video content, which generates 1200% more shares than text and image content combined. Some Instagram video types that work well for B2B brands are product videos, behind-the-scenes content, and previews. (Do you have a webinar on your website? Promote it on Instagram with a trailer!)
There are three ways to repurpose existing content on Instagram: organic feed videos, stories, and IGTV videos.
These videos, which can be up to 60 seconds long, live on your profile page and show up in your follower’s feed. Instagram supports aspect ratios of 16:9 (landscape), 1:1 (square), and 4:5 (slightly vertical), so be mindful of the editing boundaries when repurposing video that was shot vertically (9:16) so you don’t cut off anything important!
Introduced in 2016 to compete with Snapchat, Instagram Stories work just like Facebook’s — they’re short, vertically-oriented videos you can dress up with text, stickers, and emojis. Instagram Stories max out at 15 seconds, but the platform will automatically cut up longer content into several consecutive videos.
Keep in mind, repurposing horizontal video into a vertical format like Stories is generally not a great idea. You can zoom in to fill the frame and risk losing context, or otherwise post a tiny horizontal video within the vertical space that will likely be too small to grab viewers’ attention.
Instagram’s answer to YouTube, IGTV can host long-form videos up to an hour in length if you’re using the desktop version and 15-minute videos on mobile. These videos live on your Instagram profile page, as well as a special IGTV-only tab. While it is possible to post horizontally-oriented content on IGTV, like Stories, vertical video is best.