f you are not creating and putting out short-form videos into the world, you're missing out on a tremendous opportunity to market your brand to millions. With the recent domination of platforms like TikTok, Instagram Reels, and YouTube Shorts, short-form video content has taken center stage as the most engaging and cost effective way for brands to connect with their audiences right now. In this article, we'll explore why it's essential for you to incorporate short-form video content into your social media video marketing strategy. This hopefully isn't news to you, but will encourage you to invest in a plan for making sure you have an abundance of video content so you can post daily — not sporadically whenever you or your team has time to whip up a video.
Organic social media growth is a long-term investment, but over time it can provide a better returns compared to paid advertising. While paid advertising can be effective, it can also be expensive, and there's no guarantee that you will even break even in the amount of sales you'll generate compared to your ad spend. With organic growth, you can reach your target audience for a fraction of the cost, and you'll start to see how building an organic group of fans, community, and loyal customers will compliment your retargeting tactics deployed in paid social digital ads.
One of the primary video marketing benefits of short-form content is its ability to reach thousands, even millions of people for little to no cost. The algorithms of TikTok, IG Reels, and YouTube Shorts are designed to get you viewership when you accurately cater to the right audiences. Additionally, short-form videos are easy to consume, making them a great way to reach a wider audience. By creating and sharing engaging video content, brands can increase their reach and get their message in front of more people than any other medium or content format.
Not only are videos a highly shareable form of content, they tend to receive higher engagement rates compared to other types of content, such as text or images. Meaning they receive more likes, shares, saves, and comments.
Investing in organic social media growth allows brands to build a strong and engaged community of followers. By consistently creating high-quality content and engaging with your audience, you can establish your brand as a trusted and valuable resource. A strong community of followers can provide valuable feedback, drive word-of-mouth marketing, and help to establish your brand as a thought leader in your industry. Coconut Cult is a brand that has not only built a huge following on social media, they have some of the best engagement out there, speaking to how cult-like their community really is. Their engagement rate on Instagram is an astounding 4.09% — compare that to the industry standard of a "good" engagement rate sitting between 1-3%.
Short-form video content is an excellent way to tell your brand's story and convey its brand voice. Storytelling videos garner some of the highest viewership on the internet, so being able to tell stories about your brand's values, mission, and products through video is incredibly powerful. This type of content is also an effective way to showcase the human side of your brand, giving your audience a glimpse into the people behind the company. After all, people would rather connect with a person they can relate to rather than a brand that's trying to get them to buy their products. Think of short-form video as a way to tell the brand's founding story, customer stories, and give viewers behind-the-scenes context of the making of your brand. One of our favorite brands that does this exceptionally well is Mid-Day Squares. Check them out at @middaysquares on all channels for some of the best video marketing examples that are anchored in storytelling and are true to their brand.
Short-form video helps increase trust and credibility for your brand, especially when other people are creating content talking about your brand.
One of the biggest advantages of user generated video content is that it is authentic. Testimonials, recipes, honest reviews, and other forms of UGC immediately provide social proof — like visual reviews — without it being forced. Unlike brand-created content, user generated video content is not filtered through a marketing lens. Instead, it reflects real experiences and real opinions from real people. This authenticity is highly valued by consumers, and works wonders in building trust and credibility with your audience.
By deploying UGC across your own handles, organic and paid, as well as having users and influencers post the content is a comprehensive distribution strategy to build trust and credibility through your content. Need general video content and UGC ideas? Download our free 31 day social media video content calendar and use it as your social media playbook for each month.
Before short-form user generated video came onto the scene, brands relied on expensive agencies and video production companies to create professionally produced video content. On top of that, script development, camera equipment, camera crew, actors, and a director are all additional costs that go into creating a beautiful branded video. Now content is largely created by anyone on our smartphone cameras, which can capture stunning footage effortlessly. TikTok and Instagram's in-app editing capabilities as well as other simple editing tools out there make producing a mobile video incredibly easy. Not only that, users actually prefer lo-fi, self produced content over cinematic branded content. We are at a point where increasing quality of phone cameras, the hyper-growth of TikTok over the past few years, and user generated content are all providing relevance to each other and rewriting the rules of brand marketing.
Short-form video content is the most cost-effective way to reach your target audience and beyond. Not only is it easy to produce with the availability of smartphone cameras and easy-to-use video editing tools, distribution is free! TikTok, IG Reels, and YouTube Shorts pushes your videos out to thousands of people at no cost to you. If your plan is to invest in higher quality videos down the line or ramp up paid social, posting regularly on these platforms allows you to test what type of content does well before you increase your advertising and content spend. Not to mention David Greenfeld, the founder of the geometric plant-based frozen treats brand Dream Pops, said on a recent interview with Startup CPG, "you put up a post, you get 10 thousand views, that's a stadium's worth of people seeing what you posted. That is so rare, and it's not gonna be like that forever. You have to take advantage of those platforms while they have that reach."
Self-producing video content or leaning on UGC is also much more cost effective than relying on influencers to produce and post content for you. While influencers are powerful, they can be costly and risky when evaluating ROI. Focusing your efforts on creating a steady stream of short-form video content so you can grow on social media and build community is a must before investing in influencers.
If you're still using still images for your Facebook Ads, shame on you! Let's look at some stats.
Video is the superior content form for paid social ads because it has several advantages over other forms of content:
Video content allows you to showcase your product or service in away that is easy for the viewer to understand. You can demonstrate how your product works, highlight its benefits, and give your audience a better understanding of what you have to offer. This can be especially important for complex or unusual products, where a visual demonstration can be the most effective way to communicate. This is extremely helpful for newer brands that are challenging traditional categories and user behavior, and need to educate consumers about their product.
If you're already investing the time, energy, or money into creating a video for social media, why not repurpose it across other channels like your emails or your website? Especially if you are selling your products online, the following stats should convince you to look into embedding videos onto your site pretty quickly:
A great example of a DTC food brand that does this well is JOI. Check out their website here
Getting on a grocery store shelf is a huge milestone when launching a new CPG product. But selling on those shelves is an even bigger battle. Short-form video is a helpful tool for breaking into grocery retailers as well as building the relationship and driving shelf velocity. Use your social media growth and your viral videos as leverage when pitching to stores. Use video as a way to partner with them for joint marketing efforts. Add the retail partner as a collaborator on Instagram so you can borrow each other's social media audiences. Check out this example from Upton's Naturals highlighting Whole Foods as one of their retail partners.
In conclusion, short-form content offers several video marketing benefits for food and beverage brands looking to improve their organic social media presence. This type of content can reach thousands or even millions of people, is easy to consume, and typically receives higher engagement rates compared to other types of content. Short-form videos also allow businesses to tell their brand story and showcase the human side of their brand. User generated video content can build trust and credibility with the audience, and short-form video is a cost effective way to market on a budget. Additionally, using short-form video content can increase conversions on paid ads. Investing in organic social media growth and producing high quality short-form video content can help businesses establish a strong community of followers and a trustworthy brand identity. Whether you're just starting out or looking to take your strategy to the next level, now is the time to build a strategy for creating and sharing high quality video content that will engage and delight your audience. Don't know where to start? Download our 31 day social media video content calendar with video marketing examples that you can repeat and repurpose for the year.