What makes videos effective on Twitter?

There has been a big increase in video content on social media, and Twitter is no exception.

Twitter’s own statistics say that videos are six times more likely to be retweeted than photos, and three times more likely than GIFs. But what is it that makes video on Twitter so effective?

Twitter partnered with Omnicom Media Group (OMG) to test 17 brands over seven verticals in an attempt to examine what makes videos successful. The social platform also collaborated with Neuro-Insight to come up with some interesting observations on the most successful video content.

Videos elicit higher response

Twitter video ads seem to elicit a high response on the platform, adding:

  • 80% more memory encoding
  • 53% more personal relevance
  • 8% more emotional intensity

Branded video ads on Twitter seem to work naturally on the platform and this makes the audience more receptive to them. There also seems to be a connection between autoplay and effectiveness, as videos that activate autoplay seem to generate slightly higher memory responses.

This creates a memorable experience and it serves as an ideal encouragement for brands to create more videos.

Short videos are more memorable

It has been observed that short videos of 15 seconds or less are more likely to drive memory encoding compared to longer videos of up to 60 seconds. This means that brands can use video content in the same way that they tweet, aiming for brevity and minimalism through their messages.

Moreover, sound doesn’t seem to affect the impact of the video, as memory encoding seems to be equal both with the sound on and off. This is additional proof that video content on social media can still be effective without sound, provided that it still has a powerful visual message.

It’s the first impression (and video) that counts

When Twitter introduced the idea of First View, the placement of a video in the feed’s top position for 24 hours, it already knew how effective this position is. It has been confirmed in this case that users’ receptivity is better right at the start of Twitter session. Thus, the first video sees a 22% uplift on all the metrics, comparing to the next videos.

The impact and the reception may also depend on the time of the day, eliciting a different reaction on each occasion. Brands now realize that the science of video content is all about understanding users’ behavior and what they want to see on their news feeds at each part of the day.

For example, the morning may be more positive and informative, while the evening should be more entertaining and fun.

What grabs users’ attention

It’s challenging nowadays to appeal to a demanding audience and Twitter users tend to prefer scrolling through a feed rather than stopping to click on things. However, they are still willing to pause and watch a video, especially if it has:

  • An early story arc
  • The presence of other people
  • Emotional intensity
  • Relevant content
  • Text or subtitles

These indicate that people seek out appealing and relevant content with emotional appeal and a story they can relate to.

What makes the perfect Twitter video?

To summarize Twitter’s suggestions, here’s the secret formula for an effective Twitter video:

  • It has to be memorable
  • It has to be short
  • It has to be relevant
  • It doesn’t have to include sound
  • It has to tell a story
  • It has to make people stop scrolling in their feeds

All in all, it is important for a brand to understand its audience and create videos that align both with their users’ and the platform’s needs. With video content being so popular and effective, can you afford to ignore it any longer?

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