Do us a quick favor: pull out your phone, open Instagram, and use it for a minute or two. We’ll meet you back here in a few.
Great, you’re back! Take another few seconds and think about what stood out to you during your time on Instagram. Maybe you saw a few photos of your friend’s kids, a motivational graphic, or a product promotion. What we know for sure is that during your scroll, you more than likely saw a video or two.
Depending on how you use Instagram, you may have automatically begun watching Instagram stories, Reels, or even IGTV. Even if you spent the whole time scrolling, you probably scrolled past a plethora of videos.
Video is by far one of the most prevalent content types being used on social media right now. Its use had its origins on YouTube, but other applications like Vine (RIP), Snapchat, and TikTok were created primarily for video content.
Other text-heavy social media platforms, like Facebook and Twitter, are making the switch over to video. One Facebook executive predicted that their platform will be all video and no text by 2021.
Instagram, which was created as a photo-sharing platform, has now highly integrated video into its platform. Over the years, the app has essentially copied other successful video social media sites and adapted their distinct features to fit their platform.
Here are some other staggering statistics about the relationship between video and social media:
In short, the use of video is vital to our success and reach on social media.
We know that video is one of the most powerful tools we can use on social media, but when we consider all of the different types of videos out there, it can get a bit overwhelming.
Not only are there many different types of videos you can create, but there are also multiple social media platforms you can share videos on. If this wasn’t enough, platforms like Instagram even have further subcategories of video types within their app!
(Since we are talking about social media here, we will keep the focus on how you can utilize video on your social account. If you want to know more about how you can use video in your overall digital strategy, check out our blog about it right here.)
Here is a brief list of the possible social media platforms you can use video on:
There are some crossovers between some of these apps. For example, there are options to share TikTok videos directly to your Instagram page. The majority of these apps have in-app capabilities to directly record video content, but many of them rely on posting from other platforms such as YouTube or Vimeo.
There are thousands of different types of videos you can create for social media. You can create teaching tutorials, product reviews, funny parodies, and more. What types of content you create will depend upon the social media platform you choose.
The type of video mode you choose to use, which we will cover next, will also depend on your purposes for video.
Here is a list of examples of the video mode types you can use for social media:
There will undoubtedly be many more types of video you can utilize to share content in the social media sphere. For now, these are the most popular types that don’t seem to be going away anytime soon.
The glove of social media video is not one size fits all. Depending on your church or non-profits goals and target audiences, your manner of sharing video will change. You also have to consider where your audience watches videos the most. There are many statistics out there about where your audience spends their time on social media.
Once you have ironed out your platform, you will want to decide the modes that will be most effective. Unfortunately, this decision may be a matter of following the wave of trends.
Right now, Reels on Instagram are highly prioritized over most all other content on the platform. But because social media is constantly evolving, the next prioritized type of media online could be completely different a few weeks from now!
For right now, here are a five ways your church or non-profits can utilize social media videos.
This use of video is probably the single most important video type in 2021. Live streaming can be as simple or as complicated as you want it to be. It can be as easy as setting up a smartphone on a tripod and parking it in the back of the sanctuary. It can also be as advanced as setting up multiple cameras, utilizing professional sound engineering, seamless transitions, live hosts, and more. Regardless of how simple or produced your live stream is, this must be a part of your video tool belt.
Depending on your audience, ramping up your jump clip videos is highly beneficial to your overall reach. These videos are designed to be consumed quickly; they are short, sweet, and to the point. They are also highly dependent on short-lived trends, so it takes a bit of research to utilize them effectively.
Take a look at trending audio and music on these platforms and create your own “remix” of the video. The Father’s House in Orange County is a great example of a church that hops on the trend wagon very effectively.
These Instagram videos allow users up to 60 minutes of uninterrupted content, so there are many ways you can utilize them. A highly effective way of using IGTV is sharing short sermon clips from your weekly services. While you can certainly upload the entirety of a sermon video, you can also upload a short section of the sermon instead.
This is a great way to give a preview of the message and hopefully encourage your audience to watch the whole sermon on your website or YouTube and even spur them on to join your service live the following week.
This Facebook exclusive feature is a hidden nugget that can be highly beneficial to churches, especially those who operate mostly online. This is a great method to use if you want to ramp up engagement with your audience and facilitate a conversation.
You can utilize this feature for sermon discussions, small groups, book studies, and more. This method encourages further engagement and can be a great way to connect your community members.
There are many different platforms you can use to facilitate Q&A’s with your audience. You can be brave and do a live Q&A where people submit their questions in the live stream comment feed or you can ask people to submit questions ahead of time and share your recorded responses.
Q&A’s were very popular in 2020 with the worldwide shutdown and continue to be a popular part of many social media accounts. You can have so much fun with these and even bring on fresh faces that your congregation or audience does not normally see.
As our world begins to embrace the popularity of online video content, how we share and create videos will continue to expand and evolve. As trends change, we must be willing to change as well. We also have the freedom to have a ton of fun with our videos and engage people in multi-faceted ways.
However you choose to use video, you can rest assured that you will be reaching people exactly where they are. You can make their video consumption not just a passive daily activity, but a possibly life-transforming experience where they hear the Good News.
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