As of 2023, video content is a major driver of online growth across all the most popular social media platforms. It’s now easier than ever for people to watch and share videos, or stream their favorite shows and movies at any time and from anywhere. This has completely transformed user’s expectations and made video content the new marketing norm across industries. So if your business wants to take advantage of this opportunity to increase your visibility online, it’s clear that your social media strategy should include video. 

In this guide, we look at why video content is so important for social media optimization in 2023, and provide insight on how to reach your target audience and grow your business online. 

Video is the Biggest Marketing Tool in SMO Right Now 

Whether you’re a big-time brand or a small independent business owner, knowing how to use social media effectively can have endless possibilities for anyone looking to up their marketing game. That said, platforms roll out new features and updates constantly. So, how do you “hack” the algorithm to get your business in front of more social media users? The answer, according to many industry professionals, including the head of Instagram, Adam Mosseri, is relatively straight forward – video.  

Video content has become an increasingly important aspect for social media success for many businesses and brands, and this trend shows no signs of slowing down. Let’s look at a few statistics from a 2022 social media video marketing survey by Wyzowl:  

  • 91% of businesses use video as a marketing tool in 2023  
  • 95% say video content helped increase brand awareness 
  • 91% say video content increased website traffic  
  • 90% say video content generated new leads 
  • 87% say video content increased sales 

In the same survey, 89% of end users said a business’ video convinced them to buy a product or service, and 91% said they want to see more videos from brands in 2023.  

Not only is video content great for boosting your online presence, but with a social media optimization strategy it’s also an incredible versatile marketing tool that can have a huge impact on your sales, reputation, customer service, and so much more.  

What is Social Media Optimization? (SMO) 

Social Media Optimization (SMO) is a marketing tactic that uses real time analytic data and insights to maximize the social media presence of your brand or business. This involves continuously tracking and refining your social media strategy to improve content performance by identifying successful methods to keep your audience engaged and interested. 

Social Media Platforms Favor Short Form Videos 

With the rise in popularity of video-only social media platforms like TikTok, video is clearly what consumers want more of. Even platforms like Twitter are seeing 10x more user engagement on video content. In response to this popularity boom, algorithms across social media sites now prioritize short videos over photos and text content due to its ability to drive user engagement.  

To keep up with users’ evolving preferences of short-form video content, YouTube launched YouTube Shorts, and as of February 2023, the feature garners a whopping 50 billion daily views globally. Major social media platforms like Instagram and Facebook (known jointly as Meta) are now also heavily promoting new short form video features such as Reels. 

What is Short Form Video Content? 

Short form video content is any video that is a minute long or less. This type of content is quick and concise, making it ideal for today’s busy consumers who are constantly bombarded with vast amounts of information. Given the overwhelming amount of content available, people tend to consume content rapidly and may abandon posts before finishing them. On the other hand, short videos cut to the chase, capturing users’ attention and increasing the likelihood that they will stop scrolling, view the entire video, and stay engaged until the end.

Social Media Users Are More Likely to Engage with Videos 

Even before the pandemic, social media user’s video watch times had been increasing. In 2019, users watched an average of 6 hours and 48 minutes of online videos a week, which is a 59% increase compared to 2016 statistics. Now in 2023, most users expect the brands they follow on social media to post entertaining, informative, and engaging video content. Not only do they want to see it, they want to share it! According to a 2021 Biteable survey of small business owners and marketers, video content gets shared on social media 1200% more than text and image posts combined. 

Plus, of the over 1 billion people on TikTok, 67.5% of them are 30+ years old, which means video content is clearly popular no matter your age. So if your target audience is anyone between the ages of 10-60+, they are probably already engaging with videos on social media platforms that your business is on too. 

Creating Video Content is Easier than Ever Before 

For businesses and brands today, creating video content for social media has become more accessible than ever before. With a smartphone, virtually anyone can film high-quality videos and most of the top social media platforms now offer built-in editing tools that make creating and publishing video content incredibly user friendly. While videos may require a little more effort than just snapping and sharing a photo, these tools present a valuable opportunity to create engaging video content without the need for professional equipment or technical expertise. 

Video Content Has a High ROI 

A 2021 Biteable survey found that 74% of marketers agreed that the ROI on videos is higher than that for still images. This is likely largely due to the fact that video content can be repurposed and shared on multiple social media platforms allowing businesses to reach new audiences and providing a higher return on their investment. 

This social media “hack” has been successfully used by many businesses and brands to boost their presence on popular platforms for years. For instance, TikTok videos can also be shared on Instagram Reels because both platforms use a 9:16 video aspect ratio. The same is also true for YouTube Shorts, and Pinterest Video Pins.

Plus, if your Instagram business account is connected to your Facebook business page, you can have all your video posts, and stories automatically shared on both platforms at the same time. You can even break up longer videos to make multiple pieces of short form content to share across all of these different social media platforms.  

Video Content is Great for SEO 

Even though social media doesn’t directly affect your rankings, getting lots of engagement on the content you share can still positively impact your search engine optimization (SEO) strategy.  

As we know, social media algorithms prioritize video content and tend to push it to more users. This means the more engagement your content receives the more users are likely to see it, which in turn can lead to more new traffic to your website from users interested in learning more. With more people visiting your website, this can indicate to search engines that your content is useful which can help boost your SEO efforts.  

Social media videos are also a powerful tool for building a trustworthy reputation with your audience, which can also impact your SEO efforts. Video is a great way to humanize your business and create an emotional connection with your audience. This can be a huge asset in increasing visits to your website and boosting your rankings.   

Optimize Your Social Media Marketing Strategy with West County Net 

Including video content in your social media strategy can help you reach more users, build trust with your audience, and increase visits to your website resulting in more sales. In other words, if your social media strategy doesn’t include video content, your business may be missing out on valuable opportunities to grow.  

At West County Net, we have been leveraging the power of social media on the behalf of our clients, large and small, since its inception. We use analytics, goal tracking, and social insights to make sure that your campaigns are optimized for maximum success. Are you ready to level-up your social media marketing strategy?  

The SMO specialists at West County Net can help you manage your social media presence — so you can focus on doing what you love while we help your business grow.

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