4 ways to make sure your film thrives on social media

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When executed correctly, film can elevate your business. Social media provides the perfect arena to showcase your brand to targeted audiences. In this piece, we’ll explore how to plan, shoot and edit film with social media in mind.

Research reveals that people have changed the way they consume film and video content online. In 2019, internet users worldwide have spent an average of 2 hours and 22 minutes per day on social networking and messaging platforms. What’s more, children and young adults now spend more time online than watching television.

It is crucial to think about how your audience will consume your film campaign. Producing film for multi-platform placements will rely on careful planning. But when done right, it could be your most successful campaign to date.

Here are four top tips to make sure your film shines on social.

Tell a compelling story

When we develop concepts for film at AB, we’re usually thinking about how to convey the brand, alongside two or three key messages, in the most engaging way. Don’t miss the opportunity to express your brand and message on social media.

Position your brand upfront. If users are scrolling through content quickly, you need to make a strong brand impression right away.

Captivating your viewers’ attention early is vital. Hook them in. With limited time to deliver meaning, the traditional story arc is reversed. You cannot include long, establishing shots. You need to tell an interesting story, fast.

It is important to think about this immediacy of storytelling during production to make sure you have the appropriate material during versioning.

Consider formatting during production

If you’re placing your film on platforms such as Facebook, Instagram and Snapchat, you’ll need to consider the framing of the final content.

If your film will be used on television, for example, you’ll be focusing on a 16:9 ratio during your shoot. But how will this appear on certain social channels? Many will refuse your content until the format is correct for the specified placement.

As an agency, we are mindful of these requirements when shooting.

These requirements were important to consider when creating The Maynard #Madeforgirls campaign film. The film would be placed on a number of channels and, as such, required multiple format edits. You can see an example of the film in various contexts below when placed on YouTube, Instagram stories and within the Instagram feed.

AB film & social media strategy - Instagram screenshot of The Maynard digital campaignAB film & social media strategy - Facebook stories screenshot of The Maynard digital campaign

Film & social media strategy - YouTube view of AB's campaign for The Maynard

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Create short edits

It can be tempting to share your entire film on social. You’ve put a lot of time and resources into the project and you’re proud of the result. However, when placed on social platforms such as Facebook, Instagram and LinkedIn, your audience is unlikely to sit through your masterpiece.

Users are confronted with infinite content, which is why it is important to capture their attention quickly. To do this, think about versioning.

A 2-minute film, for example, may be broken up into several shorter versions for social. These shorter edits are typically around 10-15 seconds each, designed to grab the viewer’s attention.

Some social media platforms set duration limitations. View a full list of video length specifications, including Snapads and Facebook and Instagram stories.

Provide captions for your viewers

85% of videos watched on Facebook are played without sound.

Does your film make sense in silence? Are captions enough to support the film’s meaning, or do you need more?

To overcome this, we often include integrated messaging using text and graphics instead of a voice over.  An example of this can be seen in the Annual Report film that we created for Knauf Insulation.

In terms of sound-tracking, your score may be pivotal to your whole film. But the chances of viewers hearing your carefully selected music on social media are thin. Think about sound as an additional element, rather than integral to the film’s meaning. It is there to support your messaging, rather than deliver it.


Upon shooting any film content, think deeply about where it will feature. Campaign planning must be rigorous in order to decide which channels your film will feature on. If you strategise your full campaign from the very beginning, your film will reach a greater number of people, maximising campaign success.

Get in touch to find out how AB can help you to achieve your business ambitions using film. Whether you’re interested in live action tv adverts, animation or an exciting digital marketing campaign, we’ll work together to find the right approach for you and your audience.

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Author:

Charlie joined AB after several years working with in-house marketing teams. She uses her experience writing about neuroscience and human behaviour to help brands create relatable campaigns. Specialising in social media and copywriting, Charlie loves helping brands to establish a meaningful online presence. When not in the office, Charlie can be found watching her favourite bands and visiting her favourite galleries.

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