Short-form video content is taking over social media platforms like TikTok, YouTube Shorts, and Instagram Reels. In 2023 alone, a whopping 92% of Internet users reported watching online videos every week—with the average viewer clocking nearly 17 hours of watch time. That’s a lot of time and attention, with short-form video content eating up a growing share of watch time.

Luckily for creators of all stripes, it’s never been easier to make great video content. If you want to succeed with your video marketing today though, you need to master the art of creating engaging short-form videos that grab attention and keep your viewers hooked.

Here are our 10 proven strategies to help you succeed with bite-sized video content—no matter the niche you’re in.

Short Form Video Tips

1. Hook Viewers in the First 3 Seconds

Since all short-form video platforms allow users to quickly swipe away you only have a few seconds to stop the viewer from scrolling away. Focus on creating irresistible 3 second hook at the start of your vide using bold visuals, snappy text, or an attention-grabbing statement. If you are able to summarize what the viewer will learn or why they should watch the video at the start this can keep viewers engaged.

If the user swipes away within the first 3 seconds, they won’t watch your video. That’s why the initial hook is crucial. If people aren’t watching, your videos won’t grow in the algorithm, and your account’s growth will stagnate.

2. Keep it Short

It may seem obvious, but it’s important to keep your videos short. In the world of short form, shorter is better. Remember, viewers’ attention spans are short when they browse videos. While longer videos can perform well, it’s important to hold people’s attention for the length of the video, which is simply easier in a shorter video.

Ideal video lengths for each platform:

  • TikTok: between 24 to 31 seconds long
  • YouTube Shorts: 15 to 60 seconds long
  • Instagram Reel: 7 to 15 seconds long

3. Post On a Regular Schedule

Consistency is crucial for building a loyal following on short-form video platforms. Post new content every 1-3 days to maintain a steady presence without burning out. Being in for the long term is better than making many videos and fizzling out. Depending on your schedule you could record a few short-form videos on one day of the week and slowly release them through the week or month depending on how often you post.

RightBlogger video idea note

Use a content calendar or a simple note to plan your posting schedule and stay organized. For our RightBlogger YouTube channel we just use a simple note in Notion to keep track of ideas.

4. Keep It Simple

Make your short-form videos easy to understand. Simplify complex topics, cut the jargon, and break things down so that most viewers can understand what you’re talking about. Use clear visuals and punchy text overlays to get your message across fast.

It’s also important to think about your target audience. Are they new photographers who might need an explanation of what aperture is, or does the video target professionals where you can skip over the term’s explanation? It’s likely the former and you should typically spend time making the topic as accessible as possible.

You should also try to watch your videos on mute. Do they still make sense? If not, add more visual cues like subtitles, arrows, and captions. Tools like CapCut and Submagic allow you to easily add captions burnt onto your video so viewers can understand your videos without audio.

5. Never Stop Improving

Final Cut Pro Tips on YouTube (Screenshot)

Set aside time each week to learn by watching tutorials, take courses, and learn new short-form video trends and techniques. It’s best to always stay curious and keep leveling up your skills in filming, editing, and SEO to stay ahead of the curve. After you’ve been creating long enough you’ll tend to pick up on techniques people are using in their videos.

6. Steal Ideas from the Best

Find the top short-form video creators in your niche and study their content strategy. What formats are working well? How do they structure their hooks and CTAs? Adapt their tactics to create your own original, share-worthy content. You can typically find trending content on explore/discover pages.

7. Test Different Video Formats

Experiment with various short-form video formats like tutorials, product testimonials, FAQs, listicles, day in the life, and more. Put your unique spin on trending templates and see what resonates with your audience. Out of ideas? try our TikTok video idea generator.

8. Repurpose Your Greatest Hits

Dig through your analytics to find your top-performing short videos. Identify what elements made them so popular, then create fresh variations with a new angle or updated info. Turn one great idea into a repeatable format to build views fast.

You can also explore adding more context to your viral videos. This could easily be adding more information about the subject, what happen after it went viral, or simply just re-editing the content for a different context.

9. Engage with your Audience

Ryan Robinson recording a video on iPhone

Building a true connection with your audience is key for long-term success with short-form videos. Reply to every comment, ask questions to spark discussion, and feature user-generated content to make your viewers feel valued. Many platforms like TikTok and Shorts even have ways to reply to user comments with a video.

10. Optimize for Search

Help your short-form videos get discovered by optimizing your titles, descriptions, and hashtags for search. Weave in relevant keywords and tap into trending hashtags to boost reach. Most platforms now act as a search engine allowing viewers to search what you say in a video making it easy for viewers to find your content.

Bonus: Monetize Your Top Videos

As your short-form video content takes off, start planning how to monetize your influence. Look at how top creators in your niche are partnering with brands and selling their own products. Brainstorm authentic ways to weave relevant offers into your videos.

This could be as simple as affiliate marketing by showcasing the benefits of a product to your audience’s niche. Collaborating with brands to create content that promotes their products. You could also focus on directing users to engage with your long-form videos where monetization potential is higher.

What is Short-Form Content?

Short-form content is a dynamic and engaging type of media that quickly communicates messages to the audience, typically within 60 seconds or less.

In an era where most people feel overwhelmed with media choices, short-form content has risen to prominence across popular social media platforms like TikTok, Instagram Reels, YouTube Shorts, and even LinkedIn.

This type of content is short but impactful, offering fun, informative, or promotional material in a way that’s easy to understand and share, this is why it’s often called “snackable”.

The essence of short-form content is not just in its duration, but in its ability to capture attention, convey a story or message succinctly, and prompt immediate action from viewers.

Short-form often leverages catchy visuals, quick edits, engaging audio, and attention-grabbing hooks to stand out in a crowded social media feed. From a business and creator perspective, mastering short-form content is crucial for reaching and resonating with audiences, especially younger demographics who prefer quick and visually appealing content over lengthy articles or videos.

Short-form content is versatile and can be adapted across various niches, from fashion and beauty to tech and education. It’s an excellent tool for brand storytelling, product showcases, tutorials, testimonials, and more.

By mastering this content format, creators and brands can enhance their digital presence, boost engagement, and drive meaningful interactions online.

It’s Time to Master Short-Form Video Content

Conquering the world of short-form video content takes creativity, experimentation, and persistance. Use these tips to craft irresistible videos that stop the scroll and keep viewers coming back for more on TikTok, Instagram Reels, and YouTube Shorts.

Andy Feliciotti on camera

Whether you’re making videos for yourself or a brand these content marketing strategies are a great way to grow an audience. If you are looking for more ways to grow read our list of tips to grow on YouTube Shorts.

Remember, mastering short-form video is all about adapting to the latest trends and formats while staying true to your unique voice. Now get out there and start creating the kind of snackable, shareable content that puts your brand center stage!