Our Insights

Beyond the Horizon: Why Vertical Video is a Must for Your Next Social Campaign

March 20, 2024
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As a rule, we often ask clients for vertical video to accompany digital campaigns. The reason? It’s time for us to think outside of the box… well more accurately, to think outside of the television screen. Horizontal video was king when television was… but now that consumers walk around with a phone in their hand all day, advertisements need to be right-sized for this new experience.

Vertical video has become increasingly important in social media ad campaigns. That’s because more than half of all online video content is viewed on mobile devices, and over 90% of social media users access platforms through their mobile phones. Everyone from your teenage niece on TikTok to your parent or grandparent scrolling Facebook are accessing social media from their phone.

Vertical videos are shot and viewed in portrait mode and take up the entire screen of a mobile device, providing a more immersive and engaging viewing experience. This format eliminates the need for viewers to turn their phone horizontally, making it easier for them to consume content on the go.  I know, it may not fit your idea of what great video content looks like, but trust me, from an advertising perspective, it is. As wise marketing minds will tell you, myself included (wink/nudge), just because something doesn’t appeal to you, doesn’t mean it won’t speak to your audience. I know I said to trust me, but I’m guessing you’d like some facts to back that up. I can deliver on that too. Keep reading.

Including vertical videos in social media ad campaigns can lead to higher engagement rates and better performance. That’s the goal for nearly every campaign, right? We’re already doing everything on our end to ensure optimal engagement and performance, but vertical video helps too. Studies have shown that vertical videos also have higher completion and click-through rates than traditional horizontal videos, as they are more visually appealing and capture the viewer's attention more effectively. Vertical videos are particularly effective in social media ad campaigns because they are designed to be viewed in a mobile feed, making them a natural fit for platforms such as Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat, and TikTok. Even digital video giant YouTube is getting in on the vertical video action with YouTube Shorts. Now, more than ever, to keep our clients on top of their game in the digital space, we’re encouraging the use of vertical video assets whenever possible. 

What we recommend for our clients are videos as short as 6 seconds and up to 60 seconds in length, with 9:16 aspect ratio and 1080x1920 resolution. Most Meta (Facebook and Instagram) viewers watch without sound, so consider including captions to be sure to get your message across. Adding in captions not only makes for a better user experience for viewers who otherwise would miss the voiceover messaging, but it also makes your content accessible for the hearing impaired and has been shown to help with YouTube SEO. 

So, would you do yourself a solid and include vertical video in your next social media ad campaign?  Engaging, visually appealing content that’s optimized for mobile viewing leads to higher engagement rates and better performance. Combine that with our expertly crafted media buys and you’ve got yourself a winning combination to carry your brand well beyond the horizon.

Suzanne Shaw