Why Short-form Video is the Most Powerful Marketing Tool in 2023 (+ Some Tips and Tricks!)

Short-form Video

Last updated - June 1, 2023

Humans’ attention span has shrunk enormously in the past decade. So much so that even goldfish have better concentration than us. And that’s not even a joke! 

It can be partially attributed to the technological conveniences we are getting used to and perhaps the hectic lifestyles where individuals have little to no time. 

This is one of the reasons why short-form videos have become so popular and platforms like TikTok, Youtube Shorts, Instagram reels, etc., are thriving.

However, where such videos have become a source of quick chuckles, they have also opened new gateways for marketers, becoming one of the most powerful social media marketing tools right now. According to a recent survey by Upcity, nearly 1/3 of small and medium business owners spend less than $1,000 on video marketing annually

The following article will analyze this emerging trend from different angles and determine if it’s worth investing your hard-earned money. 

So let’s jump into it without any ado! 

What are short-form videos?

A short-form video does not have a proper definition in terms of duration. This is because the definition of “short” differs from platform to platform. 

On Facebook, a short-form video might mean anything from 60 seconds to 3 minutes. While on Youtube, it can be a video of around 5-10 minutes.

Similarly, if we talk about platforms like TikTok, the duration is confined to between 15 seconds to 2 minutes. It’s all about the norms of a particular platform. 

The Influence of Short-form videos in modern marketing: 

Well, in an age where everything is in a rush, those who are the quickest win. The same statement holds in marketing as well. 

Your audience doesn’t have time, and you must respect that. Short-form videos are of great help in this regard. 

According to statistics, about 68% of users will happily watch a business video with a duration of under one minute. 

Moreover, About 93% of businesses have landed customers through short-form social media videos. Plus, people share videos twice as any other online content. 

According to a marketing trends survey conducted by Hubspot, about 51% of marketers who used short-form videos last year are willing to invest more in this medium, with 38% planning to invest the same amount!

The current trends in short-form videos:

Now that the effectiveness of short-form videos is out of the question, let’s discuss some of the most discussed trends every brand is going to follow this year: 

More explainer videos 

The use of explainers has been there for quite a while, and it doesn’t seem to be going any time soon. Why? Because everyone has problems.

And as long as you can provide them with practical solutions, there’s always a way to integrate your brand message within. It can be a simple how-to, DIY, or even an educational video on various relevant topics. There are many styles that you can opt for. 

More behind the brand videos

Most business owners these days don’t give behind-the-brand much importance. But the reality is that modern marketing campaigns run more on authenticity and connection than the product itself. 

And uploading videos that show the working mechanism, office environment, and how things work promotes that quite well.

According to a research study published by Sprout, 72% of consumers feel more connected to a brand when the CEO actively engages with them on social media. 

Product teasers 

Product teasers are a great way to build anticipation around your brand and product. However, such videos are greatly platform-oriented. 

This means it would be better to use them on platforms where short-form videos are already famous. For example, TikTok, Instagram reels, YouTube shorts, are your ideal choices. 

You can also use them in your social media stories if you already have built audiences there. Many brands are using it to enhance their engagement. A free tip… don’t let curiosity die! 

User-generated content

In a world where marketers and advertisers are inherently untrusted, conventional ways of marketing are a partial, if not a completely hopeless endeavor. Especially when compared to UGC. 

Guess what? Nowadays, people need authenticity, the prime reason UGC is 2.4 times more likely to be trusted when compared to other marketing videos, and why it is thriving in 2022.  

UGC can be in many forms, including a simple Instagram image, TikTok video, product review, testimonial, or a Youtube podcast that focuses on a specific product after the hands-on experience. 

Since brand loyalists mostly create these, the chances are that your product will be presented in good light, with constructive feedback that you can use to your advantage.

There are also chances that you will make new and loyal consumers, ultimately resulting in a community. Just one piece of advice, never fake it! Your audience will find out anyway. ;

Influencer marketing

Well, believe it or not, influencer marketing is all the rage this year. And that’s not just another overly exaggerated vague statement. In fact, it’s backed up by pure and concrete data

The influencer marketing market has grown from $1.7 billion to a whopping $13.8 billion since 2016. Moreover, the industry is projected to reach a value of at least $16.7 billion at the end of this year. 

Influencers are considered experts in their niche by their followers. So much so that their audience would blindly take action on just one suggestion. 

Perhaps one of the reasons why 89% of marketers say that ROI from influencer marketing is better than or at least comparable to any other effective marketing channels available right now. If you are already interested, here’s a 5-step guide to help you get started! 

Making a compelling short-form video 

And now comes the section that I promised you in the title; the know-how of making a fantastic short-form video that will captivate, inspire, and compel your target audience. So let’s get into it without any ado: 

Make a perfect bait

Well, that comes off a bit awkward to say. But still, when you reach out to your target audience on social media, you are in a fishing spot where everyone is trying to pitch the perfect bait.

And the only way to increase your chances of getting a fish is to lure it with something that stands out, something that is irresistible. Yup, I’m talking about your thumbnail and title.  

Image Source: Backlinko

A killer title consists of a perfect combination of many ingredients. Following are some of them:

  • Coherence: It should be coherent to the context of the video and clearly tell the audience what they can expect after the click. Do not make vague titles. A clickbait may or may not get you a view, but it definitely destroys viewers’ trust. And in your case, brand loyalty.  
  • Pain points: It should touch the audience at places where it really hurts. A single problem affects people in many different ways. Figure out which one’s the strongest, and try integrating it in your title. 
  • Urgency:. It’s easy for a video to get ignored if it does not give your target audience an instant rush! It may be in the form of a limited-time offer, a quick tip on finding the easiest solutions, or anything that can excite them. 
  • Relevant thumbnail: If your title is compelling, a perfect thumbnail will make it irresistible. Research suggests that humans process images 60000 times faster than text. As they say, a picture is worth a thousand words. 😉

Make a strong intro

Your audience’s social media feed s cluttered with thousands of videos popping up every minute. This means catching and retaining their attention will need something compelling right at the beginning of your video.

According to statistics, about 65% of the audience members watching the first few seconds will continue to watch it up to 10 seconds, while only 35% will continue to watch it up to 30 seconds. 

A great short-form video intro includes: 

  • Concision: Yup! Where a pinch of storytelling might work perfectly in conventional ads, short-form videos mean straight business. You must convey maximum information in minimum time. So keep your sentences short and fun to keep your audience on track.  
  • Clarity: To increase your chances of retaining the audience’s attention, you must give them a promise in the first 3 seconds. It will clear their expectations and help keep them to the end. 

Keep it short 

Did you know that the average video length on Facebook, Youtube, and Instagram is about 18 seconds, 26 seconds, and 11.7 minutes? Well, now you do!  A rule of thumb is to make videos shorter than the usual length found on a specific platform. 

Analytics suggests that social media videos with less than 60 seconds length retain about 60% of the audience by the end. The percentage goes up to 80% when the length is 30 seconds. 

Image source: Vidyard

But does it mean that you should stick to the 30 seconds length? Absolutely not! We will make our video even shorter, even if it’s 10 seconds. 

Remember, the shorter the video, the easier it is to finish. Moreover, since most social media audience is mobile users, they won’t waste their data on an advertising video! Getting the idea?

Optimize your videos 

When you promote your product through video content on multiple channels, you deal with an audience with entirely different behaviors and preferences.

This means you can’t shoot out the same content to your Instagram audiences that you just used on Facebook. 

Social media optimization is crucial if you want any video to succeed, not just short-form! As an example, let’s talk about Facebook videos. 

A well-optimized Facebook video is:

  • Square-sized: Over 81.8% of users use Facebook on mobile phones. The advantage of using a square video on Facebook is that it catches about 78% of the screen while scrolling. With such a significant size, you have a better chance of catching their attention. 
  • Visually meaningful: About 85% of Facebook videos are watched without sound due to the website’s default settings. This means your video should be able to get the message across even on mute. You can utilize captions for this purpose. However, Kinetic typography can be your best option. 
  • Concise: According to Facebook Study, successful videos provide 47% value to the audience in the first 3 seconds, while 74% in 10 seconds, with an overall video length of 21 seconds. What’s the takeaway? Use the first seconds wisely. Avoid standard logo intros and get straight to the point. 
Image source: Social Bakers
  • Well-titled: More than 2 billion searches take place on Facebook every day. A highly descriptive and SEO-optimized title will make sure that you stay visible on the screen. It will help you get more views. You can also use a hook to increase your chances. 
  • Highly personalized: Personalized content means targeting your audience with a specific type of content that they’d find valuable. About 91% of consumers are more likely to shop from a brand that recognizes them as individuals and sends them relevant offers and recommendations. It’s hard, but it’s worth it. 😉


Short-form videos are getting immensely popular among marketers for many reasons. They are watched more, are impactful, and can persuade anyone when used the right way. 

In this article, I tried to shed light on this growing trend from different angles and present a facts-based perspective regarding its present and future. 

Plus, how they can be your most powerful tool in modern marketing. Hope you found my two cents on the matter helpful. 

See you in the next one!

The following video is a great resource to learn about the available explainer video styles in the market:

Further reading


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