Short Form Content & Video: How To Create Better ‘Snackable’ Content

By Rodney Laws | Marketing

Nov 07

Content is the backbone of any digital marketing strategy. Whether your company is B2B or B2C, or whether you are selling products or services, content plays a significant role in driving traffic into your marketing funnel, and moving those prospects towards the sale.

There are three main forms of content businesses can leverage for their marketing strategy. These are audio, video, and text. Several marketing materials can be created within these three content types. Examples are:

  1. Audio: Podcasts and voice notes
  2. Video: Explainer videos, case studies, tutorial videos, webinars, etc.
  3. Text: Blog posts and articles, eBooks and whitepapers, website copy etc.

And there are a variety of tools you can use to help you create these content types, from a video maker to help with explainer videos to an SEO plugin to help you write optimised text.

But while a combination of all these types of content is encouraged in any content marketing strategy, videos by far outperform every other content type. If they say a picture is worth a thousand words, then a video should be worth a million.

That is not to say that other forms of content are not doing well. Blog posts still rank as one of the most widely accepted source of information. The key is to find a balance and create a content strategy that incorporates these content forms to drive conversions and revenue.

What makes content short form vs long form?

In the world of content marketing, you are either creating short form content or long form content. There are several reasons why you may decide to pick one over the other. Both have their advantages and disadvantages.

Nevertheless, like every other aspect of digital marketing, you just have to test both to see what works for your business. With that said, short form content is all the rage right now. Especially short form video content.

Before we dive into why short form content is rising, below is a brief definition of both types of content and their benefits.

Long form content

Long form content can be in any format. It could be in video, audio or text. What makes it long form is the length of the file and the amount of time someone would need to consume the content.

For example, blog posts that range from 1,200 up to 10,000 words are considered long form written content. Podcasts or videos with a run-time of over 20mins can also be considered as long form content too.

One of the most significant benefits of lonj form content, especially blog posts , is the SEO rankin boost it offers. According to serpIQ, the average content length of first-page search engine results was an average of over 2,000 words.  

Dwell time is the reason why long form content ranks higher in search engine results. Dwell time refers to how long a user spends on your website. Long form content, (audio, video or text) increases this dwell time.

Short form content

They are defined as brief, snackable content that are designed for easy consumption. Written content between 200 to 600 words is generally regarded as short form content. Audio or video content with less than 10mins run-time is also regarded to as short form content.

As we hinted at in the beginning of this article, short form content is all the rage now. There are several reasons for this. However, before we dive into why short form content is on the rise, let us look at some of the advantages it provides:

  • Short form content are easier to distribute across social media
  • Short form content are easier to consume and remember, thus improving engagement rates
  • Short form content are easier to repurpose. A short video can be turned it into an article, infographic or social media post.
  • Short form content can also drive increase search engine rankings, especially if published regularly.

Why ‘snackable’ content is so tasty

Without a doubt, videos are here to stay. With platforms like Facebook, SnapChat, Instagram, (and even LinkedIn) prioritizing video, it is no surprise that videos are on the rise. And we are not just talking cat videos here.

A recent study by Animoto reveals that over 76 percent of small businesses say they can measure direct results from the video content that they create. That means businesses are now incorporating videos into their marketing mix – a recipe for success.

However, not all videos are created equal. According to Vidyard, 75% of videos created by businesses are under two minutes.

So, why is short form content rising in popularity? The answer can be broken down into the following:

Penetration of mobile phones and the rise of social video apps

According to Cisco research, by 2020, 75% of mobile traffic will be video. Literally, everyone has a mobile phone. With these phones come social media and video apps that make creating and consuming videos easy.

Additionally, according to the Q1 2018 Global Video Index Report by Ooyala, mobile devices accounted for 58% of all videos watched globally while tablets and PCs account for the others. What this means is videos are only going to keep growing.

Lower attention spans

Short attention span is another driving factor for the popularity of short form content. Studies have revealed that the average attention span of people today is about that of a goldfish. This is not surprising since we live in a noisy world with many things struggling for our attention.

If you cannot capture and keep the attention of your audience within the first few seconds, chances are that you will not have another opportunity again. In addition to content being attention-grabbing, it must also be bite-sized for easy consumption.

Content marketing can have a tremendous impact in your business. It can boost your search engine rankings, drive traffic to your website and increase your social media engagement.

Although short form content are on the rise thanks to the penetration of mobile phones and the low attention spans of people today, long form content cannot be ignored. They are a great way to build authority and increase your website’s SEO.

Short videos are definitely on the rise. However, at the heart of it should be context. You should not create videos just for the sake of it. Your audience must receive some sort of value from your content; otherwise, you risk losing their attention.