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  • April 22, 2024

There are so many different types of social media video platforms out there that even I get confused. So today I want to break it down for you all the different types that you need to know about.

The first family of formats I want to introduce you to are the news feeds.

These are the classic types of places to post video content. Generally, the aspect ratio you want to post to these formats are wide or square. When you make a post to the newsfeed, it’s intended for people who follow you because that’s how newsfeeds work. One thing to note, is that they do have different video length limitation, for example, Facebook and Linkedin support videos that are much longer, whereas Twitter feed post only supports up to 140 seconds.

The second group is popularized by Snapchat and now we commonly associate as Facebook Stories or Instagram Stories, or depending on where you’re from WhatsApp stories as well.

The stories format is always in vertical. Depending on the platform, they could be in 15 second chunks or 60 second chunks. And the unique thing about stories is that they disappear after 24 hours. So it is really Intended to be timely ephemeral content.

The third group popularized by TikTok are now referred to as Reels.

These are TikTok, Facebook Reels, Instagram Reels and YouTube Shorts. These are also in vertical format as opposed to feed posts and stories that are intended for your followers, Reels are intended for people who don’t currently follow you. They are short form content that’s designed for discoverability. There are different video length limitations as well, on TikTok you can have a 10 minute video now but YouTube shorts limits you to 60 seconds.

As for the last category I have YouTube in its own class.

YouTube itself is the second largest search engine in the world and YouTube videos also appear on Google search results which is the largest search engine in the world. So while on the other platforms’ content tends to be ephemeral, they don’t last very long. On YouTube, It gets indexed as search results and keyword based searches will find your video for many years to come. So those are the four major categorizations of social video formats right now and those would be Newsfeeds, Stories, Reels and Search Engines. So next time you’re creating video content, try to decide on which platform you’re focusing on and tailor your content for that unique dynamic on that platform. And hopefully you learned a thing or two and I’ll see you in the next video.