Social Video, Video Marketing

How to optimize your Facebook & Instagram video ads for success

Oct 3, 2019


Instagram and Facebook video ads are extremely popular among marketers these days. Not only are they more engaging and entertaining, they’re loved by audiences across all industries. Here’s why you should continue to invest in video ads and some ideas for how to improve your existing strategy.

Why your Facebook and Instagram success depends on video

Here’s what the latest research has to say about it:

  • 73% of people (yes, people on earth) use Instagram. Out of all those users, 69% of them spend their time watching videos on the platform.
  • Facebook gets over 8 billion average daily views on videos.
  • Videos are the most engaging ad type on both Instagram and Facebook.

There are plenty of other great reasons to invest in your video content and distribution strategy on these platforms. But the points above illustrate one very important point: Instagram and Facebook ads are both popular and effective. Now that you know why they’re so important, here’s a closer look at how you can improve your strategy.

6 creative ways to improve Facebook and Instagram video ad performance

1. Prioritize production value.

High quality footage (whether original or licensed) is a must. The minimum recommended resolution for Instagram video ads is 600 x 315 pixels.

2. Text should take up 20% (or less) of your video.

This also applies to video thumbnails for both Instagram and Facebook.

3. Choose attention-grabbing intros over branded ones.

Video ad space should be all about providing value in the first 3 seconds (especially on mobile). Save the brand building for your feed.

4. Create your videos with mobile optimization in mind.

Speaking of mobile, users shy away from full screen experiences, which is why you should use either vertical or square sizes when filming for Instagram.

5. Make sure your message gets across even without sound.

85% of Facebook video ads are seen without sound because the platform automatically mutes content in feeds and some phone models will too when on silent.

6. Include real people whenever possible.

Interviews and quotes from non-celebrities keep your video content relatable. Plus, seeing a human face associated with your brand helps build credibility and trust in your brand.

How to optimize, analyze, and perfect your marketing videos

  • Test multiple videos per target audience until the best performing one wins. Start with roughly 10-12 options until you reach the top 2-3.
  • Pay special attention to the Cost Per Lead and Return on Investment numbers. These will help you be more strategic about ad spend.
  • Focus ad spend by eliminating video that target underperforming groups. Instead, reinvest in what works best for your brand.
  • Balance specific videos with broad ones. For every one super niche topic you post about, follow it up with a more general subject so new audiences can join in the fun too.
  • Always add targeted hashtags and locations to your videos.
  • Preview your Feed layout ahead of time. There are several free tools you can use for this. Overall, try to balance out your video to photo ratio. And make sure each video preview matches the existing color scheme or at least compliments the rest of your Feed by using a free grid drafting tool.
  • Ask Instagram audiences to poll, survey, rate, and slide in your videos. It’ll improve engagement numbers and help you learn more about what your audience responds best to.
  • Use Swipe-Ups if you have more than 10k followers or Link-In-Bios for less than 10k.
  • Capture attention with quizzes, trivia, and questions. Viewers need a reason to take action after they’ve watched your video and these simple CTAs keep the conversation going.
  • Prioritize in-feed ads over Stories. They perform better and are eligible to be featured in Instagram’s Explore section if they get enough engagement.