You’re not the kind of leader who chases every new trend. You know better. While other businesses waste time and money trying to keep up with what’s hip, you’re focused on what works. You’ve seen the data showing that video content increases engagement and drives revenue. That’s why you’ve made video part of your marketing strategy.
But now you’re wondering if it’s time for an update. Over the last few years what looked like a vertical video trend seems to have become the new standard. And it has you wondering: Why is vertical video important for business?
There are several reasons why businesses need vertical video to succeed in the modern world of online video marketing. Here are three that every smart business leader should consider.
1. Vertical Video is Mobile Ready
The internet has gone mobile. That means your videos should too. As of 2021, more than 56% of all web traffic came from mobile devices. In fact, mobile internet surpassed desktop way back in 2016. So for half a decade, people have been more likely to view your video on a handheld screen than on a desktop or laptop computer. That’s why Google has put so much emphasis on mobile-friendly websites, and it’s why your business should be making mobile-friendly videos. When it comes to video formats, a vertical video orientation fits the brief.
When you think about how you most commonly hold your phone, it makes sense why vertical video is the way to go. Vertical video fills the whole screen on mobile, which minimizes distractions and keeps the focus firmly on your message. When you use the whole screen, details are larger and easier to see.
Sure, the viewer could rotate their phone to watch your 16:9 aspect ratio video full screen. The question is, will they? Spoiler alert: probably not.
More importantly, why would you want to make it more difficult for people to watch your video? In the time it takes the viewer to rotate their phone, if they bother to do so at all, they’ve missed the beginning of your message. They’re distracted, annoyed, possibly uncomfortable.
Make it easy for them to watch your video. Make it vertical. That means you should be creating in 9:16 instead of 16:9.
2. It’s Better for Social
Social media platforms know the statistics above. They know that people are more likely to access the internet with their phones than on a desktop. They also know another essential statistic. Among people who use mobile phones, 85% are active users of social media and 99% of those use their phones to access social media apps. To look at this pattern from another perspective, 79% of social media site visits happened on mobile devices in 2019.
If you plan to share your video on social media as part of your video marketing strategy, you should be making a vertical video. Some platforms, including IGTV, Snapchat, and TikTok were created specifically for vertical video. Using these platforms the way they were intended increases the odds that the platform will prioritize your content. This puts you in front of a broader audience.
Even on platforms like Youtube, which still operate mostly in the 16:9 aspect ratio, you’ll find some vertical videos. Usually, these are short-form videos designed by creators who want to make their content as shareable as possible.
You may have seen data showing that vertical video delivers better engagement and marketing results. And it does. That’s not because a vertical orientation holds some magical message-boosting power. Vertical video improves results because it fills the screen, fits the platform, and meets user expectations. In fact, that last point is so important, that it’s worth digging into.
3. It Delivers What Viewers Want
The thing that really makes vertical video important for business is its ability to meet customer expectations. Vertical video has become so ubiquitous that it’s what consumers expect to see. Giving them what they want means they can focus on your message, not your format. Of course, there is value in surprising viewers, but aspect ratio isn’t the right tool for the job. You’ll be better off delighting them with your interesting storyline, your innovative characters, or your high-quality product.
More importantly, if you insist on jamming a 16:9 aspect ratio video into a 9:16 hole, you might give viewers the wrong impression. They could jump to the conclusion that you’re out of touch, not paying attention, or slow to adapt. That’s probably not the perception you’re aiming for.
How to Make Video More Versatile
Even though vertical video is important for business, there are still places where the 16:9 aspect ratio makes sense. If you plan to distribute your video as an ad on television, streaming and OTT services, or on YouTube, you’re better off with the classic format. But that doesn’t mean you have to limit yourself only to 16:9. Take a look at the example below.
We designed this ad so it would fit the classic 16:9 display, but could easily be cropped down for vertical applications.
If you only have the budget for one video and you want to make it as versatile as possible, making a croppable video might be your best solution.
So Why is Vertical Video Important?
Vertical video works because it fits the technology we have today. It’s mobile-first and social media ready. It shows that your business is paying attention to what customers want.
That doesn’t mean it’s the right choice for every possible platform. And it certainly doesn’t mean that vertical will be the dominant format forever. But right now, and into the near future, vertical video is a powerful and valuable part asset to your marketing strategy. If it’s not part of your mix, you’re missing out.
Start making your first vertical video today with help from the video experts at IdeaRocket.