Videos vs. Photos – Which Performs Well on Social Media?

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Among all social media channels, 62 percent of the marketers find Facebook to be the most effective. That’s why many brands start their marketing strategy with Facebook. 

There was a time when images were preferred over text. Now videos are dominating all social media platforms. Pinterest has joined the bandwagon as well by launching story pins. Marketers are now questioning the very existence of photos. Should they focus on videos only moving forward? Can videos and images co-exist?

To answer these questions, let’s have videos vs. Photo analysis…


Videos Make a Scroll Stop 

Its obvious videos generate more engagement with users. Videos force a user to stop and scroll and pay attention to a post. I am sure you can recall an instance. I can! Just today, I was scrolling my Facebook account and a video about Spectrum internet prices passed my newsfeed. I immediately scrolled back up to watch the whole video and even clicked on the link.

Modern consumers have gotten better when it comes to digesting content while scrolling. It’s easy to scroll through images without stopping but when there’s a video in the post, you inherently grab the user’s attention.

It’s not just the video’s ability to attract the user’s attention in a crowded feed that works. Social media platforms are now focusing to become video first platforms. They are prioritizing video assets. This explains why video posts/ads perform better than type of content.


Does That Mean Images Are Obsolete?

There was a time when images were all the rage. Things have changed now.

Even though videos are performing well, images still remain at the top when it comes to influencing people to click on a link on your social media handles. Videos are successful too but images are more successful if you want to drive clicks.

A survey by Visual Objects says that images can influence 25% of people to click through a site on social media. Videos, on the other hand, can influence only 16% of people. This means you shouldn’t neglect images altogether. Keep on using them in your marketing campaigns.


Videos or Photos? What’s More Engaging?

The answer to that depends on the type of campaign, your business, product/service and many other things. Images work better for some approaches and videos for others. Videos drive more engagement and even clicks but they are labor-intensive and require a high level of investment.

A video ad takes somewhere between 2 to 6 hours to produce whereas an image ad takes only one hour. This means some businesses will continue to use images on social media handles because they require little time and investment. This explains why brands are using both images and videos. 

What works for your audience?

Still confused about whether to use videos or photos for your social media channels?

It’s advised to take a deeper look into your product and service before deciding. The best way to find out what drives more clicks is to test them out. Keep everything the same – caption, ad copy, and the CTA and simply change the creative type. Whatever content brings the best conversion is your go-to type.

Remember one thing: a brilliant idea that’s targeted to the right audience is what actually drives conversion. Since creating videos is time-consuming, convert an image ad into a video and see how it performs. If you are appealing to the younger audience that uses mobile, videos remain a powerful tool.


Concluding Remarks 

So there is no definitive answer to whether videos or photos work best on social media platforms. You will have to test out both to determine which type of content drives the best results. Many companies have found success by creating campaigns using both videos and images. 

Don’t keep all the focus on the video vs photo debate. The goal is to encourage people to take action, not just drive traffic. You must make sure the clicks are made by the right audience. 5 quality clicks that convert are better than five thousand low-quality clicks that don’t drive any action.

Conduct A/B testing for monitoring the performance of your social media posts and ads. Don’t stick to one thing. One type of content may not work for all types of campaigns. 

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Kevin Benoit

Kevin Benoit is the editor of Parlé Magazine. He founded the magazine while in college and continues to run it today. Follow him on IG: @parlewithme Read more articles by Kevin.

Kevin Benoit has 1876 posts and counting. See all posts by Kevin Benoit

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