The Psychology of Short-Form Content: Why We Love Bite-Sized Videos

Short-Form Content

In the fast-moving world of digital marketing, every business tries to get their target audience’s eyes glued to screens. Short video marketing happens to be the most recent and compelling trend within this domain. From Instagram Reels to Twitter videos, making a buzz through little video segments took the online world by storm. Such is the impact that even long-form content platforms like YouTube are now focusing on bite-sized videos to match how people watch online content today.

When asked how they’d like to learn about a product or service, 44% said a short video.

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What’s really behind this meteoric rise of short-form videos? Does this popularity of short videos present a big opportunity for your business?

This guide will walk you through why short-form video is popular and give actionable tips to help you succeed with this bite-sized content.

Short Form Videos: Why Do We Love Them?

But why would users scroll to consume multiple short-form videos when they could complete just one long-form video? What was the psychology driving the massive success of short-form videos? Let’s dive in.

1. Instant Gratification

According to the psychology of content, short-form videos will engage the typical modern viewer who craves instant gratification. To this end, a compact video content strategy triggers the reward center in the head. Hence, people feel good about watching videos that are short and to the point. Moreover, it not only overtakes the viewer but also lures the viewer to come again for more. Hence, it commands great usage when it comes to digital content.

2. Decreasing Attention Span

Research says that attention span has markedly decreased in the last decade.

Attention Span

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This decreasing attention span drives today’s content consumption habits and sets the popularity of short-form content. The immediate question that pops up at this juncture is: Are there an increasing number of bit-sized videos because of emerging trends, or are they causing a decreased attention span? This interrelationship again between the developing media trends and the psychological transformations caused by them proves the multicausality that characterizes the process.

3. Ease of Consumption

It’s the short-form content that makes them fit for quick consumption, either during little moments of spare time or moments between tasks in a daily routine. That is yet another characteristic, that best aligns it to be short-form content consumption for a mobile-first lifestyle. People who view should be able to interact with the content at a moment’s notice as they do things in today’s fast-paced world.

Short Form Vedios

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4. Variety and Discoverability

Psychological perception of content on sites like Instagram highly depends on the nature of the operating algorithms that altogether contributed to such a comprehensive and diverse array of content to appeal to ad users’ instincts and keep them engaged on a site for hours. 

Similarly, the video content strategies are selected using an algorithm that not only looks into the background of the user but also filters the video that would be most attractive to the users. Furthermore, it produces more passionate engagement through an appealing cycle of getting addicted to particular genres in which users’ real lives and behaviors are reflected.

5. Community and Interaction

Short-form content platforms always devise a sense of community and activity through comments, likes, and shares, among others. These mechanisms increase the audience’s engagement with the material through comments and opinions, and viewers sharing the content with other people. Such interaction increases the dispersion and virality of the content while looping consumer engagement. The more the item has views and takes a lot of traffic, the more the creator benefits, apart from the platform that enjoys high user return rates and engagement.

6. Creative Expression

Short-form has opened up a new way of expressing creativity. Targeting real people rather than perfect professionals, Short video brings relevancy to that authenticity audiences are craving. The authenticity of small video clips is the key characteristic of everyday creativity about the user’s interests. Thus, it is possible to consider that not only do they associate themselves with the content directly, but also that it is much more thrilling and vibrant, and this makes a solid connection with it possible.

7. Emotional Touchstones

Probably one of the best formats to elicit very strong emotions quickly is short-form videos. Emotionally, many of these videos strafe the viewer; and provide humor, surprise, or empathy, and sometimes, there comes the inspiration.

8. FOMO and Social Proof

Trends travel at breakneck speed, and people are basically wired to the anxiety of FOMO as years progress in this digital age. Short-form videos further play into that anxiety with everything being time-bound and urgent. The speed by which trends break out and fade from contention drives users to hang onto the trend so that they would not miss out on any new famously trending video or challenge.

9. Anywhere, Anytime

Today, we might often be too busy to do anything else, but we can watch short-form videos at any place and any time by knowing that we have time to watch them until the end. No matter whether we are queuing in a bank, commuting on a train or bus to work, or simply waiting before an appointment, watching short-form videos on our phones fills this blank space with great ease.

How To Make Short Videos?

The use of short videos is a new unexplored trend that you can easily capitalize on to create a larger audience reach. In this section, I will provide key pointers on how to create simple yet effective short-form content for social media platforms.

1. Plan Your Content

To begin with, it’s possible to recommend searching for what is popular in your mainstream right now and what topics can be hot. Hashtags to find out what idea prevails at the moment. This is important because such topics will give your content algorithmic visibility and will allow you to gain a lot of views if you use them at the beginning of your account’s activity.

You also need to follow the latest trends, which are currently viral on social media platforms. This is because one can try popular dances, give a reaction to weird food mixes, or do a hot meme to capture the viewers’ attention.

This is much more effective than beginning something utterly brand new. Challenges allow you to give your twist to the things people already enjoy.

But do not go running after almost every available trend there is without reason. As for the topics and subjects, remain relevant to your brand and what you represent as a company. This will help you create real connections and bring in more loyal viewers over time.

Choose 2-4 trending themes or challenge ideas, then write 2-4 short video ideas or stories based on them. It is not necessary to draw an exact plan at the moment and try to anticipate all the issues meticulously. It’s only necessary to abstract the key idea of each concept in a sentence or two.

2. Tools And Equipment

It is now possible to make creative and impactful short video content just using your smartphone and a few additional attachments.

Here is a comprehensive list of tools and equipment you’ll need:

Smartphone or Camera: It is not necessary to spend a lot of money on a camera; in fact, you can use a smartphone that has a decent camera as well. But, if you’d like to invest some extra bucks, DSLR or mirrorless cameras provide better video quality and versatility.

Tripod or Gimbal Stabilizer: A Tripod is very crucial when doing steady and static shots, the gimbals are very important for smooth and more natural, handheld shots giving a much more professional look to videos.

External Microphone: It is essential to be concerned with how the audio sounds. External microphones are much better than the built-in ones; lapel microphones are useful for voice recording, and general use involves shotgun microphones.

Lighting Equipment: Gentle lighting goes a long way to making a difference. Using natural light is good but the ring light or soft boxes can add that polished look and also are good for low-light settings.

Editing Software: This phase is where most of the creative input comes in and where your video is transformed. There are some available online editing programs, which are free or paid including iMovie, Adobe Premiere Rush, DaVinci Resolve, etc., which are basic or advanced tools that allow cutting and editing videos, color correction, etc.

Creative Elements: Furniture, sets, and outfits can bring attention and communicate your video’s tone or concept better. Make them interesting but do not use them as distractions.

Scripting and Storyboarding Tools: Using a script or a storyboard in planning your content also guarantees that your message is powerful and precise. Resources such as Google Docs for the scripts and Canva for storyboarding can go a long way.

3. Engage Your Audience

It is not easy to lure viewers within the few seconds they spend watching an advertisement and retain their attention up to the final frame. Thus, having an originally interesting concept defines a base, but further to keep the audience’s focus, a certain idea should consciously ‘pull’ attention.

Stay Updated: Monitor the specialized trends of the present moment using such tools and platforms as Google Trends, Twitter, and TikTok.

Be Quick: Trends are unpredictable. This is the reason they should be capitalized by creating as well as publishing content while they’re popular.

Relevance is Key: It is important however to ensure that the trends you opt to associate with your brand or message. Audiences appreciate genuine products or services more than they do products that are in line with the latest trends.

Also, make sure to incorporate Call-to-Actions (CTAs). High-profile call-to-actions are very helpful because they give adequate directions. Make it abundantly clear what the next steps that viewers should be taking — get them to click the link below, type ideas in the comments, and mention friends.

When directions are missing, the target audiences enjoy good content but are not motivated to do anything beyond that.

Are You Ready to Give the Short-Form Video Content a Go?

It needs to be understood that the fundamental psychological modeling behind short-form videos cannot be attributed to a singular factor. Starting from adapting to the feature of low attention span and that one has to get things done immediately to meeting social needs to having an outlet to express creativity, these videos tap into the human subconscious.

If you would like to tap into this but need assistance with making short-form videos or any other marketing services, get a free consultation from an expert at DealsInsight.

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