Forget horizontal or vertical—marketers find success with square-shaped videos on Facebook
- Some brands and agencies are seeing success with square-shaped videos, also known as videos with a 1:1 ratio, on Facebook, according to Ad Week.
- Digital agency Laundry Service found that view rates for square videos are 28% higher than for the traditional horizontal video format.
- Square-shaped videos' view-through rates are 54% higher during the first 10 seconds of a video, and viewers are 67% more likely to watch a full-length square video than a horizontal one.
Video is a powerful content type and has been proven to be the way to go on mobile, but it does pose issues for marketers. The usual debate is over horizontal vs. vertical video, but it looks like a third option—square-shaped videos—may have a strong argument going for it.
While YouTube is geared for horizontal video and Snapchat for vertical video, square video is the standard on Facebook’s Instagram platform. Facebook supports both square and horizontal video, though horizontal is used most often by video publishers and markters.
Creating video in the square format allows marketers to seamlessly use the same content across both Facebook and Instagram. With all the different platforms and formats, marketers will either have to first choose a platform where video will be deployed, or potentially create as many as three different versions of the video to run in the different formats.
Working with agency VML, fast food chain Wendy’s recently ran video campaign that went with a 1:1 ratio on Facebook. "We shot it in two different formats: Your average 16:9 so that you can use it on YouTube, and we also shot in a square or box format because that's in line with Facebook's best practices," Daniel Lobaton, VML's creative director, told Ad Week about the campaign.
Facebook’s own recommendations for video on mobile include: grab viewers’ attention quickly, design the video to play without sound, experiment and test what works, and produce video that meets the challenge of the small screen. A BBDO-produced campaign that opted for the 1:1 ratio in order to increase visibility led to 2x impressions and a three point increase in ad recall, according to Facebook.