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Intro to Vertical Video on Social Media: Instagram, TikTok, Snapchat, and Twitter

Once upon a time, video in portrait mode (without the obligatory horizontal shift) was considered, well, a sin. Oh, how times have changed! Isn't it quite funny that a moving picture setup that used to irk us so much a mere decade ago would become a content staple for a vast majority of people today? Let's meditate on it a bit...

March 29, 2022

Once upon a time, video in portrait mode (without the obligatory horizontal shift) was considered, well, a sin. Oh, how times have changed! Isn't it quite funny that a moving picture setup that used to irk us so much a mere decade ago would become a content staple for a vast majority of people today? Let's meditate on it a bit...

We all hold our phones vertically almost all the time, right? Come to think of it, how often do we put it in a horizontal position? Well, if we're to be honest - unless it's something super important, the phone won't see its horizontal position, for sure.

The Correct Way to Do Vertical Videos!

The world of social media and internet marketing changes constantly. As technology keeps evolving, so do the ways we use it. Almost all media platforms support vertical video nowadays, and you can see countless examples of it all around the interwebs.

Once condemned formats are, today, the most sought after kind of content on social platforms and no matter if you're using Facebook, YouTube, LinkedIn or any other platform, that's how it is.

What you have to keep in mind is the fact that not all portrait videos were created the same. Not all of them keep the target audience engaged and hungry for more. Whether you're considering using short web stories or you'd rather produce a long-form video or stream, you have to know how to go about it.  If you want to be successful, there are a few things that you should keep in mind before "verticalizing" on Instagram, TikTok, Snapchat, and Twitter. This storified article will break them one by one, platform by platform. Enjoy!

Verticalising Instagram

What better way to start this breakdown than with Instagram! Insta lives and insta stories are the main reasons behind the reason portrait videos got so popular. As you're undoubtedly aware most of Insta web stories, streams, and feeds- they tend to be vertical in nature (surprise, surprise), and they won't "lie down" any time soon. On that note, advertisers have concluded that the completion rate rises to 75% if they implement vertical strategies, so this whole trend works out for them too.

When you're posting a video on your feed, use all this platform has to give. Try posting little snippets of that in your stories (no longer than 15 seconds)  as little teasers beforehand, utilize options like polls and questionnaires, and make the thumbnail cut. It's worth noting that most of the vertical videos are watched on mute, with no sound on, so when producing your content, you should be very much aware of that fact. Implement captions, use expressive faces and our text as a vital part of your video, not just your thumbnail.

Use everything at your disposal to make an impactful CTA whether that is "following the link in the bio "or reaching your storified landing page in one way or another.

Verticalising Snapchat and TikTok

Well, maybe the verticalization of Snapchat and TikTok is a somewhat a wrong way to go about it since both of these platforms were "born and raised" vertically. There are significant differences between these two, however:

TikTok is the new kid on the block when it comes to platforms, and naturally, all the kids use it frequently. But that's not all: TikTok is extremely useful if you want to tap into Asian markets because it's a virally popular app there for all the age-groups.

Snapchat is the vertical video cradle, the app started this all and made everything vertical possible. It propelled it to its global acceptance and then popularity.

So what is crucial when it comes to these two vertical veterans?

For starters, you *have* to make your videos good, entertaining inside and out and attention-grabbing from the get-go. If you opt to do your product storytelling through Snapchat or TikTok, you have to be prepared to give it all you've got. Your web story has to pull the audience in, to dazzle them, keep their attention and to be straight to the point with your message loud and clear, even while your video is on silent. These are the fast-paced platforms of young ones that don't have the time, patience or interest to wait for the punchline. The quick, direct approach is the key!

Verticalising Twitter

All of the above holds true for the Twitterverse too. Although it's primarily a "wordy" platform, the seductiveness of video format didn't bypass it. If you take into account that videos get more retweets than pictures while keeping in mind that pictures get more action than text-only tweets… It's easy to see why would you include your storified ad in a video vertical form even on Twitter. However:

  • Keep the most important things to your story front and center during the video, without losing anything important
  • While doing that, avoid too much movement, no jumping left and right, it's distracting and not very helpful
  • Although movement left-right isn't advised, getting close and personal is. Don't be afraid to zoom in
  • Even though it's a video, don't be text-shy. Text, captions, and graphics can help you fill-up space in the vertical frame and keep everybody interested at all times
  • Be creative, unique and work on creating  an easily recognizable video style


In this day and age, when your audience has so many choices of entertainment, it's crucial to make sure they are not scrolling away. Although portrait videos were resented in the past, over time they have grown on people, and nowadays they are your best bet on keeping their eyes on you and your brand. So waste no time and embrace the vertical as all of the modern social media platforms did!  Find new and exciting ways to embrace this trend, because it's not always about what you tell, but how you tell it.

If you want to get the likes, shares, and comments on any platform, you have to make your content engaging, and one of the best ways of doing so is to give the vertical video a shot. You don't have to spend a ridiculous amount of money, you just have to be creative and see where the vertical adventure leads you, with the Storifyme team leading the way!

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