5 tips to make better reels, shorts or tiktoks

John McTavish
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In case you’re not convinced that creating short clips is worth your time, here are the stats: • Reels on Instagram get the most reach out of any type of content posted there at +33%. • Demand for YouTube Shorts is growing at ~33% YoY but shorts published only rose ~10%. • TikTok still leads in short-form video views at 23 hours and 28 min per month (but YouTube is just a few minutes behind) The tips: 1. Publish fast and stay trendy People double click on trending topics or events. But there are more benefits than just an algorithmic boost here — especially if you’re new to creating short clips. Every video is a practice rep. You’ll learn how to make short videos faster, learn how to use the features in each platform more effectively and simply get more feedback on what styles resonate as you go. 2. Start them hot The first few seconds are what keeps folks watching, so focus your content and editing efforts on refining that. Not that the rest isn’t important — all the algorithms take video watch duration into account. But the start has to sizzle. Do anything to make watchers curious enough to find out what’s going to happen in the rest of the clip. 3. Tell your viewers what to do This is something I’ve always struggled with, but people want direct directions. • Click here, • do this, • watch what happens next, • leave a comment with … Somehow we love to get told what to do. 4. Show the whole story People love normal existence captured in abnormal ways. Behind the scenes reels, realistic daily routines, how I do X — you’re the expert on your life, so let folks in! Use snappy transitions and imported elements (gifs, memes, music snippets) to transform the everyday to something captivating. 5. Follow your own path Look, maybe you started off with weird foot-fetish reels, gained thousands of followers and now feel stuck in a metaphysical shoe box. Then one day you wake up with no more passion for those toes. Don’t force yourself to stay in this niche. If you’ve followed tips 1 and 4, your audience will appreciate a shift in subject matter — you’ll probably gain more as you share the journey of learning something new or chasing a new goal. ~~~ What did I miss?
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