Tips, tricks and recommendations for social media video specs in 2021

 Video is without shadow of doubt on the rise in the social media scene and brands are trying to keep up with the latest trends so they can retain and gain more audiences.

Video is by far the most popular way customers want to learn about new products, and for 70% of B2B marketers, content creation is the top investment for 2021. According to Kite’s recent research, 70% of consumers say that they have shared a brand’s video, 72% of businesses confirm that video has improved their conversion rate, 52% of consumers say that watching product videos makes them more confident in online purchase decisions. For more details on this subject, please check out our Purple Paper on Digital Marketing Essentials for 2021.

Video is king this year, boosted even more by the global pandemic context and the international increase of mobile devices usage. Thus, brands have to be ready with entertaining, high-quality, helpful, well-edited, easy-to-understand, and preferably short video content on social media platforms.

Here are the video specs brands need to consider in 2021 to achieve high video social media performances.

Facebook Video Specs

Facebook is currently the biggest social networking service with roughly 2.8 billion monthly active users, highly dedicated to ensuring maximum video accessibility on as many formats as possible, both on mobile and desktop devices. Keeping up with their video specs is more dazzling than Keeping up with the Kardashians, but here is our take on their latest video requirements.

Regular Facebook Feed Video:

Recommended size: 1280 by 720 pixels

Minimum width: 600 pixels

Supported aspect ratios: 16:9 (horizontal), 9:16 (full portrait), 2:3 (vertical), 4:5 (vertical), square (1:1)

Recommended specs: Videos should also utilize H.264 compression, square pixels, fixed frame rate, progressive scan, and stereo AAC audio compression at 128kbps+. Your videos can be as long as 240 minutes, as large as 4GB large, and have a maximum frame rate of 30fps.

Tip: To get the best quality for your video posts, Facebook recommends uploading videos in .MOV and .MP4format, however, most video file types are supports.

Facebook 360 Video

360 videos are a stunning and captivating way for publishers and content creators to share immersive stories, places and experiences with their audiences.

Maximum size: 4096 by 2048 pixels, 2:1 aspect ratio

Minimum size: 600 pixels wide

Recommended specs: .MP4 format, maximum file size 1.75GB, maximum length 40 min, maximum frame rate 60fps.

Trick: 360 can be included with your video if the camera used to record your video automatically includes the metadata. If not, when uploading your video, head over to the ‘Advanced’ tab, then use Facebook’s ‘360 controls’ tab to convert unformatted footage into a 360 video.

Facebook In-Stream Video Ads

Recommended size: 1280 by 720 pixels

Minimum size, landscape video: 600 by 315 pixels (1.9:1 aspect ratio)

Minimum size, square video: 600 by 600 pixels (1:1 aspect ratio)

Recommended specs: .MP4 or .MOV format, maximum file size 4GB, maximum length 120 min, maximum frame rate 30fps.

Tip: When using in-stream ads, Facebook recommends uploading the highest resolution source video available – without letter or pillar boxing. In-stream ads are 5-15 seconds long, therefore, ensure that you produce content that’s strong, engaging to get your audiences’ attention.

Facebook Messenger Stories Ads

Recommended size: 1280 by 720 pixels

Supported aspect ratios: 16:9 to 1.91:1

Recommended specs: videos can be up to 240 minutes long with a maximum size of 4GB, and have a maximum frame rate of 30fps.

Trick: For quality video ads, Facebook recommends uploading your highest resolution video available (that meets file size and ratio limits) – without letter or pillar boxing.

Facebook Carousel Video Ads

Recommended size: 1080 by 1080 pixels (1:1 aspect ratio)

Minimum size, landscape video: 600 by 315 pixels (1.9:1 aspect ratio)

Minimum size, square video: 600 by 600 pixels (1:1 aspect ratio)

Recommended specs: You can use .MP4 or .MOV formats.

Videos cannot exceed 240 minutes in length, the maximum frame rate allowable is 30fps, and maximum file size is 4GB.

TipCarousels are handy when creating episodic content. They allow you to use up to 10 images or videos in one ad, making it easier for your audience to get the message without having to click to visit a new page. For best results, use a 1080 by 1080-pixel square (1:1) video.

Facebook Collection Cover Video

Recommended size: 1200 by 628 pixels

Minimum size, landscape video: 600 by 315 pixels (1.9:1 aspect ratio)

Minimum size, square video: 600 by 600 pixels (1:1 aspect ratio)

Recommended specs: .MP4 or .MOV format, maximum file size 4GB, maximum length 120 min, maximum frame rate 30fps.

Trick: Collections are a new ad type designed for mobile users. It helps them discover, browse and buy products and services from their phones in what Facebook calls an ‘immersive’ way.

Facebook Experience Video (Formally Canvas)

Recommended size: 1200 by 628 pixels

Minimum size, landscape video: 600 by 315 pixels (1.9:1 aspect ratio)

Minimum size, square video: 600 by 600 pixels (1:1 aspect ratio)

Recommended specs: .MP4 or .MOV format, maximum file size 4GB, maximum length 120 min, maximum frame rate 30fps.

Tip: Facebook Experience Ads transform into a full-screen experience. To drive engagement, you can add buttons and include carousels, photos, and text along with your video. Ensure that your videos are captivating and include clear calls to action to generate positive results.

Facebook Slideshow Video Ads

Recommended size: 1200 by 720 pixels

Recommended specs: .MP4 or .MOV format, maximum file size 4GB, maximum length 120 min, maximum frame rate 30fps.

TrickSlideshows are designed to accommodate users with slow internet access. To do this, slideshow ads allow you to use a collection of 3-10 images, along with a sound file (supported formats: WAV, MP3, M4A, FLAC and OGG) and turn them into a video ad.

Recommendation: While internet speed is a factor, for the best possible user experience, Facebook recommends using the highest quality images possible. Your images must share the same dimensions (Facebook recommends 1280 x 720 pixels or an image ratio of 16:9, 1:1 or 2:3). Using different size images will result in your slideshow being cropped, leading to elements or subject matter in the images being removed.

Instagram Video Specs

Instagram has over 1 billion active users engaged in posting both photo and video content. The platform supports square, vertical and horizontal video. Here are the specs you need to know and follow on your business brand accounts.

Instagram in-feed video and video ads

Square video: 600 by 600 pixels (1:1 aspect ratio)

Horizontal video: 600 by 315 pixels (1.9:1 aspect ratio)

Vertical video: 600 by 750 pixels (4:5 aspect ratio)

Recommended specs: .MP4 or .MOV format.

The maximum file size is 4GB, maximum length 60 seconds, maximum frame rate 30fps.Your video should not exceed 4GB in size, must be within ratio limits, have H.264 compression, square pixels, fixed frame rate, progressive scan, and stereo AAC audio compression at 128kbps+.

Tip: Like Facebook, Instagram’s recommendations are similar and you’re urged to use the highest video resolution possible.

Instagram Carousel Video Ads

Recommended size: 1080 by 1080 pixels

Minimum size: 600 by 600 pixels

Recommended specs: .MP4 or .MOV format, maximum length 60 seconds, maximum frame rate 30fps.

Trick: Similar to Facebook carousels, Instagram allows you to show anything from 2 to 10 images or videos in one side-scrolling ad. This allows marketers to get creative with different media formats and boost engagement.

Instagram Stories Video Ads

Recommended size: 1080 by 1920 pixels

Minimum size: 600 by 1067 pixels

Supported aspect ratios: 16:9 to 4:5 and 9:16

Recommended specs: .MP4 or .MOV format, maximum length 15 seconds, maximum file size 4GB.

Tip: Instagram story videos are short videos, up to 15 seconds long, that appear between stories from profiles users follow. As with Facebook recommendations, it’s a good idea to use the highest resolution video possible.

Twitter Video Specs

With 330 million monthly active users and 145 million daily active users, Twitter is naturally optimized for mobile device-captured video and can be a great tool for brands looking for a high-professional tone and, especially interesting for brands in the US, or looking to market in the US, as the highest number of users are from the American continents.

Twitter horizontal videos

Recommended size: 1280 by 1024 pixels

Minimum size: 32 by 32 pixels

Maximum size: 1920 by 1200 pixels

Supported aspect ratios: between 1:2.39 – 2.39:1

Recommended sizes:

  • At 256K bitrate: 320 by 180 pixels
  • At 768K bitrate: 640 by 360 pixels
  • At 2048K bitrate: 1280 by 720 pixels

Recommended specs: use .MP4 for web, .MOV format for mobile, video cannot exceed 140 seconds in length, however, we have seen longer videos as shown above.

Tip: The maximum file size is 512MB with maximum frame rate 40fps. Videos must use progressive scan, have 1:1 pixel ratio, audio should be mono or stereo and not 5.1 or greater.

Twitter Vertical Videos

Recommended size: 1200 by 1900 pixels

Minimum size: 32 by 32 pixels

Recommended size at 256K bitrate: 240 by 240 pixels

Recommended size at 768K bitrate: 480 by 480 pixels

Recommended size at 2048K bitrate: 640 by 640 pixels

Recommended specs: use .MP4 for web, .MOV format for mobile, video cannot exceed 140 seconds in length, however, we have seen longer videos as shown above.

The maximum file size is 512MB with maximum frame rate 40fps. Videos must use progressive scan, have 1:1 pixel ratio, audio should be mono or stereo and not 5.1 or greater.

Snapchat Video Specs

Snapchat is one of the applications with a solid growth that continues its ascension especially due to its main audience made up by Millennials and Gen Z. According to last year’s data, as June 2020, an average of 238 million people was using Snapchat each day, creating an average of 4 billion snaps per day, which should be of massive interest for marketers and brands everywhere.

Snapchat 10-second video ads:

Recommended size: 1080 by 1920 pixels (9:16 aspect ratio)

Recommended specs: .MP4 or MOV, H.264 encoded, between 3 and 10 seconds long, maximum file size 32MB

Audio specs: 2 channels, PCM or AAC codec, 192 minimum kbps, 16 or 24 bit only, 48 KHz sample rate

Tip: Snapchat videos can be used to drive traffic to other assets, such as, long-form videos and articles, and landing pages.

Recommendation: As you create your video, as with Instagram, leave a little room at the top and bottom of your video. Around 15% will do and it will prevent important content from being cropped automatically due to smaller user device screen sizes.

Snapchat Long-Form Video Ads

Recommended size: 1080 by 1920 pixels

Supported aspect ratios: 9:16 or 16:9

Recommended specs: .MP4 or MOV, minimum 15 seconds long (no maximum length), maximum file size 1GB

Audio specs: 2 channels, PCM or AAC codec, 192 minimum kbps, 16 or 24 bit only, 48 KHz sample rate

Trick: Longform videos must contain “live and/or motion graphic video” (no “silent or still videos”). Although horizontal videos are allowed, Snapchat recommends vertical videos.

Recommendation: Snapchat video ads also come with 16 restrictions covering everything from the use of letterboxing and one line call to action text, to promotion and Snapcodes. Be sure to review all 16 restrictions before planning your video content.

Snapchat Sponsored Geofilter

Snapchat geofilters are special overlays that can only be accessed in certain locations.

Recommended size: 1080 by 1920 pixels

Overlay format: .PNG with transparent background, maximum 250kb.

YouTube Video Specs

YouTube has 2 billion monthly logged-in users, closely following Facebook in popularity and usage, moreover people watch over a billion hours of video and generate billions of views world-wide.

YouTube Video Player Specs

Recommended sizes:

  • 426 by 240 pixels (240p)
  • 640 by 360 pixels (360p
  • 854 by 480 pixels (480p)
  • 1280 by 720 pixels (720p)
  • 1920 by 1080 pixels (1080p)
  • 2560 by 1440 pixels (1440p)
  • 3840 by 2160 pixels (2160p)

Minimum size: 426 by 240 pixels

Maximum size: 3840 by 2160 pixels

Supported aspect ratios: 16:9 and 4:3

Recommended specs: .MOV, .MPEG4, MP4, .AVI, .WMV, .MPEGPS, .FLV, 3GPP, or WebM, maximum file size 128GB, maximum 12 hours long.

RecommendationAs the second largest search engine in the world, YouTube reaches an audience with varying internet connectivity speeds. To ensure that you video can be enjoyed by as many people, YouTube recommends that videos be uploaded using the highest possible resolution. Use native aspect ratios, and letterboxing or pillarboxing bars are a no-no as YouTube automatically frames videos to display them optimally in their video player.

YouTube Video Ads

Skippable video ads: maximum length of 12 hours, skippable after 5 seconds

Unskippable video ads: max length of 15, 20 or 30 seconds

Mid-roll video ads: minimum length of 30 seconds

Bumper video ads: maximum length of 6 seconds

TipAim to make your ads as compelling as possible by using call to action text and interactive elements.

LinkedIn Video Specs

With nearly 740 million members in more than 200 countries, LinkedIn is known as the biggest professional network in the world, a digital space where both businesses and people interact, being a tool where companies can display their activities and strengths, a hub for job searching and for finding great employees and employers, but also a hook that can boost brand awareness and especially credibility.

LinkedIn Shared Videos

Maximum size: 4,096 by 2,304 pixels

Minimum size: 256 by 144 pixels

Supported aspect ratios: 1:2:4 to 2:4:1

Recommended specs: .ASF, .AVI, .FLV, .MOV, .MPEG-1, .MPEG-4, .MKV, and .WebM, maximum file size 5GB, maximum 10 minutes long, maximum frame rate 60fps

LinkedIn Video Ads

Maximum size: 1080p (1440 x 1080; wide 1920 x 1080)

Minimum size: 360p (480 x 360; wide 640 x 360)

Audio format: AAC or MPEG4

Audio size: Less than 64KHz

Aspect ratios: Video ads created with a 1:1 aspect ratio should have a minimum resolution of 600 x 600px, and a maximum resolution of 1080 x 1080px.

Recommended specs: .MP4, File size between 75 KB and 200 MB, maximum 30 minutes long, maximum frame rate 30fps

Tip: LinkedIn recommends keeping your video ads to 15 seconds or less in length based on stats they’ve collected over time. It is, however, possible to use longer video ads if your social media marketing strategy includes running a native ad series, or have created a collection of ads as part of an episodic content campaign.

LinkedIn has a set of specifications for sponsored content.

Pinterest Video Ads

With more than 442 million people browsing on Pinterest every month, hungry for ideas and ready to take action, brands have a new opportunity to showcase their content and build a deeper connection with their Pinterest following via great video context.

Minimum size: 240p

Recommended size:

  • Square videos: 600 by 600 pixels (1:1 aspect ratio)
  • Vertical videos: 600 by 900 pixels (9:16 aspect ratio)

Recommended specs: .MP4 or .MOV, maximum file size 2GB, maximum length 30 minutes, maximum frame rate 25fps

Tip: By nature, Pinterest is all about pins and boards. A smart way to showcase all of your ads in one place is to create a board. This works particularly well for content such as how-to videos or promotions you plan to run for an extended period of time.

Tik-Tok video specs

With numbers and projections showing that Tik-Tok will reach a whopping 1.2 billion users in 2021, brands that use the app for marketing purposes will have a strong advantage over those how don’t.

TikTok Video Best Practices

  • Video File Size: up to 287.6 MB (iOS) and 72 MB (Android) in size
  • Video Length Max: 15 seconds
  • Can also combine story videos together for up to 60 seconds of video
  • Video Captions: Available
  • Video Sound: Recommended

TikTok Video Dimensions

  • Vertical video is preferred, but horizontal is permitted
  • Asset dimensions: 1080 x 1920 (video must use the entire canvas)
  • 150px margin on top and bottom, 64px margin on each side.
  • Resolution: 9:16 aspect ratio.
  • File type: .mp4 or .mov file.
  • Video code: H.264 encoded.

TikTok ads are quite costly and brands need to optimize them according to the platform and the targeted audience, so one must know exactly how to shape them and where to place them for maximum results. The most relevant ad placement options in TikTok are:

  • In-feed
  • News Feed series

Ad Specs for In-Feed Ads

Specs for the ad video: 

  • The recommended aspect ratio is 9:16, 1:1, or 16:9.
  • Resolution options include 720 x 1280 px,  640 x 640 px, and 1280 x 720 px.
  • You can use MP4, MPEG, MOV, or AVI files in your ads.
  • Video duration should be between 5 and 16 seconds.
  • The video file size should be less than 500 MB.

Specs for the ad display image: 

  • The prescribed aspect ratio is 1:1.
  • File size is less than 50 KB.
  • File type should be PNG, JPEG, or JPG.

Ad Specs for News Feed Series

Specs for the ad video: 

  • The recommended aspect ratio is 16:9 or 1:1.
  • File types are the same as in-feed ads.
  • No restriction on video resolution though it’s best to keep it above 720×1280 px.
  • You can use short-form videos of any duration, but keep it in the 5-60 seconds range.
  • The file size should be less than 500 MB.

With the right video content, it is proven that brands get a better conversion rate, create more awareness, increase credibility and at the end of the day, enjoy a higher ROI. If you are interested in doing just that, Kite is here and ready to take you on the best video ride your brand definitely needs! Get in touch with our team.