Thousands of potential customers browse Instagram Reels, Tiktok and other video platforms every day, eager to get a behind-the-scenes look at a favorite hairdresser, home entrepreneur, or chef. Hubspot reports that people have nearly doubled their online video consumption in just four years. To reach customers where they are flowing, small business owners need to join the trend.
Anne Faire, Yelp’s San Diego community manager, has made over one hundred reels on Instagram, with a view count of nearly three million. As a self-taught content creator, she has discovered key methods for satisfying Instagram’s algorithm, engaging followers, and growing an evergreen content library.
Below, Anne shares four tips for entrepreneurs to improve social media video performance.
You don’t need to have expensive equipment to be successful on social media. Anne recommends the following tools for creating video content:
- A basic tripod that can wrap around objects
- A small lightbox to integrate when shooting in low light conditions
- Video editing apps like InShot (free) and Mojo ($ 9.99 / month)
- A planning tool like Later or Plan to organize your posts
2. Aim for consistency, not perfection
As an entrepreneur, you may not have the extra time or energy for creating content. It might be tempting to post intermittently, when you find that gem of an Instagram reel. But according to Anne, the algorithm prioritizes consistency over perfection.
This means that a bad video won’t hurt your engagement. Instead, treat each post as a quick snack for the consumer. “[Videos are] just digital popcorn, “he said.” If you’re scrolling and eating a bag of popcorn, and it’s been a little burnt … you’re not going to throw the whole bowl away and say, ‘I’ll never eat popcorn again. ‘”
Meta, the umbrella company of Facebook and Instagram, reports that the average attention span for content on its platforms is just 1.7 seconds on a mobile device. As you create your content strategy, take the pressure off by reminding yourself that viewers aren’t reviewing your videos.
Pro tip: Anne recommends keeping your videos for 15 seconds or less.
3. Be satisfied with what you are already doing
Publishing consistently takes a lot of takes, but you don’t have to go out of your way to set up your takes. Entrepreneurs already have a wealth of content at their fingertips. “You have more content than you think, especially as an entrepreneur on Yelp, “said Anne.” You can see what content people want to have and create content around it. “
Some of the best opportunities for social media lie in what entrepreneurs see and do every day: behind-the-scenes footage of a chef at work, a 15-second clip introducing a new product, a before and after haircut or a kitchen remodel – the possibilities are endless.
Anne recommends looking at your Yelp reviews to identify things customers love most about your business, like a popular dish or service, and highlight them in your videos. To stay organized, he suggests keeping the video photos you or your staff take in a shared folder or “content library”. That way, you always have access to evergreen content, even if you decide to outsource your social media.
4. Don’t stress the involvement
Engaging with your followers is a great way to boost your performance, but there’s no need to reinvent the wheel. Instead of trying to find the perfect combination of hashtags, keep it simple: reply to your followers in the comments or encourage viewers to tag a friend by offering discounts or freebies.
And most importantly, make sure you prioritize work-life balance. Checking notifications and responding to customers can be helpful, but it’s okay, and say hello, to check out at the end of the day.
“If you’re a company with opening hours, I’d probably be a little more up to date with things during [business] hours, ”Anne said. “But after hours, it’s after hours … nothing will be an emergency.”
Editorial by Emily Moon and Jenna Spray
These lessons come from an episode of Behind the review, Weekly Podcast from Yelp & Entrepreneur Media. Listen below to hear Elizabeth or visit the episode page to find out more, subscribe to the show and explore more episodes.
The above information is provided for educational and informational purposes only. It is not intended to replace professional advice and may not be suitable for your circumstances. Unless otherwise noted, references to third-party links, services, or products do not constitute endorsement by Yelp.