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5 Short Form Ideas & Why You Should Try Them: 101 Guide

Out of ideas for your short-form content? Discover 5 compelling short-form ideas to grow your reach effortlessly.
Kendall Breitman
Social Media & Community Expert
Last Updated:
March 5, 2024
Reviewed by
Ortal Hadad

In today's digital age, where attention spans are shorter than ever, short-form videos have become a popular and effective way to engage with audiences. 

Short-form videos have revolutionized how we consume content.  They provide exciting opportunities for businesses and creators to reach new heights in marketing.

In this guide, we explore how to create compelling short-form videos. Whether you're a content creator, a marketer, or just want to give it a go, here’s everything you should know.  

What is a short-form video?

Short-form videos are just as the name suggests. These clips tend to be less than a minute long and grab the viewer’s attention quickly. They generally include bite-size snippets of value for viewers to consume and digest quickly. 

This type of content is popular on social media. Platforms like TikTok and Instagram Reels feature short-form videos as their main content. People can scroll from one video to the next by scrolling upward. This type of content is a smart option if you want to engage your audience fast.

Pros and cons of short-form video

Before you start on short-form videos, you will want to know the pros and cons of this format. We’ve got you covered. Here’s a breakdown of the advantages and disadvantages. 


Quick and engaging

Short-form videos are typically limited to a few seconds, making them easily consumable and engaging for viewers. They cater to shorter attention spans and allow creators to deliver their message succinctly.

Creativity and experimentation

Short-form videos encourage creativity and experimentation. Creators can explore various formats, editing styles, and visual effects to make content more appealing. 

Viral potential

Short-form videos have a higher chance of going viral than longer videos. Their bite-sized nature makes them shareable, increasing their reach and potential for exposure. In fact, short-form videos are 2.5 more engaging than other types of video content. 

Accessibility and convenience

With the rise of smartphones and improved internet speeds, short-form videos have become more accessible than ever. They can be quickly consumed on mobile devices, making them convenient for users to watch.

Ideal for Social Media

Short-form videos are ideal for social media, where users scroll through content quickly. What’s more, these videos are quick to make. You can produce a wealth of short-form content quickly. If you are hoping to capture users’ imagination, that’s a great tool.


Limited depth

Short-form videos often lack in-depth coverage or detailed explanations due to their duration. Complex topics may be oversimplified or not adequately addressed, leading to a shallow understanding of the subject.

Short-lived engagement

While short-form videos can be highly engaging, the attention is often fleeting. Viewers quickly scroll through a feed, consuming numerous videos simultaneously, making it challenging for you to maintain long-term viewer loyalty or build a dedicated audience.

Potential for superficiality

The brevity of short-form videos can result in a focus on superficial aspects like appearance, filters, and trends. Content creators may prioritize catchy visuals over substance, which could lead to a decline in quality or meaningful content.

Limited storytelling opportunities

Some narratives need more time to develop and unfold. However, short-form videos may not capture complex reports or provide a comprehensive storytelling experience, limiting their use in specific contexts.

Why should you include short-form videos in your content strategy?

There are many benefits of integrating short-form video content into your strategy. Before you start planning this content segment, let’s take a look at some of the reasons to do so:

1. Increased engagement 

Short-form videos are highly engaging and shareable. 66% of consumers prefer to watch short-form videos to learn about a product or service. So, by including them in your content strategy, you can capture your audience's attention more effectively. You can also quickly inform them about your products or services.

2. Wide reach and exposure 

Short-form videos have the potential to go viral and reach a large audience. Platforms like TikTok and Instagram Reels have more than a billion active users each, providing an opportunity to increase your brand's visibility and expand your reach. Leveraging the viral potential of short-form videos helps you to attract new followers, customers, or supporters.

3. Improved brand storytelling 

According to a survey by Influencer Marketing Hub, 85% of marketers believe that using videos to attract online users' attention is a practical approach. 

Videos are crucial for both marketing and building a strong brand because it has been found that viewers recall 95% of the information from them. That means that condensing your message into a concise and visually appealing video will help you to effectively communicate your brand story, values, or critical statements. 

5 short-form video ideas to try to grow your reach 

Ready to press “record” and get moving? Before you shout “action,” you need some short-form video ideas. If you’re not sure where to start, here are some you can try:

1. Product demos and tutorials 

Create short videos showcasing your products or services in action. Highlight their key features and demonstrate how they meet customer needs. Keep your tutorial videos concise and engaging, giving viewers a clear understanding of what your products can do and why they should consider purchasing them.

2. Behind-the-scenes glimpses 

Short-form videos that provide a glimpse into the behind-the-scenes workings of your business. This move helps to humanize your brand, foster a sense of authenticity, and connect with your audience on a personal level. Whether you are a business owner or a content creator, why not show your audience what your average workday looks like?

3. Reviews and testimonials

People love to read reviews online — but they also watch them. A short-form video is the perfect outlet if you want to share your experiences of a restaurant, hotel, movie, or album. You can show pictures or clips from what you are reviewing and give your opinion. Pick a niche that your audience will come to know you for and keep reviewing within it.

If you have a business account, you may also want to share reviews and testimonials from third parties. Having your customers record a brief review of your products or services builds trust in your brand. Don’t miss out on this opportunity. 

4. Industry tips and insights 

Share bite-sized tips, tricks, and industry insights relevant to your target audience. Focus on addressing common pain points or offering practical advice that viewers can immediately apply. These short videos position you as an expert in your field, provide valuable information and establish your business as a go-to resource.

5. User-generated content challenges

User-generated content challenges increase engagement and expand your reach as viewers share their videos with their networks. You can encourage your audience to participate in a short-form video challenge related to your brand or industry. For example, ask them to showcase their creativity by using your product or share personal success stories related to your services. 

Best Platforms for Short-Form Video Content

If you want to create and share this content, you need to find the right short-form video platform. Should you be new to this short-form video marketing, you’ve come to the right place. Let’s take a look at some of the best platforms you can use for both creating this type of content and also sharing it.


Riverside short-form video platform

We will kick things off with the best platform for short-form video editing: Riverside. The easy-to-use platform allows you to create your own virtual studio to record 4K resolution content. Whatever your skill level, Riverside is straightforward. There’s a built-in editor feature that means you can do everything all in one place. 

If you’re new to the world of video editing, the text-based editor is the way to go. The tool allows you to edit the content as you would a Word document. Riverside creates a transcript of the video using AI technology. Delete and edit parts to edit the video too. And to end off, you can burn these transcripts into your video as open captions.

To make your production even easier, you can repurpose one long-form recording into multiple short, shareable content in just one click. Our AI clip maker repurposes your recordings’ key moments into short-form videos ideal for social media. 

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When you’ve created some epic short-form videos, it’s time to share them. TikTok has emerged as one of the most popular platforms for short-form video content due to its massive user base with millions of active users worldwide. The platform's algorithm also enables content to go viral, allowing creators to gain significant visibility and reach a broad audience. You can create content at the click of a button, and the platform has a range of fun features. For example, you might want to use a filter, play a game, or add an effect.

Instagram Reels

Instagram Reels is seamlessly part of the Instagram app, which already has a massive user base of over 1 billion monthly active users. Luckily, the Reels are also discoverable on the explore page, so people who don’t follow you can find them there.

YouTube Shorts

YouTube Shorts is YouTube's response to the growing popularity of short-form video marketing. It provides content creators with a dedicated space to create and share vertical videos that are 60 seconds or less in length. You can share your short videos to other social media platforms from this app or site and reach a wider audience.

Tips for creating successful short-form videos

Creating short-form videos is one thing, but how can you ensure they are successful? If you want to make your short clips super engaging, follow these tips:

Plan your video first 

Hitting “Record” before you’ve planned out your video is a mistake. If you want to engage your audience, your short-form video must have a strong narrative. Take the time to plan out what you will say or do during the video before you get started. 

Hook the viewer instantly

The first few seconds of your short-form video are crucial. You need to grab the viewer’s attention so they don’t scroll past your video. What is your “hook”? For example, you may tease your audience and tell them you have an insider tip to share. 

Don’t waste any time 

There’s no time to spare. When creating short-form video content, you must stick to a time limit. Edit out any unnecessary pauses or dull moments. To succeed, the content must be short, snappy, and pack a whole load of value. 

Add some extra features

Whether it’s background music, a greenscreen, or effects, adding extra features can make your short-form video stand out. When dealing with your short-form video editing, consider ways to get and keep the viewer’s attention. 

Show off your personality 

Often enough, the success of a short-form video rides on your personality. If you are speaking directly to the camera, your persona can make or break the video. You won't captivate the audience if you sound bored with your own content. 

Bonus: How to create short-form videos seamlessly with Riverside

Using Riverside is a savvy move if you want to create amazing short-form videos. If you’re new to the platform, we have you covered. Here’s what you need to do to create clips: 

Step 1: Get started on Riverside

Join Riverside first. There are a range of plans to suit every budget. Open the program and create your own virtual studio by clicking “+ Create New”. You will then see a box pop up in which you can name your studio. When you’ve done that, press “Enter Studio.”

Step 2: Record your content

Before you enter the recording studio, you’ll see yourself in the lobby. You can check out your equipment here. When you’re ready, select “Join Studio”. 

In the studio, you can invite guests if you haven’t already. Press the “Record” button to get started when you're all set. 

If you’d like you can user the ‘Marker’ to mark specific parts of your recordings to create automated clips of your own. With Magic Clips, this isn’t necessary. This is just if you wish to clip a specific moment.

Once you finish recording, click “Stop” and when your files finish uploading, select “view recordings”.

Step 3: Create and edit your Magic Clips

On the next screen, you’ll see all your recording takes. Click on the take you’d like to create clips from. Scroll till you see the Magic Clips box, and select “Generate Clips”

Just like that, we’ll generate clips of your key moments. Hover over your clips and click “Edit” if you’d like to adjust any of them in the Editor. In the Editor, you can adjust your clip length, add captions, style your layout, and more.

Step 4: Download and share online 

When you are happy with your short-form videos, the final step is to download them in a format that suits you. The platform will save the clips on the device you are using. (Hint: It is usually in your Downloads folder.) You can then upload the short-form videos to any social media platform, including TikTok, Instagram Reels, and YouTube Shorts.

FAQs on Short-Form Videos

Why do people like short-form video?

Short-form videos deliver value and entertainment quickly. Millennials have an attention span of just 12 seconds, while Gen Z’s attention span is even lower at eight seconds. For that reason, these generations prefer short-form videos as they can focus on them.

What is long-form vs short-form video?

Long-form videos are usually 10 minutes or longer. However, short-form videos tend to be under a minute in length. 

The two video types serve different purposes. A long-form video may be a docu-series on YouTube, while a short-form video could be a TikTok.

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