The Vertical Video Trend: Pros & Cons

 In Video

Vertical videos have become all the rage for marketers as consumers have shifted their video-viewing habits from their computers and TVs to their vertical-screened smartphones. Today, nearly 57% of all world-wide video plays come from mobile devices, and most users hold their phones vertical roughly 94% of the time.

Even so, vertical may sound great, but it does come with some disadvantages. For all the amazing potential it has for your company, vertical isn’t always the answer. To know if it’s right for you, explore these pros and cons of vertical video and decide for yourself:

  • Pro – Vertical makes it easier to post across all mobile channels: One of the biggest advantages of vertical videos is that they’re made for mobile by design. This means you can quickly post to multiple channels with a single video and no need for complicated editing or tweaking.
  • Con – It goes against natural eyesight: One common complaint about vertical formats is that they operate counter to how our vision works. We perceive the world in “portrait mode”, which can throw off viewers and create negative associations with a video.
  • Pro – It’s easier to record on and for mobile: with the vast improvements made in mobile photography (our phones take better video and photos than ever), using your phone for marketing purposes isn’t unheard of. Vertical orientation makes it easier for you to go from idea to finished product without having to worry about dimensions and sizes.
  • Con – It limits your field of vision: A major complaint of vertical videos is that while they’re great for mobile, they’re terrible at picking up what is happening in a scene. The much smaller width of vertical means that no matter what event you’re attempting to capture, you’ll only be able to focus in on one or two objects without cropping.
  • Pro – Vertical phones are the way of the future, for now: Importantly, mobile technology has slowed its pace of innovation. While new phones and models are being conceptualized, vertical phones remain the standard for now, and it seems unlikely to change. Vertical video will remain the most optimized orientation for phones until then.
  • Con – Vertical limits the techniques you can use: vertical filming somewhat restricts the way you can compose shots, scan the landscape, and present different scenes. For companies and brands that have more demanding visual requirements, vertical may be too restrictive.
  • Pro – Well-conceived vertical videos are highly creative: Because of the restrictions the mode places on videos, good videos for the orientation tend to be highly creative and unique. This means that while you may struggle somewhat to find a good idea, if you can execute it, you can create a unique and memorable video.

Regardless of the pros and cons, vertical video has been appearing more and more on YouTube and Instagram.

There are definitely some challenges with vertical video, and it isn’t always the best course of action for you. However, by embracing vertical videos and finding ways to make it work, you can give yourself a broader canvas to paint on, and take full advantage of consumers’ mobile-first proclivities.

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