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Whether you are creating for Instagram Reels, TikTok or YouTube Shorts, these 5 editing tips will help your short form video content stand out from the crowd!

1 - Colour Grading

This is easily one of the most powerful ways to create a consistent look and develop recognizable creative style throughout your video content. It might seem like a time consuming process, and it can be a when you are just starting out, but it doesn’t have to be! I used to spend hours obsessing over the perfect grade and struggling to match one shot to the next, but since developing my own Cinematic LUT Collection, it has cut down my editing time to a fraction of what it once was. 

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2 - Captions and Key Words

You might be surprised to know that as many as 70% of people in public places and 25% of people in private consume short form video content without sound. So if you video isn’t optimised for these viewers you can almost guarantee that it is getting skipped. The most obvious way to do this is with subtitles that compliment your voice over (if you have one), or better still, ensure that your videos are as visuals as possible using the idea of “show not tell”. However, even if you focus on making your videos visually clear and engaging, it is still important to include any key words in the caption and even overlayed onto the video itself. Not only is this important for an engaging video, but it is also important to ensure that your video is categorised correctly and shown to the right audience. 

3 - Pacing

Naturally, the huge rise in short form content has led to a general decrease in attention span on social media platforms. So keeping your viewer engaged throughout the video is arguably the most important factor that will define the success of a video.

A great way you can achieve this with your editing is by using fast cuts with constantly changing shots and angles to keep your viewers switched on, leading to higher watch time and better results. If your content includes shots of you talking to the camera, try to cut in additional elements like text, photos or any other video footage that supports the story or context.

4 - Apps and Software

Using editing apps or software can not only offer a more efficient content creation workflow, it also opens up endless possibilities when it comes to effects, transitions, text and colour grading – helping your videos to stand out even further.

Photo by Matthew Kwong

Most of the time I edit my video content on my editing laptop as I find this is the quickest and easiest way for me personally, but if you prefer to use your phone or just want to edit on the go there are plenty of great editing apps out there that will give you and edge over the default editing features on Instagram, TikTok or YouTube Shorts.