Texting Videos: Everything You Need to Know [2024]

January 18, 2024 | By Sam Pelton
Cartoon representation of someone receiving a text message with a video on their phone

We all know the power of videos.

While it’s true that a picture is worth a thousand words, a video is worth a thousand pictures.

We also know that texting has become the everyday language of many (if not most) people across the United States.

So people love videos and people love texting—therefore, it makes sense that people want these 2 mediums to come together.

You’d think that the process of texting videos would be easy. The concept is simple enough.

But the actual execution of texting videos is a bit complicated, whether you’re sending for personal use or for your business.

In this article, we’ll dig into what you need to know about texting videos. That way, you can be best equipped to take advantage of the combined power of texting and videos for whatever goals you’re trying to achieve.

What Is Video Texting?

Video texting refers primarily to sending text messages that have videos attached to them.

It could also refer to sending text messages containing links that lead directly to videos online.

In its most narrow sense, video texting would only refer to text messages sent via MMS (in other words, “regular texting”). But in the modern vernacular, “texting” can also refer to messages sent via messaging apps such as iMessage, Facebook Messenger, or WhatsApp.

Texting videos allows you to take advantage of the benefits of video—visual appeal and engagement—and share it with customers, friends, or anyone else through a medium that they are likely to see and pay attention to.

Why Text Videos?

There’s a reason why 91% of businesses employ videos within their marketing strategies.

It’s because people love videos. 85% of internet users watch online video content in the United States.

So videos are engaging – and so is texting.

By some accounts, people read 98% of their text messages.

So it makes sense that you would want to use the widely-read channel of texting to engage people with video content they’re likely to enjoy more than text-only (or even image-based) content.

While historically videos have sometimes been difficult and time-consuming to produce, with the prominence of AI, texting videos generated by an AI video generator is easier than ever, and non-produced videos are becoming more and more common in general. So the barriers to video creation are lower, making video texting even more attractive of an option.

Texting Videos: Problems & Solutions with the following and visually appealing icons or geometrics elements

The Problem with Texting Videos: File Size Limits

Although texting videos is a great idea in concept, in actual practice it presents some problems.

The primary issue is file size. MMS has file size limits that make it difficult to send quality videos.

For example, when sending MMS through our texting platform Mobile Text Alerts, the maximum file size is 500 KB. But a 1-minute video can be 24.1 MB or even as much as 348 MB (depending on the quality of the video).

This means that it’s difficult to send videos directly via “regular” texting that have any substantial length.

For messaging apps such as iMessage or Messenger, the file size limits are higher (100 MB and 25 MB, respectively) but still not substantial for videos of much length.

So is there a solution?

There are actually a couple different solutions…

Different Ways to Text Videos

Because of the aforementioned file size issues, there are a few options available to you.

Compressed Videos

If you want to send text messages with videos directly attached, and the video exceeds the file size limits, one option would be to compress the video to make it smaller.

This option has a few disadvantages, however:

  • Depending on the length of your video, it may not even be possible to compress it small enough to be within the file size limits
  • Compressing your video will reduce the quality of your video

(Note that sometimes your video may be automatically compressed by your messaging app in order to get it to send correctly.)

You can use free online video compression tools to compress your videos.

Here’s how video compression tools work:

  • Go to the video compression website
  • Drag and drop the video you’d like to compress into the upload box
  • Alternatively, you can click within the upload box to find the file on your device, or to select a file from Dropbox, Google Drive, or some other link
  • Select how much you’d like to compress the file
  • Select “Compress”
  • Wait for the compression to complete
  • Select to download the file to your device or to upload to cloud storage site (Dropbox, Google Drive)

You’ll then have a smaller file you can use to help stay within the file size limits.

Summary thoughts on video compression:

  • It’s easy to use online video compression tools to make a video smaller
  • It’s not always easy to compress a video to the small size needed to send via text message
  • The reduction of video quality in the process of reduction makes this option not always the most ideal
  • If you have a smaller video for which the quality doesn’t make that much difference to the user experience, compressing the video would be a good option

If you want to keep the integrity of the video fully intact, your best option would be to send a link to your video rather than trying to attach the video itself.

You could upload your video onto social media (i.e., YouTube or Facebook), or you could load it into a cloud storage app such as Google Drive and share the link from there.

The downside to this is that it involves an extra click, which means your recipient(s) may not want to take that extra step, or they may be suspicious of receiving a link.

Summary thoughts on linking to videos:

  • Uploading a video to a social media or cloud storage site is a bit more involved but not too difficult
  • The extra step of needing to click on the link to view the video could be a big deal, particularly for marketing/sales initiatives
  • Being able to share a full-length, high quality video is a major plus for this option
  • This is generally the option we would recommend if you’re wanting to share a video via text message (particularly for business purposes)

BONUS thoughts:

  • When you’re sending links via text message for business purposes, make sure the links are trackable
  • Make sure you present your text message in a way that the link doesn’t seem suspicious to your recipients

Texting Videos to Groups of People: How to Do It

Whichever of the above methods you choose to go about texting your videos, if you’re texting for business (or otherwise non-personal) purposes you’ll want to use a texting platform.

Here’s how you’d do it…

If Directly Attaching a Video File

If you’re directly attaching a video file that’s small enough to send directly via text, here are the steps:

  • Step 1: Log in to the texting platform – You’ll first need to log in to the texting platform and access the “Send a Message” section.
  • Step 2: FIll out your message information – You’ll then need to select the recipients, type out the message content, and attach the desired file.
  • Step 3: Click “Send”!

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screenshot of “Send a Message” page with message typed out “New product announcement! Check out the Nimble Watch 3000 – coming soon!” and a mocked up related video thumbnail attached to the message preview

If you’re directly attaching a video file that’s not small enough to send directly via texting, here are the steps:

  • Step 1: Compress the video – Use online tools to compress the video file if it’s too large.
  • Step 2: Log in to the texting platform – Once your compressed/converted file is ready, log in to the texting platform and access the “Send a Message” section.
  • Step 3: Fill out your message information – Select the recipients, type out the message content, and attach the desired file.
  • Step 4: Click “Send”!

If you decide to go the “sending a link” route, the steps are a little more elaborate:

  • Step 1: Upload your video – Upload your video to your desired social media or file storage platform (for example, YouTube or Google Drive).
  • Step 2: Copy your video’s link – There will be an option to share or copy the video’s link within whatever platform you use.
  • Step 3: Log in to the texting platform – Once you have your link ready, log in to the texting platform and access the “Send a Message” section.
  • Step 4: Fill out your message information – Select the recipients and type out the message content.
  • Step 5: Select “Insert Link” – Use the “Insert Link” option to create a shortened and trackable link that you can include in your message.
  • Step 6: Click “Send”!

10 Free Texting Videos to Download

On a related note, you may be looking for access to free texting videos (videos showing people texting) that you can download and use for marketing or content creation purposes.

Below are 10 free stock videos you can use for any purposes you need, sourced from Pexels which stores videos and images that have licenses allowing free use of the content.

You can use these for purposes such as…

  • Creating engaging video advertisements
  • Creating engaging videos for educational or informational purposes
  • Incorporating in blog posts or web pages

(Click on the “3 dot” icon within the video player to download the video.)

Man in Blue Shirt Texting (9 seconds)

Young Man Texting Near Street (8 seconds)

Finger Texting on iPhone Sitting on Table (10 seconds)

Woman Texting on iPhone at Table (8 seconds)

Young Woman Texting and Smiling in Hallway (10 seconds)

Woman Texting in Car in Parking Garage (8 seconds)

Man Sitting on Couch Texting (10 seconds)

Woman Sitting on Couch Texting (10 seconds)

Man in Airplane Texting and Looking Out Window (14 seconds)

Person Texting While at Computer (14 seconds)

You can view more download options for these videos here.

How to Start Texting Videos Now

Interested in taking a first step in texting videos to customers, leads, or groups?

All that you need to do to get started is:

  • Fill out a quick sign-up form
  • Get contacts loaded into your online account
  • Send your first message

Get a free Mobile Text Alerts trial account now to try it out for 14 days.

Get a Free 14-Day Trial Account

Start sending mass text messages to your entire list today!