Sermon Clips Secrets | How to clip your sermons for Facebook, Instagram, YouTubeLast Updated: May 18th, 2021

Video is one the most powerful tools on social media right now. With platforms like TikTok on the rise, other social media sites are also prioritizing short-form video content. The average user will only watch the first five seconds of a video, or less! Which is why it’s so important to create engaging, short videos that capture the viewer’s attention in those first five seconds, in the form of sermon clips.  

Creating short clips of your longer weekly sermons is a great way to create shareable content for your church’s social media pages. Producing shareable video clips is a great way to get your audience engaged online, as well as attract new viewers. Here’s everything you need to know about creating sermon clips for your church.

How to Download Vimeo Videos

Sermon Clips

Many videos are uploaded to Vimeo for its ability to share, view, and embed the content on your website. It’s a great tool for sharing high-quality, long-form videos like your weekly sermons. When you want to create short clips from your full-length sermon and you don’t have quick access to the original video file, an easy way to work with the file will be to download the content from Vimeo. 

If you have the option enabled on your organization’s Vimeo account, you will be able to easily download the file by clicking the download button. This button can be found below the video on its public page, right next to the “share” button.

If you don’t see this option available publically, then the download setting is likely not turned on. If you have access to the account, you can go into the account setting and enable this feature for easy downloads. This feature is only available for paid users of Vimeo with Business, Plus, or Pro accounts. When downloading from Vimeo, there will be an option to choose which file size and resolution you would like to download, including the original file size. Downloading the original file size will always give you the most flexibility and quality options when working with the footage in editing software. However, original files for long videos like sermons can be quite large, possibly making the file difficult to work with on the average computer. 

Having the “Download” feature enabled publicly also allows others outside of your organization to easily download and engage with your content offline. 

If you do not want this feature publicly enabled, but still want to be able to download the videos privately from your account, there are other ways. You can use third-party apps to download Vimeo videos, such as 4k Video Downloader and other similar apps. It’s important to note that downloading and redistributing video content that is not your own, is subject to copyright laws. Downloading, posting and editing content that isn’t your own, is not allowed without express permission from the original owner. 


How to Download YouTube Videos

Sermon Clips

The process of downloading videos from Youtube is similar to Vimeo, however, Youtube doesn’t offer the easily accessible ‘Download’ button. Unless you have direct access to your Youtube video files via login access to the account, you will need to use a third-party app to download the content. This is typically done by copying the link to the desired video, and pasting it into the third party app. There you will be able to choose the file download size (file size options are dependent on the original upload size). Remember, downloading and redistributing video content that isn’t your own is subject to punishment by copyright law. 

Editing Tip and Tricks

Sermon Clips

Once you have your video files downloaded and ready, it’s time to edit your new clips. There are many different video editing softwares available that you could utilize, with varying levels of functionality. The most common softwares currently being used by professionals is Adobe Premiere Pro and Final Cut Pro. These are both paid software, and they require prior knowledge of video editing and the available tools. There are also other, more user-friendly, platforms like Apple’s free iMovie. However, these free softwares are typically limited in their capabilities. 

To begin, you will want to import your original sermon video file into your preferred editing software. From there you will identify the short clips, or sermon snippets,  you want to use to make new individual video clips. Choosing the length of your clips will affect where and how you post them on social media. On Instagram for example, your video posts must be shorter than 60 seconds. However, on IGTV, you must post videos longer than 60 seconds. Choosing your length also depends on the content you are choosing to share. Selecting short, but impactful moments from your sermon will produce the most shareable content for your social media. Aim to capture the viewer’s attention right in the first 5 seconds, and this will help keep them engaged for the rest of the clip. If you need help with this, Missional Marketing has a dedicated sermon shortening service.

Once you’ve chosen your desired clips, you will need to create the new video sequences. Formatting is the next big step. These video clips of your sermon are designed to be shared on social media, so you will want to format them correctly for each social media platform you intend on posting them to.

Sermon Clips

The standard widescreen video format is 16×9. To create this clip, you will set the dimensions as 1920×1080. Typical, this is the format your sermon was originally shot in, so there will be no need for any cropping or readjusting the size. This format is common and can be used on all social media platforms. However, it is not always the most optimal. Taking up screen space on social media is desired and considered optimal for attracting viewer attention, which is why many social media videos are formatted in a square or portrait rectangle instead. For the square format (1×1) you will want to choose the dimensions 1080×1080. You may have to crop or realign your footage to make the subject appear correctly within this square, which can be done in your editing software. Another popular option is to have your video in portrait format, most notably seen on TikTok, Instagram Stories, and Facebook posts and Stories. For this portrait format (9×16) you will want to set the dimensions as 1080×1920. You will likely need to make further adjustments to your video to ensure it fits appropriately within those dimensions. You can also utilize the 4:5 (1080×1350) aspect ratio size for portrait format video posts on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter. 

Choosing the optimal size comes down to a few different factors: the quality and content of the video, the platform you are posting to, and your personal preference. There are typically multiple options available for how you can post on each platform, so it’s then up to you to decide which look you prefer. 

After formatting your clip’s video sequence correctly, you can now edit and add any other elements you would like. You can add your church’s unique branding assets, such as your logo, bug, intro and/or outro and more. You can add in any desired lower-thirds, such as a pastor or speaker’s name. And you can also add any other additional text you may want, such as scripture text, calls to action, and more. Utilize your church’s brand guidelines when adding these elements, to have a consistent look and feel that matches your existing colors/fonts/etc. At this stage, you can even add new background music to your clip to make it even more engaging for your audience. 

Once your clips are finished you will want to export them with the correct size and dimensions. If you want to share the same clip on different platforms, consider exporting the clip in multiple formats to best suit each social media platform. Export each clip in the desired format, and choose which folder you would like the new video clip to be in. Make sure to name your clips with the aspect ratio in the title, so that you can easily view which size it is when you go to upload to social media (ex: SermonName_Length_1x1)

Captioning Tips and Tricks

It’s very important to include professional captioning on your video content, for many reasons. The most important reason being accessibility. Closed Captioning allows all of your viewers to fully access and engage with your content. Having these captions prevents important members of your community from being excluded from your content. But that isn’t the only reason for using captions on your videos. Research shows that most viewers actually watch mobile social media video content with the sound off. In particular, data from Facebook shows that 85% of all video on the platform is watched without the sound on. So unless you have the captions available on your content, many viewers are likely to scroll right past it. Captions allow all users to be able to watch your content how they want or need. And having these options will likely increase your views and engagement, as well as promote inclusivity for all.


How to Get a Transcription 

With advancements in technology, there are now many fantastic tools readily available for captioning your video content. You can always manually transcribe your videos, for full customization. That transcript must then be converted to an .srt file, also known as a SubRip Subtitle File. This is a text file that includes critical information about the captions and time codes, which is how your transcription matches the timing of your audio. These files can be uploaded along with your video content, to ensure that the correct captioning is available for users. Facebook, Instagram, Youtube, Vimeo, Twitter, and LinkedIn all have the ability to upload an .srt file with your videos to ensure accurate captioning. 

You can use one of the many online tools that can automatically transcribe your videos and create an .srt file for you. ( and You can choose to use their automated speech recognition features to generate captions, but these typically aren’t 100% accurate. So they also have the option to have captions generated by real people to ensure better accuracy. Many of these sites even have the option of burning the captions right onto your video content so that they are always there, and don’t need to be turned on to see them. This is a great way to grab everyone’s attention and get viewers engaged in the video right away, even if they have their sound turned off.

Having subtitles on your video content is crucial for having the best results possible, but it can be a time-consuming next step after creating your videos. Here at Missional Marketing, we can provide the service of adding subtitles, with 100% accuracy, to all of your social media video content. 

Quickly Finding Highlights in the Full-Length Sermon

Finding the best and more impactful clips from your sermon is the most important step in the process. You’ll want to choose the snippets that will be the most shareable and watchable for your desired audience. There are a few different ways to go about choosing these clips. If your church provides sermon notes, this is a great place to look first. The notes will typically lay out all of the topics that were covered, and you’ll be able to pinpoint where some of the most notable content is. Another way to help find the best moments is to look at the actual transcript of the sermon. You can use third-party sites to generate accurate transcripts from your sermon, and you can use these to read through the sermon rather than have to watch the whole video. Using a transcript can save you time, as well as allow you to search for certain keywords that you may be targeting. 

There are many ways to find and choose the best clips from your sermon. At the end of the day, it’s all about what message you want to share with your audience. And of course, what message you want your audience to be sharing! A clip that might be impactful for your church, may not be the same for another. 

Sermon Clips


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