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Creating viral content on VK. Effective Strategies, Tips and Tools for Promoting Through VK Clips



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In the last couple of years, the Russian-speaking internet was stormed by a new content phenomenon – VK clips. These short engrossing videos on different topics — from dance performances to DIY lifehacks, increase in popularity and attract audiences far away beyond the borders of Russia. Daily views of VK Clips at the end of 2023 increased by 32% to 949 million compared to the same period in 2022. Time spent on VK Clips grew by 100%, including thanks to a new recommendation system with a smart content feed within the app. The number of published clips increased by 78% and the number of content creators by 74% over the same period.

As this content format was already appreciated by users all over the world, it is time to find out the factors driving the dissemination of VK clips and explore the ways businesses can use this service to attract a Russian-speaking audience.

Short Videos on VK: Innovative Format or an Alternative to Banned Services

Short video format broked into the everyday life of social media users to firmly settle in it. It would not be an exaggeration to say that the format has revolutionized the way we consume and engage with digital content. In our fast-paced, interconnected world, this condensed and dynamic medium has captured the attention of audiences worldwide, and Russia is not the exception. Whether it's the concise storytelling of TikTok, the engaging snippets on Instagram* Reels, vlogs on YouTube or the inventive moments found in VK clips, short videos offer a compelling glimpse into diverse narratives, talents, and creativity. 

Due to the official ban of Instagram* and the restricted access to TIkTok for Russia-based users, popularity of clips on VK began to grow rapidly. The audience of the platform amounts to 100 million users, which contributes to a wider reach and increased exposure of VK clips. And large outflow of Russian users from banned services to VK only promotes growing numbers of views.


Challenge by blogger Milana Khametova #Bagner$. The user should make a music video to tracks from the singer's new album Banger$ to get a chance to win a meeting or a video call with the star.

The Enigma of VK Clips Popularity

VK clips have gained popularity predominantly among Russian-speaking users, but this format have also attracted an international audience for a few reasons:

  • VK clips can be characterized by diverse and engaging content, such as music videos, short movies, comedy sketches, and more. The reason for this variety is a wide range of interests and demographics, contributing to content popularity.

  • VK provides strong social sharing capabilities, allowing users to easily share and search VK clips. This social sharing arrangement has a significant influence on the spreading of these short videos.

  • Integration with Music and Entertainment: VKontakte integrates music and entertainment seamlessly into its platform, making it a go-to destination for music lovers and fans of entertainment content, consequently boosting the popularity of VK clips.

  • The platform suggest simple tools for creating and promoting clips, encouraging user-generated content and creating an extra loyal community around VK clips.

Key Features and Advantages of Clips on VK for Business

Now lets figure out what VK clips actually are. We speak about the short vertical videos that you might find in the appropriate section on one of the most popular Russian online social networking platforms. 

These clips can be published both by regular users and businesses’ accounts. Clips comprise a wide range of content, such as music videos, comedy sketches, short films, etc., created and shared by VK users. 

Athough this section is available in desktop and mobile versions of VK, only via app the videos can be downloaded. That means that clips are more focused on mobile devices users, who are considered to be a more proactive audience. Furthermore, unlike the desktop version, VK application doesn’t allow hiding the clip section, so it is the guarantee that the user will face it regularly.

The section contains 4 tabs including the user's own clips, the short videos that are recommended for a user, and the ones that were published by accounts user is subscribed. Also there is a search for clips by the specified topic.
Interface of VK Clips App

To maintain and raise customers’ loyalty companies may focus on creating useful content that would demonstrate concern for clients interests and understand their needs. Uploaded clips will cover warm audience that follow the business’s account on VK.

For brands, which are interested in attracting new audiences, it is very important to work with the recommended tab. The goal for such companies is to make viral content and get to the top of the popular short videos so that as many target users as possible may see it. 

Spreading of clips depends on the performance of a built-in neural network, its algorithms consider users’ interests and their engagement (including views, likes and shares). 

VK recently stated that the new recommendation system is now performed in the clips section. The social network’s tape is now adapted for users in a real time mode. The system also takes into account positive and negative users’ feedback.

As the algorithms are constantly trained, VK's approach to ranking the clips may modify over time. This will provide a more and more optimized recommendation system in the future.

Promotion Tools For Bringing VK Clip to the Top

Like any other social networks VK has its own specifics of promotion. Creating and publishing a clip business have to take into account some guidelines and technical characteristics as well as the restrictions of the platform.

One of the auxiliary tools to make the video be seen by many users and then go viral, is an appropriate description with relevant hashtags. Another component of a successful VK clip is a musical score. Popular tracks may help with getting to the Recommendation tab, but use music from an official VK library to avoid problems with right holders. Also the service allows you to attach stickers and masks to make the video more eye-catching.

Although you can tag your items in the video, we don’t advise you to advertise your product directly. Use native promotion to win over the users and gain their trust. There is the opinion that VK algorithms may even hinder the spread of clips with direct advertising.

In addition to native clip placement, VK has paid opportunities to promote content for business accounts through the VK-advertising platform. 

For performance tasks aimed at direct sales, it is better to use promotion through the advertising cabinet. Here, you can upload 1 to 3 videos and choose a caption that calls to action. Next are the standard settings: geo, age, audience interests. It is best to use this format when you have a website or lending, where you invite users. A platform in a social network should also be. It is important to remember that there are only two options for keeping the audience: they looked at the record and went to the community or through a link. Such an advertising record is placed in the "Clips" feed.

Blogger Marie Crymbery VK Clips
Paid VK clip promotion inside the app. Blogger Marie Crymbery talks about VTB bank card, below the screen appears a button "Sign up for a card", taking the user to the bank's website.


For media tasks aimed at brand recognition, you can use the format of promotion through community tools. Everything is much easier here: choose a site, publish a clip and send it to targeted advertising as a regular wall post, using geo, socialdem, etc. settings. In this case, the publication will be reflected in the feed as a regular entry.

Paid VK clip promotion
Paid VK clip promotion as a feed targeting publication format including video, text and link to the VK community.

What you definitely should not do is to create unacceptable content and use  explicit language otherwise your video may be deleted and your account will be banned. 

Since VK clips have appeared fairly recently, they have not yet had time to become the main tool for brand promotion. Rather, it is an additional option designed to attract the audience paid promotion and native ways. Which option would be better? Here, as always, the answer is found in testing and analytics. 

It should be taken into account that clips with paid promotion through VK-advertising are less likely to gain more views than native stories. However, they can lead the user to a targeted action. At the same time, native clips with bloggers' involvement are able to raise huge attention to the brand. In any case, the VK clip should be interesting for the target users.

Creating a Future Top Recommendation Clip: How to Make Your Short Video Go Viral

How to make your videos to get VK recommendations? We guess, it is the key question for any brand, which promotes via such efficient tool as VK clips. To make to the top of VK the video should become very popular, spread really widely among the users and get a large number of reactions. Here are some tips how to achieve this goal:

  • You have to keep an eye on trends of the social network. Videos, which bang on trend, are shared better and have more chances to go viral.


Megamarket brand clip from the trending #StarHoroscope with Yan Dilan.

  • Integrate the triggers that your target audience may react to into your videos: show users that your product can solve their problem. According to VK’s research, by the end of 2022 the most popular topics in Clips were funny animals and cars. Users of the service also prefer watching humorous and educational short videos.


Top popular VK Clips


  • Speaking of the clip story, try to capture the drama in your video to create suspense, use conflict setting and storytelling and don’t forget to make the first 3-5 seconds catchy to involve users.


MTS Tourism brand clip in the style of a Russian fairy tale, playing on the Russian proverb: "no tale to tell, no pen to describe" as a hint at the comfort service.


  • Show the expertise in your niche — create lifehacks on your topic, help users to figure out with the difficult issues, give helpful advice, the audience will obviously appreciate it and share it to their followers.


Danone brand clip with recommendations about baby nutrition.


  • Get a wider audience acquainted with your brand. Tell VK users curious facts about your team and product using the prism of the human-centered approach.


Tinkoff brand clip of an employee who is able to work from home.


  • Work on the quality of your content – to stay competitive it should look professional. Develop your own unique style to stand out from the millions of clips.


Clip of Vkysno-i tochka with the central character a branded delivery packet looking at people.


  • Choose the genre, which can attract your target audience. Some kind of clips would receive many views with a higher probability, among them entertainment content, products testings and overviews, unpacking video, lifehacks, clips about trends and challenges.


Clip review of Dior and Herorange blushes on the page of beauty blogger Mua Marisha.


Forecast for the Development of VK Clips in 2024

It is likely that VK clips and short video content, in general, will continue to play a significant role in the Russian-speaking digital landscape. Based on current trends and the increasing popularity of short-form video content on social media platforms, it's reasonable to expect continued growth and innovation in the VK clips space.

The platform could introduce new features and tools such as  improved editing capabilities, special effects, and filters to facilitate the creation of high-quality and engaging VK clips. 

Bloggers expect new monetization opportunities, which would include advertising partnerships, brand integrations, or direct monetization features similar to those seen on other social media platforms.



VK Author

Total number of views 


Ruslan Sharipov



Anton Chaley



Roman Dorohin



Sofia Makeeva



Denis Milyukov



Denis Bubnov



Mari Klimova



Irina Pustovoit



Igorek Kiryanov






Algorithms will definitely be improved to provide even more personalized and engaging content suggestions for users. And the list of content types will likely be expanded considering new interests, topics and genres. 

The short videos on VK is a relatively young but promising and prospective format. For the three years of its existence there were more than 45 mln short videos published on the platform.

Clips is obviously a noteworthy tool of promotion on social networks, and the brands which keep a pulse on the market already use it successfully. We are sure that in the short term the popularity of VK clips will only continue to grow, opening new opportunities for businesses to advertise their products to a wide engaged audience.

Despite the fact that some familiar platforms were banned in Russia, and some of them imposed restrictions on content publishing and advertising for Russian users, the market already managed to adapt to new circumstances. VK clips is a vivid example of an alternative tool, which gained popularity partly due to limited advertising options, and many brands actively use this service for promotional purposes.

In RMAA we constantly monitor the situation in the Russian advertising market, learn and test the newest marketing tools. If you want to stay up to date on the latest trends of the Russian advertising market, follow our blog, where we share the information about most efficient promotion channels and mechanics.



*Meta Platforms Inc. project, the activities of which are prohibited in Russia.


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About the Author

Digital Strategist. Head of one of the project groups at RMAA. Maria started her journey in digital marketing in 2009. 

Author Maria Romanenko

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