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How Long Should Videos Be?

Filed Under: optimal video length @ 10:00 AM August 11, 2017

Determining your optimal video length is one bigstock-Hand-Holds-Smartphone-Video-P-120737783.jpgof the first and most important steps advertisers and businesses need to negotiate during the video planning and production stages. Video length will determine the informational scope of the included content and will narrow down an appropriate storyline and video focus. You can't, for example, run a truly informative and engaging how-to product video in a six second bumper ad. Such a campaign needs a solid minute or more to fully flesh out how a product or service works, consider this Nifty quick vid to see what we mean.

Now, while there is no one optimal video length that works successfully across all platforms and for all advertising purposes, there are some great general parameters that can make the decision easy. Remember though, context matters and what might work for one campaign won't necessarily work for another. Keeping this in mind, the following is a look at four of the most popular social platforms and what lengths we have found generally works best on each:

Social Media Marketing: Finding That Optimal Video Length

  • Instagram :: Ideal length = 30 seconds: Instagram is a platform revolving around images and short video bursts that illustrate where users are and what they are doing. Use of the app includes scrolling through pictures and clicking through visual 'stories'. It's a process the brain does naturally fast; in fact, the brain processes visuals upwards of 60,000 times faster than text. So, when you're advertising on this medium you also need to be quick and visually strong. Keep your videos around 30 seconds here for optimal user engagement.
  • Twitter :: Ideal length = 45 seconds: Twitter's 140-character limits on updates makes this a platform also built on brevity. However, instead of images, users here scroll through texts with their brain processing a bit slower as it parses out the meanings. So here, feel free to lengthen your videos by a bit more than Instagram, but don't go too far over 45 seconds. 
  • Facebook :Ideal length = 1 minuteFacebook continues to reign supreme in the social marketing world. This is the platform users go to to search out trending topics and brands and to find engaging media they just have to share with their friends and families. Here is where snappy videos that are informative and interesting thrive, even if they extend past the minute mark. 
  • YouTube :Ideal length = 2 minutesPeople go to YouTube specifically to watch videos. They are out researching content and brands just like yours. Feel free to go longer and more in-depth on these videos. But also, if you are considering advertising on YouTube, make sure to also check into the use of bumper ads to redirect users t your full videos and website. 

Ready to get started on your next video campaign? Knowing what optimal video length you want to aim for is just the start. Download our FREE Defining: Digital Marketing Guide to learn more about successfully navigating the social media arena.

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