How Long Should Videos Be for Social Media?
Adding social media videos to your toolbox of marketing collateral is a powerful way to boost engagement and retention among your audience. But with each social media platform catering to different types of viewers, you’ll need to know how to tailor your video content to best suit each platform, including nailing down the ideal video length.
Best Video Length for Facebook
The social media giant that paved the way for many social media platforms to follow has evolved quite a bit over its 16-year existence, including when it comes to video content. Along with the rest of the internet, Facebook has optimized its platform to be very video-friendly, with Facebook Watch earning 8 billion views every day.
Since users on Facebook are very distraction-prone, viewership tends to drop off after two minutes across the board. This means that keeping your videos over 30 seconds but under two minutes will bode well.
With Facebook videos, you also have to consider that 85% of users are watching with the sound turned off, meaning you’ll need to include strong visuals and possibly captions.
Nailing down the ideal length for video content on Instagram has gotten increasingly complicated over the past few years. While it used to be a big deal that you could post videos on your feed, Instagram now hosts Stories, IGTV, Instagram Live, and Reels, which each have significantly different duration perimeters.
The classic Instagram feed video can be up to 60 seconds in length, with the ideal length for engagement being 26 seconds.
IGTV videos can be up to 15 minutes long if you have a standard account. However, the limit climbs to 60 minutes if you have a large following or a verified account. Focusing on a video length limit on IGTV isn’t as beneficial as it is on normal feed videos since it’s going to be longer than what you can show on your feed regardless. Since the first minute will play on the feed before users can view the rest of it, be sure to make your introduction strong.
When it comes to the new Reels feature, the length is capped at 15 or 30 seconds depending on your settings, but either way, there’s little benefit in focusing on capping the length of these videos.
When it comes to Stories, each clip will be capped at 15 seconds, so if you have a larger amount of content to post on your stories, it will be broken up. Generally speaking, keeping your story around three parts results in the most engagement.
Meanwhile, Instagram Live videos can be up to four hours long, and people generally know what they’re in for if they choose to tune in, so don’t sweat the length on this one.
While Twitter used to cap videos at 30 seconds, the platform now allows videos to be up to two minutes and 30 seconds. But since Twitter users are accustomed to looking for quick bites of content on the platform, it’s recommended to maintain the 30-second cap.
The quintessential video platform on the internet is a more powerful video marketing tool than ever. And since users specifically seek out YouTube to escape into longer stints of viewing, it’s a great place to get more creative and to flesh out your ideas more thoroughly.
The ideal length tends to fall in between six and eight minutes, but don’t stretch out your content if you can get the point across in less time. And if your video is about to go over in length, consider breaking it up into a series.
Of course, to make the most of your video marketing pursuits, don’t forget to team up with a video production team that understands your vision and knows what they’re doing.