How Long Should a Social Media Video Be? Tips for Every Platform

Created on:
April 19, 2022

If you're looking to build a brand, social media is the place to be. Whether you're a business owner looking to expand popularity or a CEO of a major company trying to increase revenue, social media provides a low-priced platform to reach billions of viewers quickly.

Instagram

Instagram videos are designed to be relatively short. This not only keeps viewers' attention but also caters to the design of the platform. However, depending on how you're posting, the length of the video can vary slightly. Stories: Up to 15 seconds. These are meant to be short and engaging. Posts: Can be up to 60 minutes, but should be around 2 minutes to keep viewers' attention. Reels: a short compilation of pictures or videos up to 15-30 seconds. Longer videos can be overwhelming and result in reduced user engagement.

Tik Tok

As one of the top social media outlets for videos, Tik Tok has quickly become a popular platform for short, engaging clips. With its young age demographic, Tik Tok users typically scroll through tens or even hundreds of videos per day. If the first few seconds don't capture their attention, they move on. If you're considering posting to Tik Tok, the maximum length is 60 seconds. Many videos, however, fall far below this range. Because of their young age demographic and the sheer number of videos users scroll through, you should keep your videos around 30 seconds or less.

Facebook

Facebook videos allow you to post slightly longer videos, up to 240 minutes in length. However, a viewer will rarely sit down and watch all 240 minutes of a video. Long videos may result in lessened engagement and interest. However, short videos seem to be less effective on Facebook's platform as well. According to Facebook's own data, their videos are most likely to be watched when they are over 3 minutes in length. Unlike quicker platforms like Instagram and Tik Tok, Facebook users spend more time getting in-depth with content.

YouTube

YouTube is social media's top outlet for longer videos. Because their audience is significantly different than other platforms, videos can be several minutes or even an hour. If you're posting on YouTube, you can spend time giving in-depth explanations of products, modeling product use, or engaging users with the product's benefits. However, if you're going to create a lengthy video for Youtube, it's important to keep it engaging. Many users go to YouTube to learn more about their favorite hobbies, learn an important skill, or be entertained through humor. If you plan to create an hour-long video, be sure to keep viewers engaged.

Twitter

Twitter is another platform where length constraints make it a better platform for short videos. At their longest, videos are allowed to be 2 minutes and 20 seconds. However, due to the nature of the platform, shorter videos may be more efficient. When viewers scroll through Twitter, they are typically reading through short posts. With a tweeting limit of 280 characters, users can usually read the post in 15 seconds or less. As a result, videos should stay around this length as well. When posting a video to Twitter, consider keeping it in the range of 30 seconds or less.

Snapchat

Originally famous as a social media outlet for sending pictures and videos to friends, Snapchat has quickly developed into a platform where influencers and companies can advertise. Through the use of stories, you can project videos to those you are friends with or make them public for more users to see. One benefit to Snapchat videos is that you can record multiple videos in sequence to create quick but engaging stories.

The maximum length for a single video on Snapchat is 10 seconds. However, with the use of the multi-snap feature, you can record a single video up to a minute long. Since this platform also features many young users, creating videos that fall into this range of 10 to 60 seconds is most effective. However, you can record multiple videos to extend this length.

The Bottom Line

As a general rule, your social media video should only be the length you need to deliver your message. If your video is too long for the platform, users will not waste their time watching it. Consider the type of video and the video's length before posting. Post longer videos to platforms like Youtube and Facebook but shorter videos to Instagram and Tik Tok.

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