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How long should your social media videos be?

10 May 2022

With the rise in popularity of video content, understanding how long your video content should be is vital. If you are trying to appeal to different algorithms or are simply trying to attract more people, understanding video content is key to any marketing campaign. It can depend on the different social media platforms as to how long a video can run, this can be anything from just 1 second to hours. Working out how long your videos should be can be tricky which is why we have put together this blog. 

Tips on creating the best video content 

Firstly, let's go over why video content is a must. Hootsuite states that in 2022 watching video content is the fourth most popular reason people use the internet. This means NOW is the time to get on board. When creating video content there are a few things you should think about: 

  • Keep it clear - Video content can be tricky. Making sure the audio is clear and the visuals are crisp is very important, so avoid any design elements that may overcomplicate the visuals. 
  • Captions - Hootsuite has found that 30% of users between the ages of 18 - 24 are watching videos with sound more than ever, however, you should still be thinking of the 70% who want to enjoy your content without sound. So adding accurate and grammatically correct captions is important. 
  • Be punchy - Make sure you consider the song/music you’re using within your content. Understand the trends and what works with the content you are sharing. This will help you engage with the right audience. 
The best length for Instagram videos 

Instagram has been hinting at a video take over for years, with Adam Mosseri head of Instagram expressing that they are no longer a photo-sharing app in 2021. That brings us to the 3 different areas you can share video content within the app: 

Instagram Video

As of 2021, the platform combined its main feed videos and the IGTV feature into a simple format called Instagram video. The max length will appear on the grid at just 1 minute however once the viewer clicks through to watch the full video it can be up to 15 minutes long. If you have a verified account you can upload videos up to 60 minutes long from your desktop!

However we recommend that you try not to go over the 1-minute mark, and if you can’t cut it down aim for anywhere between 2-5 minutes. This is because short and punchy videos stop the Instagram scroller! 

Instagram Stories 

Instagram stories take up 72.6% of the platform's total ad reach, so it is important to keep people engaged. The max length of stories is 15 seconds per slide. Feel free to use multiple slides however we wouldn’t recommend going over 7 slides. Along with this make sure you add a CTA on each slide, so the audience understands your messaging. 

Instagram Reels 

This format is Instagram's answer to TikTok. Reels are tailored to viral moments and quick-hit videos. When creating content for Reels, you need to select the runtime, this can be 15 seconds, 30 seconds, 45 seconds or even 60 seconds. You can choose any length, but the sweet spot of a reel is within the first few seconds. You need to grab your audience straight away so they do not scroll past. 

The best length for Facebook videos

On Facebook you can share videos with a max length of 240 minutes, however, we wouldn’t recommend this. To create viral content, Facebook recommends that video content should be less than 1 minute and for stories less than 20 seconds. However this doesn’t mean you can't upload longer videos, if you are posting a  web series then we would suggest no longer than 3 minutes. 

One thing to remember when creating video content for Facebook is that the algorithm likes a native. This means you should upload them directly to the platform rather than using a Youtube link. 

The best length for TikTok videos

As we all know, everything about TikTok is fast!! This means you need to make sure the information you are trying to share is easily digestible. Last year, the platform extended the max video length a creator can use, from 1 minute to 3 minutes and now to 10 minutes! But we would still suggest keeping it short and sweet. The 15-second mark is the best to aim for, it allows you time to hook the audience and keep them interested. 

If you’re interested in finding our more great social media tips, head over to our blog today.