Got a minute? How about ten minutes? Twenty? If you were to search “optimal length for business video”, you’ll mostly see advice that ranges from eight seconds to two minutes. There will be a repeated theme that shorter is better. You’ll read evidence of our short attention spans and how social media caters to quick hits. Even though we’ve also given this advice in past blogs, we’re going to tell you today why long-form video can be a smart choice.
What is Long-form?
First of all, what’s considered long-form? Google Ads contend that short-form videos are under ten minutes and long-form videos are over ten minutes. The Shorty Awards honour social media videos that they consider long-form; and in the realm of Facebook and Instagram, a video qualifies as long-form if it’s two minutes or more. We feel the best definition of long-form video is: one that runs longer than is typical for its distribution channel. Think about some of the Super Bowl ads that run sixty or even ninety seconds—long, right? But how many TED Talks are under ten minutes? Long-form is a fluid definition that we ask you to keep in mind while reading this blog.
Long Doesn’t Have to Mean Slow
Long-form video can be incredibly effective and affective. It has different goals than short-form video. Longer content gives you time to develop and tell a story. That means you can build a relationship with the viewer, earning their trust. Concentrate on brand reinforcement by backing off the hard sell that’s often necessary with a short video. Rather than presenting your product or service with a fleeting visual, you can work to instill a feeling about your company.
This video presented by REI is a short documentary on how strangers with one thing in common helped fulfill a man’s dream. By the end, we think you’ll remember the people and their stories. Somewhere in the back of your mind, we bet REI also cultivated a good feeling you’re going to associate with their brand.
Storytelling for Long-Form Video
Storytelling has never been more important than with long-form video. You have the opportunity to tell a brand story. By knowing and speaking directly to your target market, you can give them satisfying and fruitful content. Emotional engagement is key. A customer will be more willing to provide data if they get something in return—perhaps entertainment or advice. Create brand trust and capitalize on this value exchange.
SK-II is a Chinese skincare brand and high-end beauty product company. The company made a mini-doc about “leftover women”. They found their audience, told their story and connected with the viewer. Through this video, SK-II grew brand allegiance and created a positive association.
There’s evidence that long-form viewing has been making gains in the last few years. YouTube is a big supporter of long-form video and its algorithm rewards this kind of content. The longer the video, the longer you spend on YouTube and that’s the platform’s goal. The average length of a first page YouTube video in almost fifteen minutes. Need more evidence? A Wochit study from 2017 found that longer videos got more shares and more views than their shorter counterparts.
The Long and Short of It
At Key West Video, we think you can have your cake and eat it, too. We commonly create a longer master video for clients and also provide shorter cutdowns. It’s our job to tailor videos to the subject and the platform. We like to think of it as one-stop shopping that suits all your needs. If you’re ready for a video that speaks to your customers no matter where they see it, call us today for a free quote.