Long Form vs. Short Form Videos: Which is Better?

You might already have video in your marketing strategy — but do you have a video strategy? When it comes to short form videos versus long form videos, there's a lot to consider as you decide where to invest your resources. We can help you break these down — read on!
short form videos
By Sarah Rodhouse Nov 10, 2020
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Video is one of the most popular and effective forms of marketing. It’s a rich form of content that can make a meaningful impact on the consumer. But what is the ideal length of a marketing video? Is short form or long form content the best fit for your brand? Let’s dive into the perks of each so you can determine the best strategy for your business.

What Is the Difference Between Short Form and Long Form Video?

Short form videos are any type of video content under 10 minutes long. This can range anywhere from a 5 minute long music video to a 10 minute long step-by-step tutorial. Short form content is the most common type when it comes to marketing videos. 

When the short form content gets even shorter, it is often described as being snackable content. This means that the content is short, easy to consume, and typically attention-grabbing. Snackable videos are made up mostly of short form social media content, from Instagram stories to TikToks to Snapchats. They are easier to create from a production standpoint, and easier to digest from a consumer standpoint. 

As you’d expect, long form content includes videos that are longer than 10 minutes. Common types of this include branded documentary-style videos, Youtube vlogs, TED Talks, and live Q&A sessions. This kind of long form content can be more impactful and meaningful to the viewer, but takes more precision and effort from a production standpoint.

Benefits to Short Form

Grabs Short Attention Spans

As we continue to be overwhelmed with content, people’s attention spans have gotten shorter and shorter. The average attention span of a human nowadays is about 8 seconds long. A benefit to short form content is that it can better hold the attention of the viewer for the entire duration of the video. 

Speaks to the Social Media Audience

Social media users, particularly those of the Millennial and Gen Z groups, consume short form video more now than ever before. Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Snapchat, and TikTok all have their own versions of short form video on their platforms. In fact, according to a study done by Deloitte, consumers who frequently watch short video clips are more receptive to advertising. 

Flexible to Repurpose

Short form content can be repurposed in multiple ways. By putting it on different social media platforms, or teaser videos on your website, the content can be widely shared, giving you more bang for your buck. Long form content can also be used to create multiple short form videos that are easier to digest, and bulk up the amount of content you provide. 

Benefits to Long Form

More Meaningful to Viewer

Long form videos can bring more value to the audience by keeping their attention for a longer period of time. The longer the content is, the more time there is to educate, engage, entertain, and evoke emotion from the viewer. 

Drives Deeper Engagement

Another benefit to long form content is that it drives deeper engagement and connections between the viewer and the brand. For a long video, users have to opt-in and commit to the video, so it can be harder to attract viewers. However, grabbing that emotional connection from the audience will drive further engagement between the consumer and your brand. 

Good for Brand Building

Another way to utilize long form marketing videos is that it can help create and establish a brand. Having long form content can help you steer the branding in the direction you want, while making the user create an emotional bond with your brand. One great example of a long form marketing video is by Patagonia. It establishes their ethos for long-lasting clothing, and more importantly, depicts the emotional bond their customers can have with their products.

The Verdict 

Consider Your Goals

When choosing between long and short form content, consider the goals of your campaign. If you are building a brand and wanting to establish a relationship with the consumer, long form would be more beneficial. In addition, longer videos can improve your SEO, as Google ranks long form content higher. However, if you are looking for more views, click through rates, and traffic, short form might be the way to go. 

Consider Your Audience

If you are trying to determine which type of content is more appropriate for your brand, consider who your target audience is. If you are targeting Gen Z on Instagram and TikTok, short form is the way to go. But if you are trying to reach an older generation on Facebook, long form may be a better option. 

Consider Using Both

Using a hybrid approach to marketing video length is a great way to reach different people and accomplish different goals. To read more about different mobile marketing strategies, click here

If you’re ready to put a video marketing plan into action, CROOW can help. It’s a project management platform aimed at creative collaboration, and it’s free to sign up!