It’s certainly no secret how useful video content can be when it comes to reaching out to and engaging with an audience, and this is true for both long-form and short-form videos. Determining which is more beneficial to you will depend heavily on your objectives, your audience’s preferences and needs, the type of content you’re striving to make, and several other factors.
Today, we bring you a comparison of short-form versus long-form videos, along with the benefits each one would provide you with, to help you learn which would best suit your needs!
What are the Differences?
The term ‘short form’ here refers to videos that are under 10 minutes long, though pieces of content under 60 seconds are also referred to as ‘snackable’. These two categories are the home of all the video ads and trailers you see every day – and podcasts with 5 to 10-minute episodes fall under short-form content, too.
In any case, because it’s designed to be more straightforward and minimal, less is often more with this kind of content.
Platforms that support and work best for short-form videos include:
2. YouTube Shorts
4. Pinterest (including idea pins and video pins)
6. Facebook and Instagram reels
7. LinkedIn, FB and/or IG Stories
Long-form videos are usually defined as any piece of video content over 10 minutes long. Examples include longer podcast episodes and YouTube videos, infomercials, webinars, brand films, and more.
As such, platforms that are ideal for long-form content include YouTube and podcast sites – though many platforms support both long and short-form videos:
2. Facebook (posts)
3. Instagram (posts)
4. Twitter (posts)
5. LinkedIn (posts)
Both forms of video content can resonate well with their respective audiences, and both types are highly shareable in their ways.
So, what are the benefits of each?
Benefits of Short-Form Videos
An immediate point in short-form videos’ favour is the fact that with people’s attention spans getting shorter and shorter over the years, they’re often looking for smaller, more direct and to-the-point pieces of content with minimal background or ‘filler’ information. Short-form videos are better at achieving this, so users are less likely to click away or debate whether it’s worth the watch time.
Turning longer content into shorter segments or teaser videos is a feasible method here, especially since you can compile them into a miniseries and maximize your reach that way. This also feeds into the memorability of shorter videos and the encouragement to keep watching, since users will be eager to see what’s coming next.
Speaking of anticipation, short-form videos can be used to announce and get people excited for any long-form content that you might be putting out later.
Additionally, short-form videos work very well on many social media platforms and they are easier to repurpose than long-form videos. As a bonus, snackable videos tend to go viral more easily than longer videos!
Short-form videos are also, like most forms of shorter content, much more optimized for consumption on mobile devices, cost-effective, quick and easy to make.
If your objectives have to do with raising awareness (Particularly among those who don’t yet know your brand), brand visibility, clicks/clickthrough rate, increasing engagement, or directing traffic to your other channels, short-form videos are ideal for your strategy.
Being as memorable as they are, short-form videos can also be used to establish connections with your viewers, and they could be just as effective in this regard as long-term videos are depending on your audience and their preferences.
Speaking of which…
Benefits of Long-Form Videos
There are a lot of benefits you can reap by utilizing long-form video formats, such as their ability to paint a greater, more in-depth brand image, the room they provide for presenting substantial content and influencing the way viewers think, and the fact that by telling a story this way, you gain the ability to make long-term connections with those viewers.
Long-form videos can provide a lot of value for consumers looking for in-depth, detailed content on a particular topic. Also, like short-form content, it can be memorable and leave an impact on your viewers, though it can be somewhat harder to achieve what with the shorter-attention-span issue of today.
Assuming people are willing to invest the time into completing one of these, long-form videos provide a lot more watch time and arguably keep people engaging with your content longer. This also helps boost your brand’s SEO and visibility.
Providing detailed demonstrations of products is a very good use of long-form videos in particular, since these can go a long way toward easing any doubts people might have about a product, teaching them about the features and benefits, and providing realistic expectations.
Also, remember how short-form videos can be created by splitting up long-form ones? Well, the reverse is also true – you can combine shorter videos that relate to one another into a single, longer piece!
Keep in mind that, in general, the longer your video is and the more resources, tools, and time that you put into it, the more expensive it will be to make. However, if the resulting content is of high quality and resonates well with the people you’re trying to reach, then I say it’s worth it!
If you are focused on fulfilling objectives like educating your viewers on a product, service, event, etc., increasing customer loyalty and/or brand affinity, building up your brand image, generating leads, gaining more ad revenue, and/or positioning your brand as an authoritative voice in your field then long term videos are a good way to go.
In the end, the type of video content you use is up to you. Short-form, snackable, long-form, a little bit of each – whatever works best in reaching your audience and achieving your goals!If you need help with marketing your long or short-form video content, don’t be afraid to reach out – AIM Social is here to help! Click here to learn more about hiring us and/or fill out an application form.