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When to Use Long-Form Video

January 16, 2024

With shortening attention spans, and “same-day delivery” mindsets, it’s easy to believe there’s no longer a place for long-form video in your marketing. But think again. In fact, over the span of 5 years, the amount of long-form videos being created has increased by 446%, whereas short videos only increased by 100.3%. Obviously, long-form video does have a place in your marketing so we’re here to discuss when to use it, and why it’s important.

What Is Long-Form Video?

According to Google Help, long-form videos are defined by being 10 minutes or over in length. But let’s take it a step further.

Long-form video is your opportunity to get more in-depth with your customer, and dive into the details of your product and/or service. It’s your chance to develop the story you are telling, and connect more deeply on an emotional level with your viewer. And this is just the start. Other benefits include:

  • Establishes brand credibility and expertise.
  • Promotes better brand awareness through more thorough coverage.
  • Provides better optimization through SEO, as it ranks well in search results.
  • Gives the opportunity for more “backlink” sharing, with its in-depth knowledge.

So, how to get started creating great long-form video? Let’s see below.

Elements of Great Long-Form Video

While long-form video shares many of the same components of short-form, you’ll find it requires more time and effort in its creation (for obvious reasons). We at Waves have curated a list below of both its similarities as well as differences, to help guide you on this journey.

  1. Ensure you always stick to the topic at hand, and don’t lose focus. Don’t just talk for the sake of talking–make sure there is a reason for each line so that your message stays clear and forefront.
  2. Employ storytelling to keep your customers engaged. Maintaining a story structure keeps viewers around to see how it ends.
  3. As with ALL good video, ensure strong titles and eye-catching thumbnails. This is how your content will pop up in search results.
  4. Due to its length, your long-form video will benefit in using different angles/shots. This could be something as simple as moving your camera to the side angle or using a different location to shoot.
  5. Again, as with ALL good video, ensure great lighting and sound.
  6. Include closed captions, so that your audience always has the option to use.
  7. We believe it bears repeating, so again, be sure to STILL remain clear and succinct. Your viewer’s attention is precious, so fill it with value, not just to fill it.

Want some inspiration? Here’s an example of a (relatively) longer video we shot for our video partner Home Base, capturing this truly powerful story.

Where to Post Long-Form Video

Social media is an ever-changing construct. Recently, TikTok (the king of short-form video) extended their video length to 10 minutes long, encouraging users to lengthen their content.

Other platforms, however, have been hosts to longer video content for some time, and continue to be. So, to get you started, here’s a current list of prime posting platforms:

  • YouTube. Non-verified users can post videos up to 15 minutes long here. However, if you get verified, you can share content up to a whopping 12 hours.
  • Your Own Website. Having your own domain where you can house your content permanently is always going to be a great way to not only boost your SEO, but also lead your viewers to making direct contact.
  • Vimeo. Vimeo is a popular video platform geared more towards video professionals and, thus, higher quality content. It has an even more impressive video max. time of 24 hours, and is a great place to showcase your business and/or product.
  • Facebook. Still the most popular social media site, Facebook has an impressive video length time of 240 minutes. Plus, with an estimated 3.05 billion active users, there’s practically no end to your potential audience reach.
  • LinkedIn. LinkedIn continues to be a growing community for B2B and networking, so is a prime platform for those seeking educational as well as more in-depth video content. Current video max. time is set at 15 minutes when loading from a desktop vs. only 10 minutes when on a smartphone.

As with most things in life, balance is everything so we recommend creating all lengths of video for your brand. Just remember the purpose of each, post accordingly, and stay consistent with both engagement as well as creation.