When is a Longer Video Effective?

You’ve probably noticed a common theme in our posts: keep your video as short as possible. If your content doesn’t capture your audience’s attention in the right amount of time, they’ll move along to something else. But is there a case to be made for longer video content? Of course there is. It all depends on the stage of the customer journey, your objectives, and the type of audience you’re targeting.  

As we progress through the customer journey, attention spans increase, and with that, so do the number of options for effective video types.

There are definitely times when a longer commercial or explainer video can grab attention, but for the most part, longer videos will be watched by prospects who are close to purchase or loyal customers who are looking to learn more and become experts at using your solution.

Examples of Effective Longer Videos:

  • Customer on-boarding or training videos
  • Product demos/ demonstrations of new features
  • Tutorials
  • Inspirational content
  • Best practices from other happy customers
  • On a more fun and spontaneous note, vlogs, live videos, and Snapchat/Instagram stories showing interesting things from your company or daily life work great in longer formats.

When creating demo or tutorial videos, try to focus on one aspect or feature of your product. Alternatively, you can bundle them based on your customer personas.

A great example is HubSpot’s detailed Marketing, CRM & Sales Demo, clocking in at just under 30 minutes. See below:

When targeting existing customers, your video’s job is to give your customers all the tools they need to succeed, so feel free to make it as long as you need, but keep the targeting tight and personal. A generic demo video just doesn’t have the same impact as a customized demo that touches on the specific challenges you’re solving for that type of customer.

Another great example is from Intercom. They defined their customers’ pain points and provided a solution in the video below:

Our Shopify guest post dives deep into the customer journey, and which types of videos are most effective at each stage. Check it out to learn about how to use video content of various lengths to capture attention move your prospect through the customer journey.

Where else are longer videos effective?

Forget the customer journey for a second. And marketing, too, while you’re at it.

Has your company considered corporate research videos?

With quantitative data, statistics, surveys, analytics and more, what often gets lost is the human aspect of the customer. “Hard” data is very important for making informed business decisions, but it can never be a substitute for actually hearing from real people themselves.

Companies looking to bring their consumers to life in more natural ways are turning towards video to help present their insights and inspire change inside their organizations.

It goes almost without saying that corporate research videos, at various lengths, are more engaging than yet another PowerPoint presentation. If you want to learn more about this style of video, read:

In closing:

We’re firm believers that videos should be as short as possible, as a general rule of thumb. But there are exceptions to this rule, as you progress through the customer journey and look to engage and educate your customers in new ways. Longer videos can be very effective, when targeted correctly and used at the right stage of the customer journey.

Outside the marketing function, corporate research videos are a great tool for helping big companies get to know their customers, prospects, and the markets they operate in. These videos are documentary style, and lengths can range as much as needed.

What’s your experience with longer videos been like? Have any questions we can help answer? Let us know in the comments.


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