How long should your explainer video be?

Explainer Videos and length are a common question.  Your audience has a short attention span, and explainer videos are an effective way to retain that attention and stand out from...
explainer video length
Explainer Videos and length are a common question.  Your audience has a short attention span, and explainer videos are an effective way to retain that attention and stand out from the crowd. But even explainer videos aren’t magic. The key to retaining maximal engagement is to create explainer videos at the optimal length.  But, what is the optimal length? 

What does engagement look like for an explainer video?

We can try and guess the optimal video length, but good news our friends over at Wistia has done the research so we can stop relying on guesswork. They analyzed 564,710 videos and over 1.3 billion plays to find out what length of video generates the best engagement. The highest level of engagement was found for videos that were up to 2 minutes long. The average engagement for this length is 70%. But what is surprising is that there is no difference between 30-second videos and 2-minute videos. What does this mean for explainer videos? You can take the time to explain a complex concept in as much as 2 minutes, as long as your content is engaging. You won’t increase your engagement by keeping it brief. Keep in mind, however, that there is a huge dropoff past the 2-minute mark. So if you have an explainer video that is 2 minutes and 20 seconds long, you risk losing more viewers. Our suggestion? Edit it down to under 2 minutes.

More factors to keep in mind

Nailing down the length of your video is important, but here are more things you should know.

Social ads require different lengths

While all of the above may be true for the majority of cases, consider creating trimmed-down versions of your explainer video too – 15 and 30-second versions, specifically. These bite-sized snippets provide an exciting teaser about your offer and are effective to attract attention towards a longer piece of content, making them a perfect fit for social ads.  For example, if you are running paid traffic on Facebook, you can have your full-length explainer video on your landing page, but try using a shorter version on the ad itself to get your viewers excited about clicking and learning more.

Consider translating your explainer video

If your brand is global, or if you have a consumer-based offering, you should think about translating your explainer video into foreign languages.  The more languages you do this for, the more potentially engaged eyeballs you can have on your video – and therefore, on your offer. Only do this once you’ve really nailed down your video length and polished up your content so that you don’t do the work twice.

Length is meaningless without amazing content

You can choose the ‘perfect’ length for your explainer video, but if your content is sub-par, you won’t generate the engagement you’re looking for. Only impactful, interesting, and engaging content will retain your viewers’ attention. Keep in mind that as more brands create videos like these, the competition over your audience’s attention becomes more and more ferocious. This means that filling your explainer video with generic content, stock images, and dull templates will most likely help you to blend in instead of standing out.   It’s worth the extra investment to pay for fully custom.  Don’t pay to produce a longer video that feels generic if you can’t afford custom content. You’re better off paying for a shorter, customized video that actually helps you stand out. Need help creating an impactful, customized explainer video? That’s our specialty. Click here to get a custom quote!  
#explainer video length# ideal length video

Wade Koens

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