How YouTube Video Length Affects the Viewing and Subscription Figures of Your Content

It is an obvious fact that if your content is too long, too boring, and seems too much like an advertisement rather than a sharing of information or knowledge, few people will want to watch it never mind share it with their community. Yet we’ve all come across examples of overly-long, poorly-edited videos. This article helps you understand how the length of your YouTube video can affect your viewer numbers, subscription figures, and income potential.

Bearing in mind the sheer volume of content available on YouTube and the mind-set, concentration span and approach of those using it, the key point is to keep your video content relatively short and to the point. As a starting point, always focus on providing information that’s relevant, pertinent, and of value. Remove any potential obstacle by providing short, targeted segments that require little commitment from the viewer when they’re working their way through search results.

Clearly, some videos for example, musical performances, lectures, sleep-inducing music or relaxation/mediation videos and so on, are by their very nature, going to be lengthier. Here extended videos are entirely appropriate to viewer expectations but only if the content is still relevant and delivers what the audience wants. Protracted, drawn-out, inconsequential waffle will not endure you to your viewer who will quickly move onto other more appealing content…

For other genres, such expectations are not present. Whether you’ve produced training videos, how-to instruction videos, testimonials, or product trailers, if your users don’t have to spend a lot of time, they’re much more likely to watch it. While regular users can upload videos of up to 15 minutes in length, YouTube recommends two to three minutes as the optimum extent for an audience with millions of other videos to choose from.

Your users are more likely to click on a video that’s under three minutes than ten, especially if they are under time-constraints like work breaks. While it can be initially hard to produce such succinct content, it becomes much easier with practise. Learning this skill will greatly improve the likelihood of your content being watched – which is the point of spending all that time and effort creating it.

Editing longer videos into shorter segments will also boost your subscription numbers. Breaking down longer videos allows you to create series or packages based on topic themes. One extended video can be turned into a series of five or ten shorter ones which will improve your overall upload figures. If your visitors like what they see, they’ll be more inclined to subscribe to your channel to see the rest of the series and to keep up with your latest material.

Unless you’re live streaming content, it makes a lot of sense to break down longer recordings into shorter segments, especially if the concepts in the video are complicated or complex. Brief bursts of information are easier to absorb and retain which means your video is offering better value to your audience.

Increasing the number of videos in your channel also benefits you if you want to generate income on YouTube. Partners are able to monetise their content and generate income. YouTube restricts Partner status to those who amongst other things, produce a larger number of high-quality videos than the average user. Creating a large volume of videos will make it much easier for you to qualify for YouTube Partner status.

Finally, shorter-length videos are easier to subtitle (captioning or transcribing), especially if you are working from a pre-written script. Subtitling is a valuable tool which strengthens your video’s SEO (search engine optimisation) ratings, as well as expanding your potential readership base to those who are unfamiliar with your language or who are hearing-impaired.

If you intend to produce high-quality material to establish your reputation and expertise in your niche, it is worth learning some key editing skills to ensure you produce the best video possible. There are books and courses available for those who want to learn these skills in more depth. As a starting point, this article aims to encourage you to think why length is an important factor. Good content publishers are focused on what to put into a time-limited video – information that’s appropriate, pertinent, and of significance to the viewer.

Sumi Olson is the author of the Amazon five-star rated, “How to Manage Your Social Media Marketing in 30 Minutes A Day”, and is an author, platinum-rated article writer, speaker and consultant on social media & business development. With 25 years’ experience in book publishing, business development, online selling, sales & marketing, Sumi is expert in reducing overwhelm and turning insights into implementation. youtube live stream views