Undoubtedly, short-form videos are dominating the social media marketing space. The question in most marketers’ minds is if long-form videos are still worth the investment.

Yes, and we will discuss why in a bit. But first, here are a few stats to give you context.

Video Marketing Statistics

You only need to consult your inclinations to understand why video has become so popular as a marketing tool. Many people watch videos rather than read text, which is why television commercials are so powerful for brands. For example, big-budget marketers are willing to spend $7 million for a 30-second ad on the Super Bowl because they know the return on their investment will be huge.

The main reason is engagement. You probably remember more things you watched than read because it engages multiple senses. However, is shorter better? For many companies, it would seem so.

Research shows that over half (67 percent) of marketing professionals plan to put more money into producing short-form videos in 2024. That is up from 44 percent in 2023, and 30 percent of those not yet using the format will start doing so. By contrast, only 8 percent are willing to bet on long-form video content.

It seems surprising that TikTok, the quintessential short-form video platform, is pivoting to longer video formats. That is after years of relentlessly conditioning viewers to develop shorter attention spans through dopamine-induced doomscrolling. However, it might not be as surprising as it sounds.

TikTok is the king of short form, but YouTube still dominates the video marketing arena in terms of unique monthly visitors, reach, and revenue. One of the reasons for its grip on social media users is that creators can produce longer videos, which leads to relationship-building. Users may stay on TikTok longer because of doomscrolling, but there is not enough time to build a relationship.

It may not be long before TikTok can no longer claim to be a short-form video content platform. It is beta testing the function to allow creators to upload videos for up to 30 minutes, definitely edging into YouTube territory. The reception has been mixed, but it has been mostly negative.

That brings us to our main point: is there room for long-form videos? Let’s see.

Long-Form vs. Short-Form Videos

Billions of people go on video platforms daily for one reason or another. Some keep it as white noise, while others need to know something. It could be music, funny pets getting the best of their humans, or instructional videos on cooking. 

Whatever the reason, you will always find something online. Marketers aim to ensure you find content that caters to your needs and, hopefully, share it with others in your network. What format would work best for you?

That depends on several factors. Long-form video is versatile, but short-form is popular. The following will help you determine your bandwidth for one or the other.


If you had to choose between a minute-long or 30-minute-long video on the same subject, which would you pick? In most cases, it depends on your goal. Are you looking for a laugh or information? While short-form videos can provide quick-and-dirty answers, they often lack the depth you might need.

As a marketer, you must identify your niche. Are you promoting your brand as a leader in your industry or as a source of inspiration? What is your target demographic? Are you B2C or B2B? Do you want views on mobile?

These are questions you must answer to understand your video creation direction. Surveys indicate that people who go on short-form video platforms like TikTok are under 30, with 76 percent between 18 and 24.

By contrast, YouTube has a much more age-diverse distribution, with 23.5 percent of users between 19 and 25 and 17 percent between 30 and 39. Granted, the YouTube content watched is a mix of long and short-form videos, but the point is that your target audience will dictate the best platform.


As you can probably imagine, producing long-form content will cost more. The time, talent, and treasure needed will not be the same. However, the disparity might not be that much more. Intuitive software and other technologies have made it much easier and quicker to produce videos of any length.

Of course, if you commission someone to create animation for your short video, it would be more expensive than a long-form video about making Beef Wellington. The cost will depend mainly on your content. The short form is definitely a winner if pre-production and editing are minimal.

On the other hand, creating short videos from longer videos hits two birds with one stone. You could post an hour-long podcast episode and extract short videos to promote it. You can’t do that with short-form content as a base.

The cost of producing video content varies widely. Anyone can shoot, edit, and post videos for nothing and get a lot of traction. On the other hand, it might hurt your brand’s reputation if you don’t do it properly. 

Having professionals like an MSP marketing agency handle your video marketing efforts ensures you deliver precisely the message you want. It will cost more, whether short or long-form video, but it will get you to your end goal.

Return on investment

What concerns most marketers is the return on their investment or ROI. Research suggests that short-form video has the highest ROI of all video marketing strategies. However, resharing the same video across different platforms might be counterproductive. 

Suppose you are promoting your brand across multiple networks. You must create other content that resonates with the audience of each platform. In that case, long-form content might be a good alternative, especially live videos, which came in third in ROI (probably because no editing is involved).

So far, the short-form video is winning the trending battle against long-form content. Is long-form content out for the count? Below are the pros and cons of each format.

Short-Form Video

First off, what constitutes a short-form video? Most people equate it with content that is less than a minute, thanks to the parameters set by Instagram Reels and TikTok. However, anything under 10 minutes is technically a short-form video.

At any rate, marketers use short-form content to get and hold viewers’ attention quickly. They are easy to create and consume because they are short and without much dialogue. Usually fast-paced and visually driven, they gained traction quickly among marketers.

Remember how popular Vine was in its heyday? Vine videos were just six seconds long, which was great, but its extreme brevity most likely led to its fall from favor. It seems that 15 to 60 seconds is the sweet spot.

Because people have short attention spans, using short videos to build awareness about your product or service makes sense. It allows you to do so without losing your audience. Most relationships start with hello, after all. If they want to know more, you can complement them with links to longer videos. 

Short-form video helps you slowly make your way into your audience’s minds and establish a connection. State Farm created the Jake character on TikTok to do just that.

Anyone who has seen a short video that doesn’t explain much but catches your attention knows how effective it is. If done well, these videos can lead you to learn more about the creator and watch more content. You can akin this to catching a glimpse of someone in the crowd doing something unusual. 

It arouses your curiosity, so it draws you in. An excellent example of this is the death of Mr. Peanut.

Let’s say you have a fantastic product that no one has ever seen. A long rigmarole explaining the product will not likely draw people in, especially on social media. You can create short video ads that tackle a specific pain point for your audience in an entertaining way. Check out this ad by Chipotle.

It might seem weird, but short videos are the best way to promote long videos. Suppose you have a podcast interview on an interesting topic, but it’s an hour long. You can take the highlights and create short videos about it. It could be the host talking about it or the actual convo. If you choose the right parts, it can lead the viewer straight to your longer content. 

Long-Form Video

Despite the trends, the consumption of long-form videos continues to grow. Granted, it’s not as much as short videos, but they are like apples and oranges. They’re both fruits, but you can use them in different ways.

A long-form video is anything over 10 minutes. You can monetize your channel on YouTube by producing videos over eight minutes, allowing for midroll ads. However, if your purpose is to market your brand, the length of your video will depend on your content. In most cases, that is from 30 minutes and up.

The best feature of long-form video is flexibility. You can discuss complex topics in-depth and immerse your audience in your content. Typically, you want long-form videos for informative or educational purposes, but not always. As a brand, you might want to use them to involve your audience in your vision or engage them in your causes.

From a marketing perspective, long-form content is ideal for search engine optimization (SEO). Because it relies heavily on dialogue and allows longer descriptions, it indexes better in search engines.

Finally, you want long-form content so you can connect with your audience, build relationships, and establish trust. Over time, you develop a kinship with your audience, making them loyal to your channel and brand. Additionally, long-form videos create a community of creators and followers, establishing a bond that will not easily break.

Should you use short-form or long-form video?

There is a lot to consider when it comes to creating video content. However, one persistent question in the industry is which one between short-form and long-form content is better. 

Short-form content works well because of shorter attention spans. When done correctly, short videos deliver messages and engage audiences quickly and easily. Moreover, it is often easier to produce.

However, short-form video content is also limited. Digital marketers only have a couple of seconds. These videos need to be instantly engaging to catch viewers’ attention.

Conversely, long-form video content is excellent for providing viewers with valuable information. Because it is longer, it creates more effective relationships and connections with the audience. Also, long-form videos are great for boosting SEO ranking and performance.

However, it takes more effort to create long-form videos. Not only do they take more time, but they require much more effort and resources to develop high-quality, long-form video content.

Considering all these, the ideal video marketing strategy is utilizing short-form and long-form content to reach a specific targeted audience. Aside from that, short- and long-form content helps achieve video marketing goals and objectives. 

For example, short videos are excellent for boosting online visibility and engaging audiences. However, long-form videos best educate customers. It also helps make your brand a trustworthy source of information.

The bottom line is that video content works, regardless of length. Long-form video content has its place in 2024 despite, or perhaps because of, the popularity of short-form videos. Your job is to discern what best works for you at any given instance.