How Long Should Your Videos Be On Each Social Media Platform


Share this Article

How Long Should Your Videos Be On Each Social Media Platform

How much thought do you put into the length of the videos you post on social media? A beginning SMM mistake is often thinking that the video should just be “as long as it needs to be”: short and pithy for an announcement, for instance, and longer for more of an in-depth video essay. While there is wisdom in this, you also have to consider the algorithm of the social media platforms that you post your video to. Some video lengths will perform better on certain social media platforms than others.

So how do you unlock those ideal video times on each platform? Luckily, we have a guide for you to learn how long your videos should be on every major social media platform that allows videos:


YouTube restricts video length to fifteen minutes for its general creator base. However, if you have a verified account, you can upload videos that are longer than 15 minutes. As far as the ideal video length, there’s a great deal of variation on YouTube compared to other platforms. YouTube is a video only platform. You can find videos that are a few seconds long or videos that are as long as 10 hours. The algorithm favors whatever viewers seem to like at that moment.

However, as more and more users turn to YouTube as an alternative to TV, longer videos seem to be gaining more traction. Videos of 30+ minutes or longer perform very well, providing a deep dive into the subject of the video. Lengthy video essays between 1-2 hours are a very popular trend right now on YouTube. For videos that are less than a minute long, consider uploading a YouTube Short.


TikTok is the second most popular video-centric social media platform after YouTube. It allows videos of at least 3 seconds but up to 30 minutes in length. Because of the scrollable nature of TikTok, short videos between 20-30 seconds perform very well, getting the point across without straining the attention of the viewers. These videos tend to be most likely to have the highest full watch rate, meaning viewers stick with the video from beginning to end without scrolling.

However, videos between 3-10 minutes tend to have the highest views overall. This indicates that TikTok’s algorithm favors these longer videos and tries to push these out to viewers. If you plan to post a longer video, you have to make sure that the content is engaging throughout.

Instagram Reels

While Instagram has always allowed videos as a part of their image-centric platform, Reels is the portion of their platform that is specifically geared towards video format. Instagram Reels can be up to 90 seconds long. After that, you’ll have to post the video as a regular Instagram post, which can be up to 60 minutes. However, if you want an ideal Instagram Reels length, stick to the shorter side: 7-15 seconds. This holds attention on a scrollable platform, and it can easily be shared on Instagram stories, which pushes the exposure of the video even further.

Facebook Watch

Similar to Instagram, Facebook is a platform that didn’t start with the intention of focusing on video posts, but as YouTube and TikTok grew as social media platforms, they created their own solution. That solution was Facebook Watch, which allows videos to be up to a whopping 240 minutes. This is perfect for streaming an original show or movie, or even a tabletop RPG actual play. But if you want a really effective Facebook Watch video, you’ll want to keep it short. 30-90 seconds tends to work best for holding the attention spans of viewers on Facebook.


Twitch operates a little differently. It focuses on live streams, often for gamers, which can run quite long. You can stream prerecorded content to Twitch much like you would upload a video, but it will go out at a certain time and may be limited in terms of replay. For instance, typically only your subscribers can replay content after the stream goes live.

Twitch viewers are prepared to sit down for a bit of a haul, so streams can be rather lengthy. If you want to perform well on Twitch, the ideal stream length is between 3-4 hours. Let your video be comfortable, more like settling in and hanging out with your audience.

X (Formerly Twitter)

X (formerly and still colloquially called Twitter) is primarily a text-based platform, though users can upload videos and images. Videos can be about 2 and a half minutes in length, at least as far as video ads are concerned. Like Facebook and Instagram, less is better. Go for 6-15 seconds if you want your video to really take off on X.

More To Explore

Ready To Generate More Leads for Your Business?

Click on the button below to book a Free consultation