When creating video content, aiming for a length of around 90 seconds is hailed as the golden rule. 90 seconds is enough time to adequately explain a complicated message or idea, while not being too long to keep your audience’s attention. While this rule applies to a lot of videos, it isn’t one-size-fits-all.
For some videos, 90 seconds is not the ideal length. Though it might not seem it, 90 seconds can be far too much, spreading your message thin or burying it in fluff.
Explainer videos should be both informative and entertaining, making excessive length detrimental to your content overall. In such cases, you might find that 30-second video content is much more suitable.
30-second video content is ideal for specific purposes. The brevity, for one, makes them perfect for explaining an easy concept, while doubling as a means to increase brand awareness. Because of this, 30-second videos are an excellent fit for social media platforms, where they can be shared with a vast audience.
Generally speaking, people on social media platforms aren’t too keen on long videos, meaning 30-second videos are perfect for such an audience. Creating videos for this audience will be greatly beneficial, as the potential for increased visibility is immense. But, this is easier said than done, as 30-second video content isn’t the easiest to create.
Why use short videos?
It’s tough to pack all the essential parts of your brand into just 30 seconds. Such a timeframe leaves room for roughly 100 words, and deciding what to leave on the cutting room floor is difficult. This is especially true for young brands, as they often feel as though more detail means more interest.
This couldn’t be farther from the truth. In our internet age, a long attention span has become a rare sight indeed. So many distractions exist online, from music to podcasts, and they often get in the way of devoting our time to any one thing. In creating short videos, your audience won’t be so quick to succumb to the temptation of whatever is next. Instead, they will hear you out, taking in your message and perhaps even propagating it.
Compare this to long-form content. While it is certainly fitting for some purposes, the aforementioned podcasts being one example, long-form content tends to be difficult for a large audience to engage with meaningfully. It’s difficult to seize an audience’s attention, even more so to command it for an extended period of time. Once you lose them, they’ll leave your video and move on to another from the near-infinite sea of content online.
This is the inherent advantage to short-form content, specifically 30-second videos; you can hook your audience and keep their attention for the entire video. This ensures your message is understood, and if you post to social media platforms, is even promoted by your audience.
How to create an effective 30-second video
While the benefits of 30-second video content are plain to see, creating them isn’t quite so straightforward. Although it can be difficult, we want to give you a few tips that can make the whole process a bit easier.
Keep it brief
The main idea behind 30-second video content is brevity. You should aim to pass on your message quickly, and with entertainment at its core. To accomplish this, you should keep two factors in mind – low word count and a concise, direct script.
We briefly mentioned word count earlier. For 30 second videos, you should create a script that does not exceed 100 words, preferably one around 80. Admittedly, this is a difficult task to achieve. This constraint doesn’t allow you to say everything you’d like, nor does it allow for tangents or non-critical points. As such, you’ll need to cut away everything that doesn’t serve to express your message. In the end, this will be to your benefit, as your audience will be left with a clear, understandable message, rather than one obscured by fluff. Besides, wouldn’t you rather have a video that is fully watched and understood by your audience, as opposed to one they drop halfway through?
Word count is only half of it, however. You need to consider the content of your video too. Your video should be targeting a particular audience, one with particular wants and needs. Your first thought should be how your brand meets these needs, or how it solves a problem. In doing so, you will be implicitly telling your audience why they should choose you, provided your solution isn’t to reinvent the wheel.
While this all may seem impossible to do in 30 seconds at first, give it some thought. 30 seconds isn’t long, of course, but you can harness visuals to bolster your message. Show data, show graphics, or simply be entertaining. By merging the benefits of narration and animation, your message will be well received.
Make thorough plans
Unsurprisingly, great 30 second videos require intensive planning. Without a good plan, you are likely to exceed the strict time limitation, or omit important points. To ensure you don’t fall into this trap, making a detailed storyboard is a great idea.
By creating a storyboard, you can see a visual representation of what each frame of your video expresses. More importantly, you can see all the information held in each frame and each second of your video. Every second is valuable; you cannot afford to waste your time with pointless frames or tangential topics.
The same can be said for your script. It should work hand in hand with your storyboard, leaving anything that doesn’t serve the main thrust of your video behind. If planned correctly, your 30-second video will be both entertaining and informative.
30 second videos aren’t easy to make, but in some cases, it is a difficulty that must be endured. 30-second videos offer unique benefits, ones that complement some marketing goals better than any other method can.
Because of this, you should strongly consider using 30-second videos for your brand. In our digital world, where social media plays an integral part, short-form video is king. In many cases, any other form will land your content skipped by your audience, in favor of something more immediately stimulating. Provided you keep it brief and plan well, you’ll be creating 30-second videos in no time flat.