October 10, 2014
The golden rule
How long should a video testimonial be? The golden rule about the length of video is to err on the side of caution and keep it short. Most people will tell you that 30 seconds or less is ideal, otherwise you risk pushing the attention span of your viewers.
30 seconds gives your client enough time to identify themselves and really hit on the one topic they’re going to discuss. If they go on beyond that time-frame, not only are you potentially losing the focus of your viewers, but the testimonial might begin to drag on, or end up with a rambling quality.
Sticking with a short time limit can be best all around because it cuts down on any discomfort that your clients may feel when faced with recording what they have to say.
Breaking the golden rule
As always, rules are made to be broken. In general, it’s good to stick with shorter testimonials, for all the reasons listed above. But are there exceptions? Absolutely.
Usually, a given testimonial will focus on one aspect of what your brand is great at. Going further, it focuses on a very narrow aspect instead of a broad concept, which would take longer to discuss. But what if you’re looking to highlight a particular customer service interaction, something that might take longer than those precious 30 seconds to convey to viewers?
Time to break the rules. If you want to have testimonials that cover a lot of ground, you can give yourself room to play around with length. That doesn’t mean every video should be 3 minutes long so clients can shower you with rambling praise. It means that some stories might take longer than others, and that’s okay.
Another way to look at rules about length
Video testimonials should only be as long as they need to be. In most cases, that’ll be on the shorter side. But it’s okay to feature testimonials that are a little longer, if they’re hitting on points that are going to be of interest to viewers.
So, while there technically are rules about this sort of thing, it’s okay to play it by ear. Use your judgement, and get the kind of testimonials that are worth your viewers time.