Research

Longer Videos Are OK for Millennials

While shorter is better when it comes to videos for some audiences, the rapidity of Snapchat-like videos (which limits a recording to 10 seconds) apparently begins to wear on viewers as they age. A recent survey by a company that sells screen recording and video editing applications found that Millennials — those who are 25 to 34 years old — have a higher tolerance for longer videos. In fact, they expressed their preference for videos longer than six minutes far and above those that are less than a minute in length.

In May 2016 TechSmith ran a video viewing survey to understand video viewing behaviors and preferences among U.S. end users.

These broader findings surfaced in the results:

  • Among all age groups queried, Millennials had the smallest percentage of respondents who stopped watching a video without finishing it.
  • However, this demographic also had the highest portion of people who stopped watching a video without finishing it because they had to do something else, though the main reasons they cited for dumping a video viewing were "boredom" and "not getting expected information."
  • They're also a distracted bunch. Millennials least likely among all age groups to focus solely on watching videos without multitasking.
  • Millennials also had the highest percentage among all respondents who chose to switch devices when watching a video.
  • Six in 10 Millennials have provided feedback on the videos they watch; and more than one in 10 (13 percent) have connected directly to video creators through e-mail or voice channels.
  • The three most important characteristics of the videos they choose to watch all relate to relevancy: They're genuinely interested in the topic; the video content matches their needs; and the video contains pertinent content.

"At TechSmith, we recognize that video has become an integral component in communication and learning. In fact, we recently conducted a viewer study to better understand people's viewing behaviors and preferences," said TechSmith CEO Wendy Hamilton. "The results provided useful insights, including [that] 98 percent of U.S. Millennials actually prefer videos that are longer than six minutes."

About the Author

Dian Schaffhauser is a senior contributing editor for 1105 Media's education publications THE Journal and Campus Technology. She can be reached at dian@dischaffhauser.com or on Twitter @schaffhauser.

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