Want us to follow up? Fill the form

Thank you! Your submission has been received!
Something went wrong while submitting the form.


Three reasons why your B2B video ads should be shorter

As a short fellow, I love the idea of short being cool. But alas, this article is about making your video ads shorter – not an ode to short men (although we are cool - and live longer!).

Let’s break down three reasons why your B2B video ads should be shorter.

The game of percentages

Let’s look at two possible spot lengths:

  • :15 second ad
  • :60 second ad

If we look at each second of the ad as a percentage of potential branding, each second you watch the :15 second spot is worth 7% and each second of the :60 second spot is worth 2%.

Using this math, the :15 second spot is inherently more efficient than the :60 second spot. It also means if someone stops watching the :15 second ad after 10 seconds they’ve seen 67% of it, but only 17% of the :60 second ad.

Does this mean you should extrapolate this insight and make :01 second ads so they watch 100% of your ad the second they see the ad? No. There is a minimum length for a human to even understand what’s going on (probably :05 seconds minimum).

The takeaway here is the shorter the spot, the more likely the chances you can make a brand impression before someone clicks away, scrolls past or otherwise ignores your ad.

It’s easier to make short ads

From a very practical point of view, it’s way easier to write, produce and edit short B2B video ads than longer ones. That gives you two big benefits: you can make more of them, and you can take more creative risks.

Making more spots gives you more chances to test. It takes the pressure off of any one ad to perform and disperses it amongst the fleet of ads.

This allows you to take a barbell approach to creative. You can make some of them safe and some risky – and everywhere in-between.

To borrow from Rory Sutherland, if you only could eat one food for the rest of your life, the best choice is a potato. It has all the essential nutrients you need to live. But if you could eat 10 foods for the rest of your life, the potato would probably not even be on the list. Since the nutrient lifting is now dispersed amongst 10 foods, you wouldn’t need it.

Making more ads allows you to avoid “potato” ads.

Short ads fit in your prospects’ life

The average person spends 3 hours, 54 minutes on their phone every day. And on average we pick up our phones 58 times a day. That means the average session is about 4 minutes.

That’s 240 seconds.

Ask yourself, how does your 2 minute video ad fit in someone’s 4 minute window to consume as much content as possible before going back to work or doing whatever they were supposed to be doing?

The sheer logistics of fitting your piece of content into an available viewing window is kind of daunting when you look at it.

So make it easier to actually fit in someone’s life. Make your video ad shorter!

What ever happened to the customer journey?

You may be saying to yourself, “But how will we fit everything we need to say into a short ad?”

The answer is simple. Instead of thinking of your ads as meals having to say everything in one sitting, think of them as breadcrumbs, leading prospects to more breadcrumbs before the final destination. Your ads don’t need to convert someone right away. All they need to do is lead a prospect to the next breadcrumb.

By taking a breadcrumb approach, we’re actually getting back to the whole idea of the customer journey. When you take a journey do you park your car at the peak of the mountain or do you park at the base and then walk up the mountain, step by step?

Start making your B2B video ads shorter and you’ll see the results – shortly.





Picture of Guy bauer, founder of umault

Guy has been making commercial videos for over 20 years and is the author of “Death to the Corporate Video: A Modern Approach that Works.” He started the agency in 2010 after a decade of working in TV, film and radio. He’s been losing hair and gaining weight ever since.

linkedin logo