If you look at your social media feed with marketing in mind, you’ll notice a wide range of post styles and lengths. Which might make you wonder about your social media strategy and whether you’re hitting the ideal length for social media posts.
Do the algorithms have a minimum or maximum word count? Is shorter or longer content better for your audience? If you’re looking for magic answers to these and other questions, we have some bad news. While, yes, there is some data available for things like word count and engagement, the ultimate answer about the ideal length for social media posts is: it depends.
It depends on your audience, the platform, your time and budget, and your social media metrics. Keep these things in mind as you consider the length of your social media posts.
Write for your audience
We’ve talked about how getting to know your target audience is a key part of creating your marketing strategy. Once you know who your audience is, you can write for your target audience specifically. What matters to them? How can you help them? What sort of tone is best for engaging your audience? Knowing your audience can also impact the length of your posts.
Know the limits for each platform
Twitter has a clearly defined character limit, while Facebook really doesn’t. Yet Facebook will shorten posts and ask your audience to click to see more. While you can write longer posts, your audience may not click through to read the rest of it. Know what you want to say and how to format it for different platforms so that your audience sees the important part of your message first.
Consider your time and budget
Longer social media content may take longer to plan and write. Do you have the time to write it or the budget to outsource it? If shorter posts are what you can manage consistently, stick with those — though keep in mind that sometimes it takes as much time to write clear, concise content than longer content. You can always re-evaluate when you have more time in your schedule, or more money in your budget down the road.
Evaluate which posts perform best
Test longer versus shorter content with your audience and see what happens! Schedule some long posts and some shorter posts on similar topics related to your business over a few months, and then evaluate the metrics and see if engagement rates were different between short and long posts. You can pull analytics directly from the social media tools or from your scheduling tool if you use one.
Social media algorithms are constantly changing, but audience engagement remains an important factor in most of them. Keep that in mind as you consider ideal length for social media posts and evaluate what works best for your audience!
If you need help developing a social media strategy, reach out to the StoryPath team to schedule an introductory call.