How long should your live streams be?

Statistically speaking, the recommended length for live videos should be at least 20 minutes. This is if you want to maximize your audience retention and reach as many viewers as you can. On average, the 20 minute mark indicates the highest level of attention from your audience you will receive.

However, why should there be a predetermined length for your own live videos?

Any restrictions on live videos that we may have are imposed by ourselves, and assuming that we should always adhere to a set time limit reflects some inhibition on our part.

When in doubt, go with what you are comfortable with

The 20 minute recommendation is a guideline. More importantly, the length of your live video should depend on what you feel comfortable with.

Are you comfortable with having an audience to talk to for long periods at a time? Or do you personally prefer your live videos to be more concise?

Live videos on social media like Facebook, Instagram and Youtube all vary widely in length. Some people start and end their live videos in a brief 5 minutes. Others host their live sessions for 15 to 20 minutes. They can even go up to 2 hours, as some have done.

Rely on your intuition, motivation and business needs

Your purpose for using the platform will affect the length of your live session. This depends on your personal motivations and the needs of your business.

What do you plan to use your live session for? 

You may be selling a product, or you may be conducting a Q&A session for your customers. Length of the session will vary as it proceeds depending on the people’s needs in real time.

No matter the length, feel free to keep chatting with your viewers depending on how many people are online. When selling a product, you might have people viewing your live video and making purchases in the later stages of your live session. It’s fine and encouraged to keep your live session going until you complete whatever sales you have in progress.

Similarly for a Q&A session, your live videos can continue for as long as you wish to address the questions that your customers have for you. Rely on your intuition and business needs.

Of course, the longer your live session lasts, the better it will be. As mentioned earlier, when you keep your live video going past 20 minutes, the algorithm works in your favour to maximize the number of people watching your live video. Beyond this guideline, it’s all up to you!

If you can go for a long period of time, do it. This gives you a longer timeframe for people to come in and check you out on your live video.

Frankly speaking, if you are especially talkative and enjoy holding long conversations, this is the best time to do business for you. Feel free to talk for as long as you want in your live sessions!

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