Long Videos on TikTok Get More Views for Top Media Publishers: Report

A new report from Tubular Labs, a company specializing in trends and insights across social video, found that longer TikTok videos (those that were over 5 minutes in length) from the top four US broadcast, cable, and radio publishers had the highest average views on the platform in 2023. This suggests the platform has been prioritizing long videos over short ones, at least for media and entertainment accounts.

Charts from Tubular Labs report showing uploads per video length and views per video length from top US media publishers.

Tubular Labs

TikTok has progressively increased the maximum length of its videos, from 15 seconds when it first launched to 10 minutes in early 2022.

In February 2023, the platform also launched the Creator Rewards program, which pays users for the views they receive on videos longer than one minute. The initiative, once called Creativity Program Beta, became available to all creators in March 2024. It’s been lucrative for many creators. As early as August 2023, creators told Business Insider they were earning tens of thousands of dollars per month from it.

The introduction of the program has incentivized creators to post longer videos. And the viewers are responding. TikTok released data in early March saying users spent 50% of their time watching longer content — i.e. videos over a minute. The data also said viewership of longer videos had increased nearly 40% over the previous six months.

A good case study is the recent viral 68-part series “Who TF Did I Marry?” published by ReesaTeesa. The Tubular Labs report found that the average video length in the series was 8 minutes (for a total of 546 minutes), and each video had an average of 1.2 million views and 105,000 engagements.

Audiences were even more engaged with the conversation surrounding ReesaTeesa’s series than with her own channel. Engagement for the hashtag #whotfdidimarry was 2.2% higher than ReesaTeesa’s personal engagement, according to the report.

In a related takeaway, the report found that media and entertainment publishers were leaning into social video: they posted 57% more videos on TikTok in 2023, which resulted in 53% more views.

The report defines media and entertainment creators as accounts that are not brands, influencers, or aggregators of content. That means creators like Cocomelon, T-Series, LADBible, and Toys and Colors, as well as mainstream media companies.

Chart from Tubular Labs report showing 2022 vs 2023 video views for media and entertainment creators.

Tubular Labs

YouTube has long been a go-to social platform for media publishers due to its landscape format and easy adaptability from TV. The effort seems to be paying off. Uploads on the platform only increased by 5% in 2023 compared to the previous year, but views grew organically by 118%, from 59 billion in January 2023 to 124 billion in December, per the report.

“Traditional media and entertainment companies utilize social video as a key promotional tool, and during last year’s entertainment work stoppages, many leaned into archive content to keep engaging with viewers,” said John Cassillo, an analyst at media-analytics group TVREV. “For digital-native media companies, these hurdles also became an opportunity to fill programming voids for audiences with both long- and short-form content.”

Chart from Tubular Labs showing YouTube views by media and entertainment creators in 2023.

Tubular Labs

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