Best Lengths for Social Media Posts

Ideal infographic

Best Lengths for Social Media Posts

Do you know the best lengths for your email subject lines, tweets, Facebook statuses, blog titles, and other social media, to connect better with your friends and followers?

Buffer and SumAll recently released an infographic that creatively illustrates the best lengths for your email subject lines, tweets, Facebook statuses, blog titles, and additional social media posts. I’ve only captured a small part of the infographic in the above image. I don’t expect you to be able to read this small print either; right-click on the photo (or click here) to see the full-size infographic in another tab. Click the infographic to enlarge it.

What crazy numbers! No way could anyone realistically remember them all… and these recommendations may only last until the latest technology comes along or until changes are made to the sites.

Summary Suggestions for Social Media

Buffer explains the reasons behind these recommendations in their blog post, Infographic: The Optimal Length for Every Social Media Update and More. Here’s my summary for you in alphabetical order (including a chart at the end of the post), however, I suggest you look in the original article for more specific explanations about the social media of interest to you. I’ve included data from Orbit Media Studios which is referenced in the notes at the end of this article.

I thought 1600 words for a blog post excessively long, so I checked out some other opinions and found this number is to help with ranking. If that is partially what you’re after, then write longer posts. For me, I write for my audience with about 500 – 600 words as a goal. When a post looks like it’ll be too long, I break it into a series of posts. If you write light-hearted, inspirational, or travel blogs, then longer posts may be a norm for you already and will help your blog become more visible over time.

The first two words of your email subject line are your most important. People are skimming their inbox and may not read much past those first two words, especially if they’re using their mobile phone to check their email.

Shorter is better for your posts in your Facebook status. In my opinion, if your message is very compelling, you could do an occasional longer status. For instance, your friends would expect some explanation if you reported on a major family event; they’ll want to know the story behind your news.

The advice for SlideShare (or PowerPoint) was conflicting in the article. I certainly wouldn’t continue clicking through a 60-slide presentation online, so I disagree with that high number. I think someone might be willing to spend six minutes on a SlideShare online presentation and that  Guy Kawasaki’s 10/20/30 rule was a good guideline for a live slide presentation:

  • 10 slides
  • 20 minutes
  • 30 point font

Tweets should fall in the 71-to-100 character range in order to make it easy for your followers to re-tweet your content.

The article concludes with recommendations for image sizes for Pinterest.

You may find these numbers don’t quite match your site’s statistics. If you want to, check to see if these suggestions work for your readers and followers. If you’re like me, however, you’re too busy to mine your data and are more than happy to trust in guidelines that should help you be more effective with social media.

Interestingly, the articles I referenced for this post didn’t follow the blog title length guideline that they wrote about and yet I still found these articles. “Breaking the rules” doesn’t jeopardize your posts, but following them, in general, should help you.

What one or two new habits will you try for your social media?

Social Media
Blog meta description 155 characters
Blog post 1,600 words
Blog title 6 words
Blog title tag 55 characters
Comment length 12 – 15 words
Domain name 8 characters
Email subject 28 – 39 characters
Facebook 40 characters
Google+ 60 characters
Hashtags 6 characters
LinkedIn 25 words
Paragraph length 3 – 4 lines
Paragraph width 40 – 55 characters
Pinterest 200 characters
SlideShare 6 minutes
Twitter 100 characters
YouTube 3 minutes


2 thoughts on “Best Lengths for Social Media Posts

  1. Hugely helpful! Awesome information. So it begs the question–should I change the name of my blog? What the heck is blog meta? Is it time to sit down with you and revamp? It’s been two years, Sus! Do you believe it? Two years since you started me down this path. Some days I’m so grateful–others, truly, not so much. But I miss you a ton. We need to get together!


    1. Hi, Dayle! I’ve been travelling through the land of MPD. That’s why you haven’t seen much of me. Don’t worry about blog meta, but yes, let’s get together and also see why you have this love / hate relationship with your blog. 🙂


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