With computers getting faster and faster, the old rules to passwords are being updated. Also remember that hackers can use multiple machines to try to hack a password, so having a longer password will make it harder for them to hack.
7 characters can be hacked in about 14 minutes, while 11 characters takes 4000 years. Each new letter increasingly adds to how long it will take to hack your password.
Swapping a few characters for special characters can help, but nothing like making your password longer.