November 06, 2015
/ by Ann Feeney
Video used to be optional in communication, but now it’s vital. Whether your organization creates content or partners with existing content creators, these are the trends that are shaping your communication future.
Cisco forecasts that by 2019, video will make up 80 percent of all consumer Internet traffic, up from 64 percent in 2014. They also forecast that every second, more than 1 million videos will be transmitted across the Internet.
Some quick statistics:
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Just like television, most people turn to video for entertainment, lifestyle information and news, but they’re also interested in learning and open to being moved or inspired to act.
Video influencers can seem more direct and relatable than television and movie stars, especially if they take time to interact with viewers in the comments. Organizations with complex products or services can become a valuable resource on YouTube, especially if they make their videos easy to find with good descriptions and metadata.
At the same time, advertorial campaigns with messages can draw millions of views. Always’ Like a Girl campaign, which counters the use of “like a girl” as an insult, created several videos. The two highest-volume YouTube videos have a combined approximately 100 million views. Videos for Dove’s Real Beauty campaign, which emphasizes realistic standards for beauty, have approximately 66 million viewers for the 3-minute version and 6 million for the 6-minute version.
In the nonprofit sector, the ALS Ice Bucket challenge was tremendously successful at raising awareness of ALS and, though to a lesser extent, at fundraising. Dan Savage’s It Gets Better Project tells the stories of thousands of LGBTQ people through its videos. Thousands of people and organizations, ranging from Barack Obama to Laverne Cox to the New Zealand Defense Force, provided messages of support. In more direct public education, targeted to those without affordable access to good education, the nonprofit Khan Academy has raised millions for its YouTube educational videos, which provide free instruction in math, science and technology.
Almost six out of 10 mobile users watch video daily, with the highest proportion in Latin America and the smallest in South Asia. While users are more likely to view shorter videos, 36 percent watch videos lasting five minutes or longer, at least once daily.
Mobile viewers are most likely to watch music or comedy videos: 49 percent of viewers report that they’ve seen at least one in the previous three months, for both categories. Movie trailers, with 41 percent reporting they’ve seen at least one over the last month, are close behind. Music, comedy and trailers are all vivid, self-contained and an ideal distraction while waiting for something.
While YouTube is vital for spreading most video content, smaller, specialized video platforms can play an important role. In addition, social networks are vital distribution points.
Vine‘s short format works particularly well for visual comedy, so it’s no surprise that all top ten Vine creators (as of August 2015) produce comic shorts. Vimeo was designed as a film platform and promotes itself most aggressively to professional and amateur filmmakers. Also setting it apart from the crowd, it relies on subscriptions rather than advertising revenue. As of November, 2014, it had 170 million viewers and 25 million members.
Facebook is the only platform where news producers (NowThis News, AJ+, part of Al Jazeera, and the Huffington Post) are among the top 10 content providers.
On Twitter, 82 percent say that they watch video on that platform, almost entirely from mobile devices. Seventy percent of users say they discover video content from timelines (only 11 percent say that they always or usually search for video, compared to 63 percent saying they use search on YouTube). Among video watchers on Twitter, 64 percent say they would like to see more breaking news on Twitter, with 54 percent saying they’d like to see more sports clips and 50 percent wanting more clips from television shows. Fewer than half say that they’d like to see more celebrity video (45 percent), other users (40 percent) or from brands (37 percent).
Images: Rego Korosi, Republic of Korea, Blake Patterson, Esther Vargas (Creative Commons)
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