By Sarah Lokitis
Jun 27, 2013
More Articles by Sarah
We were recently asked:
What opinions do you have about the recent Instagram video feature, other popular short form video apps…and the impact they’ll have for businesses?
Online video is a great way to engage with your audience, and the success of YouTube and Vimeo demonstrates that people really love watching video. In fact, 85% of the US Internet audience watch videos online! Attention spans online are shorter and you may agree with me that it’s sometimes easier to watch a video than read an article. YouTube says that “over 6 billion hours of video are watched each month…that’s almost an hour for every person on Earth, and 50% more than last year”! With video trends on the rise and new ways to mark up video in search results, it only makes sense that video would be the next big trend in social media. The battle between Vine and Instagram is the most recent example demonstrating the growth in social video sharing:
You may have heard of Vine – the video mobile service, owned by Twitter. Like Twitter, Vine places a cap on the length of the post, begging you to be creative with how you use the time. A lot of stop motion Vine videos have been posted, capturing the creativity Twitter means to inspire. Vine is set up for looping auto-play and lets you share on Facebook and Twitter and since you can embed it the videos to your site or blog may receive SEO benefit. See Dove’s first Vine post below:
Instagram (or insta-video as I like to refer to it!) allows for 15 seconds of videos (with image stabilization) with the filters we have all grown to love on the original Instagram. There is the ability to share the videos on Facebook, Twitter, Tumblr, Flickr, email, and Foursquare and also tag a location. Instagram won’t yet allow you to embed videos to your site, but you are given a profile that can help you own your branded search results, which is another search optimization technique. Here is a still from Lululemon on Instagram – just click the image to check out their video:
Instagram’s video addition has received mixed reviews:
The Good: “What makes it [Instagram video] arguably more valuable for brands is Instagram’s existing bigger user base, especially for brands who have built Instagram followers, and the ability to apply filters,” says Mark Holden, head of futures at media planning and buying agency Arena. “15 seconds also starts to take it into advertising-length formats, so it opens the possibility of putting a bit more craft into video in a way that we can already with Vine, but could grow into a tool for making reactive advertising that could be distributed beyond Facebook or social media.”
The Bad: “Instagram is a yearbook of our most memorable moments, not because they’re the moments worth remembering, but because they’re the moments worth projecting and sharing. …Video, at least the amateurish footage I shot, is the antithesis of that fantasy.”
In a recent Search Engine Watch post, Unruly COO and co-founder, Sarah Wood, said:
“Mobile video consumption tripled in 2012; video is the fastest growing ad format worldwide. Brand marketers who are serious about their content marketing strategy understand that there’s more to social video success than a YouTube view count. The social video ecosystem is developing rapidly to meet changing consumer habits and brands can now embrace a multitude of platforms across a fragmented media landscape to reach and engage their audiences wherever they’re discovering and sharing videos.”
I believe that both video tools will continue to flourish and brands will continue to integrate them into their social strategy. As Michelle Doty explained earlier this month, with the convergence of social networking sites – more video and more hashtags – businesses need to decide whether video will fit into their greater social media marketing and content strategies. What tools they use doesn’t really matter, but these video tools allow for businesses that don’t have thousands of dollars to throw at video creation a way to engage with their customers and provide behind the scenes looks into a day at their company, a launch of a new product, etc. Sure, people will choose the medium they like best and maybe even talk trash about the other, but as content creation is increasingly the way to grow and engage with your fan base to ultimately generate leads, these tools are here to stay.
What do you think about Vine and Instagram? Are you using these platforms for your business? I’d love to see what you’ve created! I’m on Twitter @Lokitis or feel free to comment below!