What is the Future of Video?
So what is the future of video? I am talking in any context, marketing, entertainment, news, or as a means of communication.
We hear from pundits all the time and have seen for ourselves how powerful video is. It is through its engagement of course.
The Millennial Issue
Have you noticed an entire 2 generations watch nothing but various forms of video? On the UK version of “I am a celebrity” one of the questions for treats asked “according to a recent survey how may children want to become you tubers, 65 or 75%?” the answer was 75%; incidentally the term youtuber entered the Oxford English Dictionary in 2016. But are these trends sustainable? Will they get disrupted in some way? How long before we settle into a new norm? I detect in the kids I meet a definite pattern, they start with YouTube and I am sure prank, personality and makeup videos will continue. That said they do all graduate to Netflix, craving the long-form of “Riverdale” or “Stranger Things”.
That craving is driven by comments and conversations on insta or snap chat etc. I think this evolution has a long way to go. But the word CONVERSATION is for me key to the future of video in any context. Kids talk in their social groups they work progressively, discovering content and sharing it. They may well find a snippet of information and actually experience a product physically; clothes, makeup, a piece of long-form entertainment. All the engagement comes from the conversations these social groups have. We live in a recommendation society.
This is the Future of Video
If you accept my observations it follows that in my opinion, the function of video is conversation. We have to do everything to drive the conversation. This conversation should drive those talking to action. That action should compel people to experience the subject of the conversation themselves. It could be long-form video, on Netflix. A new lipstick or fashion item and actually purchase. It could be a new bit of technology. But the conversation drives everything.
Across the land advertisers have lost their audience and the agencies have lost the advertising dollars of the brands. As an audience, we are now more cynical and sceptical than ever. We see Emma Willis or Davina McCall with a paid for Instagram post and we don’t trust it. We see our friends, or friends of friends talking about the same thing and we get hooked. The agencies that survive will be the ones that can start wider conversations. The World Economic Forum are an example of how to provide great conversation starters.
Viral Video is Dead
We all want people to watch our video. Viral Video is the goal, or is it? The very nature of viral video is that it’s a one hit wonder. What we should seek is a loyal regular audience. Sure that Audience is likely to change quickly but if they move they must move with you. The skills of building and audience or more accurately consistently finding an audience, this is or should be the new goal, of every agency.
So,What is the Future of Video
The future of video is great. That said it’s a changing landscape. Adaptability is the key to the future. The beauty of disruption is its unpredictability. The one thing we can probably be certain about. Stories always have a beginning middle and end. Conversation will always require a starting point, a mediator but not necessarily a conclusion. An open end often means the conversation carries on. Creators will always make content, the way they tell their stories will change. The technology they use will evolve. But as is always, content is king. The future is bright.