IGTV and Chill?
IGTV could cut a new niche in the digital video and long-form market for Australia. But will we ever think to 'IGTV and chill'?
As one particularly uninspiring presentation I attended this week said, traditional consumption is on the decline, while new formats – including digital video – are rising. And in fact, according to a recent report, will exceed traditional viewing habits.
That’s not the big deal.
The big deal is where will audiences head for long-form content? Is IGTV finally going to solve what YouTube was trying to achieve through YouTube Red (still can’t believe that name stuck).
Let’s break IGTV down and look at the good and the bad. But who cares what I think - I’ve spoken to Clare Moyna, our social media manager here at Red Engine SCC, for her thoughts.
• Mobile-everything: Anything that is mobile-first is a good thing. That means vertical or squares.
• Discovery: Recommendations on interest is a gold to anyone who enjoys getting lost in a YouTube hole or a weekend of Netflix. Also, no need to find new channels, just based on who you’re already following.
• Built-in authors: There’s no slow burn with this platform. All the creators are already making shit!
But again, is this a big deal?
Well, we think so. The Instagram integration of IGTV means they’re forcing awareness and adoption in a fairly non-evasive way. The format too, will be better understood as a natural evolution of the app.
Where it might not be water-to-wine is the fact that who really wants to watch long-form content on their phone for that long? Well, how long is long? I asked Clare.
Long-form content is relative to the platform it lives on. A long form video is a video with a longer duration than it usually would be for its typical distribution channel. There is no universal rule for exactly how long a video has to be before it earns the designation of long-form. With Facebook pushing the six-second video ad, anything above 15 seconds could be considered long form.
Long-form video provides more opportunity for relationship and community building. For certain industries there is no better way to communicate with their customer. For B2B long-form video allows the time to address complicated business challenges and issues in an engaging way.
Long form video also allows everyone to be an educator no matter what the industry; tutorials and reviews are the most watched on YouTube. Tutorials can be anything from perfecting the perfect winged eyeliner to advanced chemical engineering. If your brand has a unique story to tell and has something interesting to offer, it could be the way to go.
For my money – and well, time – I’m not interested in longer form content on my mobile outside of trying to continue my weekend Netflix binge onto the train carriage. But if there’s a content creator I like, or an expert I’d love utility from, or pure entertainment then sure.
But most importantly, this is going to be a chance for brands to once again understand long-form, branded content – and that has to be a plus.
Think about media distribution. You’d be hard-pressed to not find someone watching videos on any rush hour commute. If your content distribution is mostly social, tailoring your media distribution to prime video watching times such as evening and morning commutes will result in much higher video views as people are happy to be distracted by your stories.
Use long- and short-form together. If you want people to pay attention to your long form video then it should look like content and not like an ad.
Rather than including brand messaging in the first five seconds to allow for drop-offs, make the first five seconds more engaging so that more people will actually want to watch for longer. This will maximise the effectiveness and value of your long-form video.
However don’t ignore those with micro attention spans. Create short cut downs that can work as teasers or ‘snackable content’. YouTube has rolled this out with six-second bumpers combined with longer video ad placements.
What do you guys think?
Jye Smith is general manager and strategy director at Red Engine SCC