Right off I want to say I am thinking particularly about charities and community groups using social media, but of course it could apply to almost any organisation. [I should also add that I train charities and community groups to use video, so this is a special interest of mine.]
OK. Let’s start with a coupIe of eye catching recent headlines about video
“300 hours of video are uploaded to You Tube every minute.” To put this into perspective, Hollywood in 2013 released 622 feature films. At an average length of two hours this means Hollywood produced just 1,244 hours of content across a whole year!
“Facebook Takes Another Step In Its Bid To Replace The Need For YouTube.” Add to this another headline from Business Insider which stated that for brands on Facebook a photo is now the worst way to get people to see your posts, and the importance of video is clear.
People are not only seeing more videos, but there’s a battle going on between the giants of social media to get you to use and share video, and those that do are more likely to be on the winning side.
It’s worth adding at this point that Twitter recently updated their Smartphone app to allow you to shoot video from within the app itself. That may seem a small change to some, but it underscores the importance the social media platform places on getting people sharing video within a tweet.
If you haven’t seen the new Twitter video feature @UKAirscape recently ran this demo:
And Twitter’s own Lewis Wiltshire at Media Trust’s most recent conference underlined the importance of video to engagement on Twitter:
So what does this mean? It means that your PR/digital/comms strategy needs to include video, because video helps to increase engagement with your followers on social media. In turn this is going to have an impact on the skills you need your comms staff to have. We tend to favour the written word, it’s what we’re used to, it’s what we learn at school. But simply writing press releases/tweets/facebook posts is not enough, now you have to be able to create videos and turn them round quickly. Here’s an example of how King’s College London’s press team are using video.
And by video I don’t just mean high end, beautifully crafted videos that have clearly taken time and thought to produce. I mean the smartphone, see Twitter above, and the quick impromptu interview or 30 second piece from a project that you can share to social media within minutes of capture. In turn this means understanding how you can get the most out of your phone, a tool that I often refer to as the Swiss Army penknife of community media: it does it all, video, photos, audio, and it does it quickly.
OK, so this is why I think you should use video and it’s the first of three posts about creating and using video. The next will be on using your smartphone, and the third will look at YouTube.