Wick Communications

Try an Insta-video

In Video on 21 Jun 2013 at 7:35 am

Screen Shot 2013-06-20 at 10.30.50 AM

The battle for your short attention span has begun. If you don’t play along on video, you may number yourself among the casualties.

On Thursday, the folks at Instagram (and by extension, Facebook) announced a video feature for their extremely popular social media photo application. It was clearly a response to Twitter’s wildly popular Vine video app, which has a reported 13 million users in only a few months on the market.

If you have a smartphone, you probably already have Instagram. It’s that app that lets you snap square photos and use a variety of filters before sharing them with the world. If you haven’t done so since Thursday’s announcement, you have to update your app to get the new feature. It allows you to shoot 15-second videos that you can then run through those Instagram filters and share via Twitter or Facebook. I guarantee this means your Facebook news feed will soon be filled with short videos of your friends at the swimming pool, eating dinner and goodness knows what else. If you are a regular on Twitter, you have undoubtedly already seen Vine video links on your feed.

Instagram founder Kevin Systrom told Verge magazine recently why his operation was comparatively slow to see the light on video. “I think it’s a combination of data speed limitations and the time it takes to watch a video,” he said not so long ago. “Videos are a very difficult medium to be good at, and also a difficult medium to consume quickly.”

Vine changed all that.

So what does this mean for us? As I said about Vine earlier this year, I think these short video apps can be useful. At the Half Moon Bay Review, we’ve used it in the past to share the scene from graduation ceremonies or to show off our still photos, among other things. And there are examples on the Web of much, much more sophisticated uses of the stop-action feature. Vine is a loop, meaning the six-second snatches of video repeat. Advertisers are quickly catching on to ways to produce catchy, inexpensive, viral and repeating video to sell their products. Fast Company reported on an agent who says “Vine talent” can earn a living by producing as few as 20 six-second videos a year. Think of what your own advertisers could do in these formats.

Clay

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