Video content is becoming a bigger part of the in-app experience across nearly all social platforms, including Instagram, TikTok, Twitter, LinkedIn, and even Pinterest.
In 2018, an average of 6.75 hours of video were consumed per week, compared to 5.75 hours in 2017 and 4.28 hours in 2016. So the growth is exponential – adding up a full hour each year that passes.
And the reason behind it?
The simplest answer is that video content is often more eye-catching than a static photo. We are lazy and we do not want to make an effort when scrolling through social networks – especially when we get in to disconnect from our surroundings, to rest or to clear our minds.
As for the scientific basis for this, research shows that the human brain processes visual content differently than text. Our brains retain only 10% of what we read, 20% of what we hear, and almost 80% of what we see. Visual content is also processed 60,000 times faster – which means that if this article were an infographic, you would have finished it about two minutes ago!
Marcel Just, director of the Center for Cognitive Brain Imaging at Carnegie Mellon University explains why:
“Processing print isn’t something the human brain was built for. The printed word is a human artifact. It’s very convenient and it’s worked very well for us for 5,000 years, but it’s an invention of human beings. By contrast Mother Nature has built into our brain our ability to see the visual world and interpret it.”
In other words, we were biologically designed to react to visual stimuli and communicate through them. As such, the growth of video consumption on social media is increasing exponentially and continues to grow. In 2019, 80% of internet traffic was video, and by 2022, various studies predict that this rate will rise to almost 85%. And that’s just a glimpse of what’s to come.
Impact of the pandemic
According to a global study carried out by Kantar Insights, media consumption during the pandemic is overwhelming – there has been a 70% increase in web browsing, with 61% more social network usage.
The report shows that during the pandemic, people expanded the ways of staying connected. The search for information, entertainment and communication became a priority and digital platforms became an ally. Restrictions and lockdowns have led to the rise of new video formats, and among them live streaming seems to have taken the crown.
The most prominent case is that of Chris Martin, vocalist of Coldplay, who on March 16 used the group’s official account on Instagram to broadcast a Live Stories from his home that consisted of a 30-minute concert.
More than 5 million views, more than 810 thousand likes and close to 45 thousand comments.
Bu gönderiyi Instagram’da gör
Adapt or Bankrupt
From its origins, Instagram has been defined as a social network that allows its users to express themselves through images – an app focused, first, on photography and then on all kinds of images, with a growing presence of video. With this approach, it has become one of the most used networks today, and a great tool for e-commerce.
However, in order to adapt to current demand, Adam Mosseri , director of Instagram, has expressed that the network is in the process of evolution and that it is no longer just an app to share photos.
Bu gönderiyi Instagram’da gör
According to his words, we could expect an Instagram platform whose central axis is no longer the images, but the video content. This new facet will integrate new ways of interacting with videos, such as full-screen, immersive, entertaining videos and with priority for mobile phones.
With this, Instagram seeks to consolidate its position as one of the top players in a market that does not stop growing in competitiveness. As Mosseri puts it: “Let’s face it, there is some serious competition right now. TikTok is huge. YouTube is even bigger.” So it’s time for Instagram to get even bigger.
This change is far from unexpected. Since 2016, Instagram has been adding new features to its platform in line with users’ expectations and current trends. Introduction of stories, IGTV, and reels in recent years indicates that the shift to video has been an idea in the works for a while now.
Users consume video and social platforms know it. The formats and forms of video consumption are constantly evolving.
What do you think the future holds for social media? Do you think video content will continue to rise? Leave a comment below and don’t forget follow our socials for the latest social media trends!