Different Tools, Same Craft

Different tools, same craft

Things have changed considerably since we first started Tinderflint. Back in 2010 many of today’s content channels were in their infancy and we would often find ourselves having to convince clients that there was value in producing video content online, a discussion that simply doesn’t happen anymore.

To highlight the scale of change last year there were more than 20 billion video views per day across Facebook, Snapchat, and YouTube. According to a recent benchmark report 92% of respondents believe video is becoming more important to their marketing efforts and more than two-thirds are increasing their budgets for video. While overall budgets are becoming tighter, they are migrating online. There is clearly a huge appetite for content both from the perspective of the audience and from brands looking to reach out to them. In the current climate this demand for video content means that budgets are having to work much harder for many brands. As a result, we have to work smarter. It’s standard now for projects to consist of a suite of content that can work across multiple platforms, rather than a single deliverable and it’s much better to be in a position to be able to reversion content because you have shot for purpose, rather than having to try and squeeze a round peg into a 1:1 hole.

The way video is consumed is changing too. Last year saw 51% of all video plays on mobile devices, a trend that is only set to increase with the advent of IGTV. It is becoming increasingly common for us to deliver content in 9:16 & 1:1 with no requirement for 16:9 delivery at all!

A constant challenge is keeping the audience hooked. According to Vidyard the average retention rate by the end of a video is 37%. Audience retention also depends on the length of the video. As expected, the shorter the video, the larger the percentage of the audience are left at the end. Statistics show that videos of 90 seconds in length see an average retention at the end of 53%, compared to a video over 30 minutes that retains only 10% of its audience.

I appreciate that attention spans have dropped considerably over the years. In part I think this is due to the sensory bombardment and instant gratification of living in the modern world. For me it’s also being a sleep deprived father of 3 under 5’s! Whatever the reason attention spans clearly have an impact of viewing habits, but I think that this drop off rate could also suggest that some of the work being produced is not engaging enough?

The top 5% of videos see an average retention rate of 77% of their audience. Shouldn’t we all be looking to achieve this? I see this as a challenge to work with our clients, understand the audience and up our game. I know that I will happily sit through a longer form video if the content draws me in, and the narrative grabs my interest.

Technology is advancing. The tools that we use are continually progressing and the platforms through which we deliver our messages are evolving. While some of these advances are fads and others are ground breaking, the bottom line is that it all still comes down to the original craft of storytelling and that rings true across the board.

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