Home > Communication, Production > Need More Time? How About 15 Seconds?

Need More Time? How About 15 Seconds?

So in my last post (sadly too many months ago) I looked at the Vine app and its 6 second length. As I said there, I don’t get it as a tool for companies and organizations, as its just too little time to tell a story on its own.

It seems Instagram agreed with me.

Their new video offering is a colossal (by comparison) 15 seconds long, and the numbers immediately after launch are astonishing by almost any standard:

Instagram users upload 5M clips in vid-sharing feature’s first day

5 Million clips in 24 hours. Nearly 21,000 hours of content uploaded in one day. While this by itself is astonishing, the more important factor for the enterprise as I see it is that you now have a real, solid chunk of time to develop a story and share it with your viewers. (H/T, incidentally, to the fine Mike Whitmore, digital genius, for the link above he so kindly posted. Look for him on twitter, @mikewhitmore to learn some things and periodic Nutella updates.)

If you watch video online you’ve gotten any number of ads delivered by video – often pre-roll ads that you wait impatiently through so you can get to your chosen content. Check those ads out – there’s a significant number of them that only run 15 seconds. And you get the whole story, and a thorough understanding of the product, movie or service. Now, what I’ve seen to this point (Adweek offers some examples) is a little underwhelming – so far it looks like longer stop motion pieces not much different than Vine. But as they point out in that Adweek story, these are just early attempts to tell stories with it. I fully expect more polished pieces as companies and agencies get comfortable with the medium and I think you’ll see dialogue and real stories.

From a production standpoint I’m still not overwhelmed – you’re leaning on a phone/device app with limited controls and editing tools, but I expect this to change as well. Users may seek better production tools, or better yet develop them on their own. It won’t be Final Cut Pro or Vegas, but I see real potential for more of an editing suite for these apps. Samsung’s recently announced Galaxy NX introduces the first serious connected camera, and the ability to leverage a serious (or at least semi-serious) DSLR and WiFi connectivity means we could see some beautifully shot Instagram videos.

So I think I was right about Vine – it’s just too short to tell a story, but Instagram video changes the discussion a lot.

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