With such an emphasis on video content creation from news outlets, brands
and individual users, could we be facing oversaturation? That’s what the
results of a new study from the social analytics outfit Parse.ly suggests
In an analysis of 700 sites in the Parse.ly network, the organization found
that video posts saw 30 percent lower engagement than the average post.
This goes against the current narrative that video is the go-to
storytelling medium for today and the near future. Still, long-form,
short-form and slideshow posts tend to outperform their video counterparts.
The study suggests some reasons for lack of engagement with video posts,
including the fact that people seem to dislike autoplay and slow load
But perhaps marketers and communicators have been so blinded by bloated
video budgets that they’ve overlooked one glaring fact: We’re producing
more video than consumers care to consume.
Nearly every time I wind up on a USA Today story, for example, there’s an
autoplay video that may or may not pertain to the story I clicked on. And
if it does pertain to the stories, the video just gives a few details that
you can ascertain from the first three paragraphs, accompanied by some
stock imagery. I don’t mean to pick on USA Today, but you can probably
picture the meeting where an executive said, “More video!” and the poor
multimedia reporter said, “OK. What’s our budget?” to which the executive
said, “Next to nothing!”
Think of how the Facebook newsfeed has evolved to rely heavily on native
video. Publishers have, at most, five seconds to capture your attention
before you scroll to the next thing. It’s no wonder that a NewsWhip study
found that Facebook video engagement had dropped sharply last year, with
likes falling 55 percent, shares falling 57 percent and comments dropping
I think it’s oversaturation: When everybody’s producing decent video
content, it’s tough to find the really good stuff. Perhaps we’ve become
complacent enough to accept whatever is published without bothering to
question whether it’s truly valuable.
What’s your theory, PR Daily readers: What’s behind the online video
paradox? Or have you experienced something different with your brands?