Of late, executives and pundits in the digital video industry have been discussing the rise of mobile video at numerous industry conferences and in many publications. Of course, consumers are already watching video on mobile devices. Walk on any plane or train, and you’ll see numerous people watching movies, TV shows, or user-generated video content on their tablets and phones.
We think that mobile video consumer use is poised to skyrocket even further (we’re talking true hockey stick growth here). What will drive that growth?
First, we believe that a momentous news event (OJ Simpson’s verdict or famed Bronco chase or the Space Shuttle explosion, for two long-ago examples), especially one that unfolds over an extended period of time, will drive mobile video consumer usage much higher. Consumers now expect news content to be available via their mobile devices, and a news event of this magnitude will drive consumers to form new media habits – viewing and monitoring video news coverage via their mobile devices.
Second, we think that several new apps – Vine and Braindex - point the way for a future of increased mobile video consumption .
With the much-discussed Vine, Twitter may have finally figured out the “Instagram for video” conundrum We’re not convinced that the 6-second time-limit for Vine videos is the right decision. But putting that question aside for the moment, with the size of Twitter’s audience and the ability for Twitter to promote Vine videos within the Twitter stream, there will be a lot of people using, viewing, and creating via Vine.
But, don’t forget, Facebook’s Messenger app now allows users to record a video message and share it as a Message with friends or family. With the amount of resources and coders that Facebook is now throwing at mobile, the company is not going to sit idly by and accede the mobile video space to Twitter. And, frankly, neither will Google either. One of the stand-out features of Google+ has been its video Hangouts, which allow users to participate via their mobile devices.
In addition to Vine, Braindex is an app that foretells the potential for second-screen tablet video. With Braindex, you’re participating against celebrities (Mike Tyson, etc.) in an app game show. The current version of Braindex has a fun intuitive user interface, and there seems no shortage of celebrities willing to join in. Now only if they could convince Jimmy Fallon to run a Braindex segment to show NBC the potential of a live “app-show.”
With viewership increasing, how will digital video advertisers take advantage of that growth? Currently, many mobile video ads are following the typical online model in terms of length and format. We think that’s going to change dramatically. If someone is watching a short clip (6 seconds?) of mobile video, the mobile video advertising will have to change, too. We know that there will be a lot of experimentation to test what video ads perform best on mobile.
With the growth of digital video consumption a given, what digital video advertising do you think will work best to monetize mobile video?