Are Instagram and Vine stealing our attention spans?
Those of us who make video content for a living are well aware that attention spans are dropping dramatically. It's something we've been blogging about for a while. But are Vine and Instagram's video apps driving this down even further?
Matt Smith: head of production at Tech TV
Vine sets a tiny six-second limit on uploaded videos and Instagram a slightly more generous 15 seconds. Both have become really popular for sharing videos socially (especially from smartphones) and businesses such as PayPal, General Electric and American Airlines have been quick to become early adopters.
But a TV producer friend of mine remarked this week that since watching a lot of Instagram videos online recently – any video content over 15 seconds now seems way too long. And he's late 30s.
What about those in Radio 1's core market, 18- to 24-year-olds? How much attention span are they going to have when they're 30? It's something to have in the back of your mind when you plan your next digital campaign.
Content these days does need to be really short and bite-sized, otherwise it becomes online stodge that no one's got the time to digest.
Think about making your online videos about a single thought, point or maybe just an emotion. Think creatively about how to make something that shows what you mean, without putting the kitchen sink into it.
Content doesn't have to be 15 seconds to succeed, but it's a good marker to have in the back of your mind. Watch some of your digital video content back. Does it get to the point in 15 seconds.
Maybe it should.
Matt Smith is head of production at Tech TV
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