When Erik Qualman – social media magic man and author of the hugely successful book Socialnomics – released his latest stat-packed YouTube video he did a great job of highlighting the power of social media in the modern age. It makes for quite a curious watch, especially for those of us working in the marketing game.
But before I address any of the startling statistics Qualman presents, I’d just like to point out how this three-minute clip is a shining example of clever video marketing. Considering it’s a sequence of facts and figures strewn across the screen, the video does fairly well at driving its point home in an interesting fashion. So it goes to show how a smart design combined with eye-catching infographics and a Daft Punk backing tune can retain a viewer’s attention for the sizeable duration of 180 seconds. I’ve made my way through a tube of Pringles in less time.
In fact, 180 whole entire seconds is a lot more impressive if you take into account one of the video’s statistics – the average person has an attention span of seven seconds, one second less than the average goldfish.
Now, as insulting as that stat is, (an average goldfish, not even a particularly intelligent one) I’m inclined to agree with it. Mainly because as soon as I’d read it I immediately started wondering where the nearest fish and chip shop was for lunch. But also because we as consumers are being so overloaded with advertisements that we tend to disregard anything that doesn’t appeal to us directly within the first few seconds. This sort of consumer behaviour has shifted the way content marketers approach advertising, and that’s where Vine comes in.
Vine’s influence on advertising
Another stat from Qualman’s video mentions that the six-second Vine is the new 30-second commercial. To me, this makes a lot of sense. For one thing, I haven’t concentrated on anything for more than 30 seconds at a time since I started writing this post. Besides salt and vinegar Pringles. And another thing, no one’s buying into traditional marketing anymore anyway – only a meagre 14% of consumers trust advertisements, so says stat-man Qualman.
With content marketing via Vine, what viewers are getting are short, snappy, engaging clips primarily intended to entertain while merely hinting at a brand or business – the gentle approach to advertising. A great example of a big business using Vine for content marketing purposes, and using it well, is Ford.
Ford has only been using the platform since early 2014 yet it has managed to accrue a substantial following by recruiting the help of more established Viners. Instead of asking these influencers to produce Vines advertising the motor company, Ford has opted to simply ensure one of its vehicles plays a small part in the influencer’s personal clips, making it more like product placement and less like abrasive big-business advertising. Re-Vining the clips using the influencer’s handle, as opposed to Ford’s, furthers that sentiment and encourages more user engagement.
Plus, the playful and irreverent humour incorporated into its clips attracts the attention, trust and respect of a younger audience who might typically be uninterested in corporate commercials. If another of Qualman’s facts is to be understood – that 50% of the world’s population is under 30 years old – then the younger audience is the largest and most social media-dependent demographic out there.
So, if you want to tap into this pool of potential customers, it might be worth taking a page out of Ford’s book and start harnessing the power of Vine in your content marketing strategy – it’s shaping up to be the next step in marketing’s speedy progression.