Facebook’s Instagram Video Chose 15 Seconds for a Reason

In Customer Experience, Featured on App, Marketing and Sales, Social media, Technology, The Mobile Customer by Vaughn Highfield


Do nine seconds really matter? After all, what can you really do with nine seconds? Well, Facebook's hipster-happy picture sharing app Instagram has taken those nine seconds, added it to Vine's six and made a pretty intimidating 15 seconds of video recording for every user.

Obviously, this is Facebook verging into Twitter territory once more after embracing the iconic "hashtag" Twitter popularised as it vies  to usurp the social network as teens leave Facebook behind.

But what's the importance of these 15 seconds, and can they really be far more attractive than Vine's six?

Well, from a user perspective being able to make longer videos and share them with friends is a good thing. It means you can capture moments and create some rather interesting stuff if you were that way inclined. In reality we'll probably end up with monologues and tons of cat videos.

However, from a commercial standpoint, this is the smartest thing Facebook has ever done.

Now advertisers can jump onto the platform with great ease.












Fifteen seconds is roughly the sort of time a TV advert may have to convey something. Occasionally it's far longer, but usually most adverts are around 15 – 30 seconds in length: perfect for Instagram's new video sharing service.

And, as it's integrated near seamlessly into Facebook, this means that it'll be a great way for brands to get their adverts right onto consumer's newsfeeds without even having to alter their million-pound TV advert.

We'd be very surprised if uptake of this new tech by marketers isn't near instant.

This doesn't guarantee that people will watch or like these adverts, after all many who use the internet regularly tend to shy away from TV and thus advertising from that medium. Those making use of Instagram's new video service may well want to innovate and produce something slick to capture audience attention.

Here Vine may have the upper hand as its restrictive six second timeframe has led to some incredibly creative videos and advertisements on the service.

Maybe 15 seconds is just that little bit too long?


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[Video: TechCrunch] [Image: NYTimes]