6 trending video platforms for publishers
New features, new promises: We have selected the trending online video platforms.
By Sarah Emler, Reuters Community
This year’s Digital News Report 2018 confirmed the rise of online video news. And by 2021, 80% of all consumer internet traffic will be video traffic, according to Forbes.
With all these opportunities ahead, it’s time to check out the most promising platforms.
YouTube – still rules for online video
Without a doubt, YouTube still rules for online video, and it continues to grow. In 2017, the platform had over 1.5 billion logged-in users every month. In 2018, this rose up to 1.8 billion per month.
According to Business Insider, YouTubeTV has become a stronger alternative to traditional cable TV. It offers a mix of live TV, video-on-demand and the newly added DVR feature, which allows you to forward and rewind whenever you want. It is available on all YouTubeTV channels except CBS.
There are also features aimed at specific audience groups, such as sports fans. The new feature “hide all score for this team/league” lets fans enjoy the game as if it was live – no spoilers, just pure enjoyment.
Facebook Watch – Youtube’s rival?
Some call it the “rival of Youtube” – but is this the case? According to Facebook, more than 50 million people in the US have watched at least one minute in Watch. The time spent watching videos in Watch has increased 14 times since the beginning of 2018. The growth in engagement signalled appetite in the market, leading Facebook to expand Watch internationally. Another reason for the high numbers could be due to the exclusiveness of the shows, which are only available on Watch.
Yet, compared to YouTube, Watch offers greater opportunities to engage with the audience. For instance, viewers are included in the story and can even influence the direction of the narration. This is done through interactive features such as quizzes or polls. Plus, so-called "Watch Parties" allows you to invite members of a group to watch videos together. This is followed by commentary and evaluation of the video.
CNN, Buzz, and Vox are among the Facebook Watch partners who produce their own video content. Partners can use ad-breaks to monetize their content, including pre-roll ads, mid-roll ads, and images below their videos. According to Facebook, 70 percent of mid-roll ads are viewed to completion.
IGTV – attracting the young
The Digital News Report 2018 not only discovered an increase in online video news but also in the consumption of news on smartphones.
As such, the use of vertical video is rising, and with IGTV it’s possible to post long-form vertical videos. The Daily Mail and The Guardian use IGTV to focus on human interest stories. Other news publishers, such as the BBC and The Economist, are also experimenting with IGTV. With 60% of users aged between 16-34 years, there’s a clear opportunity to reach younger audiences.
One boost to IGTV’s adoption is due to Instagram’s onboarding approach:all Instagram account owners are set to automatically follow IGTV. Plus, there's a better connection between the Instagram app and the standalone IGTV app. It is possible to access IGTV on Instagram through the click of a button, as well as add IGTV videos to Instagram stories. This simple user-interface and experience, allows for greater audience reach and adoption. Instagram has also promised opportunities for ad-revenue by the end of this year.
Reddit - video is following text
Known for being a text-heavy platform, last year, Reddit developed the capability to upload videos directly onto its platform. Reddit’s steadily building features that offer an improved experience. Their audience welcomed the video feature, as evidenced by the growth in video use on the platform. Reddit has more than 400,000 hours of hosted videos per day and 13 million hours per month. This is an increase of 38% since the beginning of 2018.
While video on Reddit is still in its early stages, Reddit offers great audience reach. It has 330 million monthly active users who can access the platform on mobile or desktop. Reddit made it easier to record and upload videos directly from the phone, saving users time, and users can also post links or embed videos from other platforms. It appears Reddit has it all, learning by doing and improving by adapting.
Twitch – live-streaming at its best
NASA, Buzzfeed, The Washington Post are just some of names who are promoting their content on Twitch. Twitch is known as one of the most popular streaming services in the gaming community. Users can live broadcast their gameplays and also save their live streams.
Given their enthusiastic and loyal user-base, it could be said that, Twitch has mastered live streaming – their tools are reliable, if not the best available on the market. Plus, Twitch Partners can earn revenue through audience subscriptions. There’s also an advertising offering, only available to Partners who fulfil specific criteria classified as “role models”.
DTube – the blockchain-run platform
Highly influenced by YouTube, DTube is an emerging video platform to watch. As with Vimeo, it is completely ad-free and offers trending tags to help users surface the best, most relevant content. Plus, users can save videos to watch later – an effort to lure users back to the platform.
Most importantly, DTube allows content creators to earn crypto-currency by uploading videos. Users are also rewarded for their engagement. DTube runs on the Steemit platform, a social media platform where everyone gets paid for creating and curating content. By upvoting videos and comments, the content producer earns Steem dollars.
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