The usage, spend and consumption of video content are set to increase (again!) in 2019, according to new research, continuing a growth trend that shows little sign of slowing.

People have been talking about it being the 'year of video' since way back in 2006, but these latest stats show that, despite its continued growth, video still hasn't reached saturation point - and it's here to stay.

Among the highlights of Wyzowl's 5th annual State of Video Marketing Survey (based on a sample of 611 marketers and consumers) are:

  1. More marketers use video content than ever before
  2. 2018 was a big year, but 2019 will be bigger…
  3. Consumers love video as a learning tool
  4. YouTube is getting harder, rather than easier
  5. Vertical video might not be quite as big a deal as we thought...

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In early 2017, Wyzowl found that 63% of businesses were using video as a marketing tool. By the start of 2018, that had risen to 81%. Now, as we arrive in 2019, the number has increased again to 87%.

They're not just using it more; they're using it to greater effect. 83% of marketers now say that video gives them a good ROI, up from 78% twelve months ago.

Clearly, these numbers epitomize the opportunity of video as a marketing tool.

It also, increasingly, represents a challenge, and marketers are feeling the competition.

90% of marketers told us they feel the level of competition and noise has increased in the past year. The pressure to create great video content - not just any old video content - is greater than ever as we move into 2019.

2018, for many marketers, was the first year they'd actually created video content. In fact, over a quarter of those video marketers Wyzowl surveyed used video in the last twelve months.

Why was 2018 the year? There are a variety of reasons, it seems. For 44%, it was simply easier to convince others in their organization how valuable video can be. Shrinking production costs (41%) shortening production timelines (39%) and ease of in-house creation (35%) were also cited, while 5% said they simply felt clearer on the ROI of video, justifying the investment required.

Looking ahead to 2019, all signs point to an even bigger year ahead. Firstly, the market is desperate for it! 87% of consumers say they'd like to see more video from brands in 2019.

Unsurprisingly, 99% of marketers already using video will continue in the year ahead - with 88% planning to increase spend. Meanwhile a whopping 74% of those who aren't currently marketing with video say they expect to start in 2019 - compared to 34% in 2017 and 65% in 2018.

Wyzowl asked consumers how they'd most prefer to learn about new products or services - and video was the runaway winner. Over two-thirds (68%) said a short video would be best, way ahead of text-based articles (15%), infographics (4%) presentations and pitches (4%) ebooks and manuals (3%).

In an age where fast, comprehensive audience understanding is so crucial, video is a smart investment for companies looking to explain their product or service to would-be customers.

That's further underpinned by the fact that, when asked to identify just one type of video content they'd like to see more of from brands, the most commonly cited answer was explainer videos (39%). 20% wanted to see more entertaining ‘viral' style videos. 12% would like to see product demo videos, 10% said video blogs, 9% said interactive videos and 6% said they'd like to see more software tutorials.

Every year, we ask marketers which channels they're using for their video content, and how successful they feel those channels are.

While the number of marketers using YouTube has remained the same (87%) - keeping it at the top of the tree as the most widely-used video platform - the number of marketers who feel that it's working successfully for them has decreased from 90% last year, down to 80%. This is a really interesting trend to keep an eye on in the months to come.

One of the dominant trends in video marketing over recent months and years has been the rise of vertical video -- which has become non-negotiable for modern viewers.

The broad strokes and assumptions behind this idea are thus:

  • Most people watch at least some video on their mobile devices.
  • Most people hold their mobile device ‘vertically' - that is, in portrait mode - for every day browsing.
  • Most video content is horizontal - like our televisions and cinema screens always have been.
  • The argument goes, therefore, that video content that's truly optimised for mobile must be vertical, and that it's silly to expect our audience to flip their phones to watch horizontally.

Firstly, our survey did back up some assumptions. For example, 99% of us watch at least SOME video on mobile, with many watching ALL (6%) or MOST (34%) on mobile.

It's also true that most of us hold our mobile devices vertically for every day browsing- 87% of us, in fact.

However, from there, things started to get more complicated.

Whereas the commentators who advocate vertical video assume that most people also film vertically, 60% of our respondents told us they'd flip their phone horizontally to take a video on their phone.

And when it comes to watching video, 75% told us they PREFER to watch video horizontally.

The one unanimous answer here is was that we emphatically find it annoying when videos display with a 'black bar'. 82% were irritated by video that wasn't optimised to watch horizontally or vertically.

In other words, our takeaway is that consumers aren't in any great rush for vertical video -- they just want to watch video that's best optimized to fill their mobile screens.

These statistics paint the picture of a thriving, growing industry.

Consumers are eager for more video content from brands, and brands are primed to give them exactly that -- with usage AND spend poised to increase in the months ahead. 

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 video marketing starter pack

Originally published Jan 24, 2018 8:00:00 AM, updated July 12 2019


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