Video for the Web and Social Media

About a decade ago, when the shift of how people received their news went from newspapers and tv to the web and social media, journalists who worked in local tv thought they had the upper hand.  “All we have to do is take what appears on tv and put it on the web,” we all thought, and for a short period of time it worked.  Video stories, especially consumer and investigative, would do well on the web, but quickly viewing habits changed and local television stations have been slow to react.

First here are some statistics

  • online videos account for 74% of traffic on the internet
  • 8 billion video views on Facebook and over 10 billion on Snapchat daily
  • 500 million views daily on You Tube

The problem is local television stations can’t make one web video and apply it to all platforms, because the viewing habits for each platforms are different.   So local stations have to choose and Facebook has been the preferred choice for media outlets over the past couple of years, because users spend on average 50 minutes a day on the site. (This is twice as long as the quality time people spend with their children, but that’s a completely different topic.)

Here are some quick guidelines that work when making a Facebook video…

Facebook viewers likes their video to be at a maximum of two minutes long so keep it short.

85% of Facebook videos are watched without sound.  Text is imperative.  The Huff Post does a great job with this.

Square videos are becoming more popular.  This is a killer for those of us who live in a 16×9 world.


No question it is extra work and cost for stations and networks to produce web videos, but it’s also a must.  Traditional television viewing has dropped every year over the past six years.  Millennial viewers are not watching videos in the traditional way.  Instead they are relying on apps and streaming devices and they are only watching traditional tv for an average of 10 hours a week.  For local news outlets to avoid the fate of newspapers, adjustments need to be made and quick.






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