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The Big 5 for Live Video (For Now)

It’s a video-mad web world. LinkedIn has just added native video in its feeds, Facebook has expanded its Live Video and Snapchat, Instagram, and Twitter are running hard to stay up!

Only years ago the amount of bandwidth it would take to drive video streams was a major concern. Those fears have now subsided, as video is everywhere, and it’s only going to get bigger. In fact, a recent study shows that about 71% of “peak downstream traffic” in the United States is for streaming video, audio and entertainment.
And with the availability of bandwidth for video streaming comes the social networks’ push to capture more eyeballs for video ads, sponsorships and partnerships. That means a lot of forward momentum for live video streaming on the big five: Facebook, Snapchat, Instagram, Twitter and now LinkedIn. Some numbers:
Facebook– about 8 billion video views a day (since the start of 2015!)
Instagram – Video use up around 150% in 2016
Snapchat150 million users in early 2016, and growing quickly
Twitter – 80% of Twitter users access it via mobile and video is up 50% on the platform
LinkedIn – has introduced native video in user feeds for its 450 million members
Additionally, there are deals going on with brands to create more video content across the digital spectrum. Where this leads is up for speculation, but here’s a snapshot of where things currently stand.


Facebook is roaring ahead with live video, both on its own platform and through its partnership with NBC and the International Olympic Committee. The partnership calls for NBC to upload two minutes of Olympics video highlights to its Facebook page every day throughout the Olympics. Facebook content will feature regularly in NBC’s TV coverage of the Olympics.
Facebook has also borrowed from Periscope with the use of its live video map, to share exactly where in the world you can find the most interesting live video happenings.


Instagram caused a kerfuffle in recent weeks with its launch of Instagram ‘Stories’. This new feature, heavily derivative of Snapchat’s “Memories” feature, lets Instagram users to share a montage of temporary photos and videos that have a 24-hour lifespan on the network. Also, like Snapchat, Instagram also now lets users manipulate  their videos and images with different filters and drawing and painting tools. But it’s a clear-headed signal that the network plans to stay current with its offerings to reach the now 500 million Instagram users (300 million that use it every day!).


More brands continue to flock to Snapchat’s platform. With 150 million daily users watching branded video clips, influencer stories and funny filter faces, Snapchat has become the network du jour for kids, teens, millennials, and even older tech geeks. Web analysts predict that advertisers will start to pour more dollars into Snapchat’s video posts (aka mobile TV reality). Brands use Snapchat with live video content to gain a natural interaction with Snapchat’s younger consumers.


LinkedIn has begun rolling out native video to some of its network’s top influencers, and it’s expected to snowball in a big way for the business market. The network launched a mobile recording app to make it easy for CEO, CMOs and others to note specific moments in their work day on video for immediate sharing on LinkedIn. If this app soars in usage for the selected early influencers, then look for the network to roll it out on a wider basis across LinkedIn.


Twitter also is fast forwarding its growth with live video. Reuter reports that Twitter has set up deals with live sports businesses MLB, NHL, NFL and others. The platform looks to capitalize on the daily Twitter conversations around live sports and is banking on live video deals to grow that part of the business.
Brands should be looking to drive video use in their content marketing activities. That’s where the users are headed, and brands should be there too.

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