Instagram Video

Instagram + Video: Five things you should know

In case you’ve been living under a social media rock for the past 24hrs then you’re probably already aware that… DUN DUN DUN: Instagram launched video!

The videos are fifteen seconds long, come with thirteen filters, and are in v4.0 of the the latest version of Instagram (which you can update on both iOS and Android right now). Here’s our first Instagram video we took of Franz Ferdinand at the Ogilvy and Mather party at Cannes last night. We didn’t use the full 15 seconds but we sure could have.

For those of you starting to experiment with Instagram’s latest feature, here’s five things you should know:

1. This is about OWNERSHIP

In the same way that Facebook recently rolled out hashtags across their platform, this launch is very much a case of Facebook (who own Instagram, remember) parking their tanks on Twitter’s lawn. ‘Hey, that Vine app is doing quite well, we should get a piece of that action!’ – and here they are, doing just that. Plus, with an installed user-base of over 100m, that’s one hell of a leap frog.

2. What’s better, 15 or 6?

Again, picking up with the big daddy, Facebook, the world’s largest social network has been threatening to bring video ads to their platform for some time now. I say threaten, more rumoured. However, my point (and it’s one that has been already made quite succinctly already) is that fifteen seconds? Just handy for ad length I’d say.

Instagram founder Kevin Systrom was quoted as saying that fifteen seconds was ‘the Goldilocks moment‘ (meaning that it’s not too long, and it’s not too short). Personally I get the feeling that this Goldilocks is secretly a wolf in creative director’s clothing. I mean, who doesn’t love a good fifteen second TV spot?

3. Grow, Grow, Grow!

Inevitably, there has been the usual outcry of CHANGE! WE HATE CHANGE! from the Instagram puritans. However, in the same way that the venom spewed forth post-Android launch, in the grander scheme of things it’ll really have no negative effect at all. And if anything will no doubt result in further growth for the photo-now-video sharing site.

4. Vine isn’t standing still.

New features, coming soon. Watch this space.

5. Brands aren’t either.

Many future thinking brands [and clients] already have both Vine and Instagram as part of their ongoing content strategies. For these businesses the same rules apply: what is my objective? Being quick off the mark and jumping straight in is one thing, but being smart about it is another.

Think about your audience, is this platform relevant to your goals, what are the strategic benefits.. etc etc (In fact, I know a really good planning framework you should consider sense checking against).

That’s a lot to take in. But I’ll leave you with one more thing: Facebook also recently rolled out the ability to respond to Facebook content with images. Combine that with the announcement above, throw in a dash of Edge Rank, and you start to understand where and how the new Facebook newsfeed is really going to take us.

The future is visual. The future is content.