Unlocking the Secrets to Mobile Video: YouTube Capture, Instagram & Vine

Unlocking the Secrets to Mobile Video: YouTube Capture, Instagram & Vine

4th April 2014

Greg Jarboe and Larry Markowitz were the two panelists who talked about their experiences in mobile video and the opportunities for all businesses at ClickZ New York.

Both men took great pains to state that mobile video has changed and will continue to change extremely quickly, however there remains a lot of opportunity for businesses of all sizes.

But first, some statistics about the state of play:

  • YouTube has more than 1 billion users worldwide, (which is all the more impressive given that it is banned in China). Of those 1 billion users, 158 million of them are in the US. YouTube’s audience is bigger than many TV networks. Mobile makes up almost 40% of YouTube’s global watch time.
  • Instagram has 200 Million users worldwide and 70million in US. Instagram is also going through a shift from images to videos at the moment
  • Vine, the newcomer, already has 40M users of which 25M are in the US

The numbers are impressive, however many businesses are still not using embracing video:

  • 48.5% of businesses don’t use YouTube
  • 69.5% of businesses don’t use Instagram
  • 79.3% of businesses don’t use Vine

If you fall into any of thee three categories above, read on, read on.

Why invest in video?

The Animoto Online and Mobile Video Study revealed that 73% of consumers find video helpful when it comes to making purchasing decisions. The advantage of video content is that is allows users to see the product in scale, how it functions, and as such is more effective than a static image. By seeing the product in 360 degrees you are effectively reducing the mystery of the product, de-risking it from the consumer’s point of view.

Mythbusting: Your video doesn’t have to be funny

Whilst it’s true that cats are winning the internet, simple, instructional videos are popular – 67% of people watch instructional videos and 64% watch product videos. People want walkthroughs about the product, for example, the factory floor where your product is built or design, the office environment of the customer service staff. Users appreciate the transparency and when buying a product for the first time or from a new company, they want an opportunity to see a 360 degree view of the company before committing further resources. Microvideo sites such as Vine and Instagram are just the right forum for short, light videos that convey all the advantages of your brand and products or services.

The best news is all of this is that thanks to the proliferation of smartphones, everyone is potentially a videographer and there is virtually no barrier to entry for anyone on any bidget.

Here’s a quick summary of some of the apps (free!)

YouTube Capture – lets you stitch together clips, edit + pick music.

You can upload simultaneously to Google+, Facebook, YouTube and Twitter.

Instgram – you can now produce videos with free filters.

Can upload to Tumblr, Flickr, FourSquare, Twitter, Facebook etc.

Vine – videos share on Twitter + Facebook – with more coming.

Goodbye keywords – hello hashtags

* Pro-tip * Hashtags searches are the most effective means of finding content on instagram and vine. Plain keyword searches are simply not as reliable so to maximize the chances of your video being found, make sure it is labeled with an appropriate hashtag.

Tips on Using Video in an unexpected way to get results

1) Use video for PR

Create an unlisted video, this worked with the editor of Boing Boing who went on to feature the story idea. The beauty of an unlisted video is that only the person with the URL can watch it – it makes the recipient feel special and that some time and thought has gone into the pitch.


2) Use video for live reviews

Shoot Instagram video at your location or during an event as BountyRimini, a small pizzeria in Italy have been doing. During the evening, staff take videos of the diners, who talk about their experiences at the restaurant that night. These invariably positive reviews are then edited in Instagram and uploaded to Facebook. The reviewers are then tagged in the photo so all of their friends can see what they are up to. This is a very simple, inexpensive means of generating fresh content that will automatically resonate with the people featured.

How can you measure mobile video success?

Both Larry and Greg were keen to stress that it does not make sense to focus on the number of views your videos have – sharing is the most important metric and should be the sole KPI by which to gauge the success of the project.

What’s the secret to be successful on micro video?

Larry shared some of his tips and insights so newcomers to micro video can start their campaigns in the best possible way.

1)    Use YouTube analytics and VidIQ* for your competitors’ videos – assess how video is performing as a channel for your own company and for your competitors.

2)    The first 15 seconds of the video are crucial. Aim to captivate your audience and keep them on your channel with annotations linking to other videos and subscribe buttons. You are aiming to keep the user there.

3)    Cross promote your content between channels. Promote your instagram videos on your Facebook pages, tweet out links to your followers about your Vine videos.

4)    Calls to Action (CTAs)  – make sure they are clear within the video, whether it’s getting people to visit your site, signup to a newsletter or subscribe to your channel.

5)    Write Optimized Metadata so you can appear in the search results.

(*VidIQ – a free chrome plugin that provides great insights on your competitors’ projects –  Gives data, views, shares, tweets. Powerful tool)

Instagram Tips

1)    Complete your profile and make sure your cover image has a CTA on it, as per Jamie Oliver’s here:


2)    Interact with the community – interact elsewhere on the internet referencing your Instgram feed in an appropriate manner. This will generate traffic back to your Instagram feed.

3)    Be personable in executing point 2!

4)    Use Hashtags –as per the earlier mentioned point about hashtags yielding more search results than keywords alone.

Vine Tips

1)    Use time lapse videos as this is the format for Vine specifically.

ASOS recently experimented with this with rather nice results.

They had acquired some market data suggesting that people didn’t find the thrill of opening a shipping box as satisfying as buying something in person. To challenge this idea, whilst neatly referencing it, ASOS launched a campaign on Vine asking customers to film them opening the shopping haul.

2)    Show personality and have some fun with it – it’s an informal medium and most of the videos have a human, imperfect feel to them.

3)    Use Hashtags to mark up your video.

Video Analytics Tools

Finally here are some video analytics tools which can be very useful.

Simply Measured
YouTube Analytics

(Vine data is currently only available on Simply Measured)

Pro Tip

**Video SEO tip – visit the VW youtube channel, focusing on the page titles and keywords as this is an excellent case study of well-executed video SEO. **


About the author

Sarah Kershaw is a search analyst based in New York who engages in freelance writing in her spare time, writing about trends in digital marketing, the future of news and fine art. As a search analyst, Sarah is interested in UX and IA and tends to get very animated when talking about fonts and colours.


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