By VERN OAKLEY
CEO, Tribe Pictures
With 2016 finally in the rearview mirror, it seems like a good time to reflect on the trends we see happening in the world of video and how they may be addressed in 2017 and beyond.
1) Welcome to the video tsunami. Video is by far the way more and more people want to receive messages and information. We're at the crest of the wave, and the surf is up. By 2020, 84 percent of all Internet traffic will be video. That's an astounding number.
2) Video continues to move in-house. Many of the Global 1,000 corporations have in-house video departments. We worked with more internal video departments in 2016 than in any other year. The middle market is looking to outsource the whole video thing and avoid staff and space allocations.
3) There's a lot of bad video out there. The barrier to entry is so low in terms of money for the equipment, and business is so thirsty for video, which means that there is a profusion of mediocre video and much of it is ignored. Don’t believe me? Spend 10 minutes on YouTube, pick a category, and look at few videos and check out the number of views.
4) Smart businesses demand ROI and ROI demands context. To understand and create effective video content is a skill unto itself. What distinguishes the merely acceptable from the truly great in our field is an advanced level of strategic and creative thinking, a firm grip on the business challenges, and the societal context your audience is experiencing.
5) Virtual Reality is a contender. We've barely scratched the surface of VR's massive potential for corporate and institutional applications. While VR is currently in the "trough of uncertainty" stage of its development, there's no doubt that more immersive and interactive video experiences are here to stay. We [Tribe] did some exciting work with BASF with 360-degree video in 2016 and will continue to do a lot more of it in the coming years.
6) Culture beats strategy. Cultural differentiators are the most surefire (some might say only) way to stand out in a crowded global business environment. It starts at the top – no secret there. Most of Tribe’s work over the last year can all be categorized under the umbrella of "culture.” We found we have helped our clients most when solving a specific communication challenge around building and improving a company's culture.
7) Video is more global than ever. Video is the only truly common world language. Global companies, with global viewpoints balanced with U.S.-based operations; that sums up much of Tribe's 2016 corporate client list: Allergan, Pfizer, BASF, UBS, Verizon, KPMG, Colgate-Palmolive, BD, American Express, Stanley Black & Decker, Hubbel, Hess, Vera Wang and Lonza.
8) 30 Years of Pattern Recognition. Tribe celebrated 30 years in business in 2016, and while we're not patting ourselves on the back too much (we did pause for a celebratory Tribe lunch!), we feel we are at the top of our game, but must keep climbing higher. Having 30 years of experience allows us to notice patterns and execute projects in a more cohesive, cogent manner and more efficiently. (And we also have some very dynamic young people on staff to keep us honest and up-to-date.)
9) Business has two speeds: faster and faster. So much of our work in 2016 was completed under tight time constraints. This is result of the speed of business and the reality of the lives of our clients. In order to serve them properly, we need to understand their pressure and work with it. To survive and thrive we have to be a nimble business and so we've learned how to assemble pop-up teams at a moment's notice, and how to do great creative work under duress.
10) Publishing a book reveals who you are - really. This is a more personal one. I wrote a book called Leadership in Focus: Bringing Out Your Best on Camera, which will be published by Greenleaf in April of 2017. Figuring out just what I wanted to say and then the best way to share that message with the world has been an unparalleled experience and a lesson in self-discovery.