VIDEO KILLED THE RADIO STAR
Rob Brown, the current president of the esteemed Chartered Institute of Public Relations, spoke in Jersey last week at the CIPR CI Forum, which was a half-day conference ‘exploring current and future issues for public relations and communications professionals’.
The amicable Rob’s message to the assembled PR coterie was simple: The future of PR – at least in the short to medium term - is video. ‘Visual communication’ rather than text is the way forward.
Rob’s predictions are certainly grounded in fact: we are now watching more than 100 million hours of video on Facebook every day and research finds that nearly 75% of consumers are watching video before they decide to buy.
Of course video is nothing new – didn’t The Buggles say that it had killed the radio star in 1977? And Dire Straits definitely wanted MTV by 1985.
But we all know what Rob means. He’s talking about the accessibility of video and the fact that we can all make decent, quality videos these days with our phones and editing apps. But when I say ‘quality’, I mean the definition and the ease with which we can get fantastic shots via GoPros, drones and other gizmos.
However, just as it is with text, with video, content is king. If I had a pound for every Facebook video I’d seen which involved bellicose cats, dancing dogs, gung-ho goats, acrobatic fails, stag-do high jinks or nail-biting near-misses, I too would be able to give $3 billion to good causes.
The fact is video needs to inspire, provoke, stimulate and educate rather than pander to our infant inner-selves. If visual communication is the future, we need to start thinking before we film.