We’ve all been hearing about it for a while now. 360 video is coming and it’s going to be a gamechanger, but while that may still indeed be true, it hasn’t happened yet. Yes, more and more brands and marketers are experimenting with it and yes, more and more viewers have seen it, but it hasn’t exactly changed any games yet.
Why hasn’t that happened? Will it ever happen? If so, when will that be? These are questions that have been on all of our minds since the emergence of the technology, but one thing’s for sure, if you’ve ever seen one second of 360 video footage, then you know that those questions are worth whatever it take to answer them. 360 video has a unique appeal and absolutely has the power to make your content stand out from the rest.
So, being that we’ve been doing video production in NJ and NY for years now, we thought we’d take a closer look at how 360 video has evolved thus far so that we can better predict where it may truly be headed moving forward.
How far has it come so far?
Well, 360 video still requires special equipment to create the image and while falling prices should help to make the process more popular eventually, that hasn’t happened yet. However, just because the necessary equipment isn’t so accessible yet, that doesn’t mean that there haven’t been changes in other aspects.
First off, the platforms for 360 video have multiplied and evolved in their own right. Youtube, for instance, already made live 360 videos available to all users before Facebook followed suit, and now Twitter isn’t far behind as the site’s not offering live 360 videos to all users yet but is doing it for select partners.
Then there’s the evolution of the 360 video viewer and the results of a recent study done by “Think With Google” called Is 360 Video Worth It? led to some surprising results in that regard. For example, they found that fewer people actually watched the 360 video content all the way through until the end than they did the standard.
However the study also found that the click-through rate was much higher for the 360 content than the standard, which means that while fewer people may be watching the 360 videos, the ones that are watching are much more likely to engage with the content, videomaker, brand, marketer, etc.
So, if part of your mission is to accumulate as many likes, shares, and comments for your video content as possible, then know that there will be a very good chance that the viewers you do manage to get to watch your 360 videos in their entirety will engage.
Where’s 360 video going?
While it’s still unclear if 360 video will remain its own style of video or will just end up serving as something of a bridge between standard and VR video, right now, it has an appeal all its own. No, viewers don’t get to navigate a completely artificial reality, but they do get to have control over which part of the environment they want to see, and that’s become extremely important to them.
It’s also what makes 360 video perfect for transporting viewers to places and environments they’ve never been to, places almost no one’s been to even. That way, they get to experience being there for themselves. Check this post out from VIATech.com to see some great examples or what we’re talking about: 4 Amazing Things You Can Do in a 360 Video (That You Can’t in Real Life).
The point is that there are so many possibilities for the future of 360 video when you look at it like that. While it’s still hard to foresee how stories can be told differently yet still effectively using this type of technology, the fact that it can be used to immerse viewers in new experiences like almost nothing else is crystal clear.
Then there are all the highly visual industries that are just starting to notice the potential power in 360 video, such as real estate, travel & tourism, retail, etc. They’re just starting to experiment, but you can expect some leaps and bounds in the near future.
360 video still has that shiny new allure on it.
Now, it’s important to mention that just because 360 video is on the rise—albeit somewhat slow rise—that doesn’t mean that it’s right for every single person, brand, or marketer. In the end, that depends on what you do, your mission, your primary objectives, and the particular kinds of viewers you’re trying to reach. And even if it is a good fit for you, then you should still only use it when the content fits the form. That kind of viewing experience needs to be motivated.
But the bottom line is that while 360 video hasn’t yet taken off the way many thought it would, make no mistake, it’s still headed in the right direction, and the good news is that it still has that fresh appeal. Because it hasn’t skyrocketed in popularity yet, viewers are still attracted to the sheer novelty of it at the moment.
So, get it while the getting’s good, if possible, and if not, then it may be time to start thinking about what you need to do to make it so. That way, when this 360 video thing finally does blow up, you’ll be ready to reap to benefits.
About Us: KVibe Productions, one of the top NJ & NYC video production companies creating video content of all kinds, can handle every aspect of the process. And whether it’s a commercial, a corporate video production, or a feature film, at KVibe, we always create to inspire.