VIDEO NUMBERS: Your 2023 short form video data breakdown

There’s been another splurge of short form video data from the nice people at Ofcom.

Like a brass sextant to a sailor, data helps you set a course across the troubled waters of the media landscape. 

So you can never have too much data.

Here’s some cherry pickings from the Ofcom Media Nations 2023 report. I’ve left TV at Netflix viewing off this round-up as being largely irrelevant to public sector comms people.  

Useful UK short form video data 

Short form video is classed as being less than 10 minutes in length.

People in the UK spend on average 46 minutes a day watching short form video.

Under 34s and teenagers’ short form video use is almost indistinguishable. For seven to 15 year olds this is 76 minutes a day. For 16 to 34 year olds it is 74 minutes a day.

Snapchat and TikTok dominate for 15 to 24s with 52 minutes a day for Snapchat and 58 a day for TikTok.

Instagram video is most popular with 15 to 24s with 25 minutes a day.

Facebook video is watched most watched by 48 per cent of 35 to 44-year-olds.

Snapchat hasn’t cut through to over 24s with less than eight per cent watching video on the platform.

Scotland watches the most video at 4 hours 53 across TV, video on demand, subscription and short form video. That’s 42-minutes more than Northern Ireland, 11 minutes more than the Wales average and 27 minutes more than the UK average.

YouTube remains the biggest short form video channel in the UK watched 79 per cent of 18 to 24-year-olds, 63 per cent of 25 to 34 year-olds, 58 per cent of 35 to 44-year-olds, 61 per cent of 45 to 54-year-olds, 50 per cent of 55 to 64-year-olds and 49 per cent of over 65s.

Public sector people will find what short-form video content people watch useful.

The how to guide tops the list watched by 64 per cent which narrowly keeps news from the top spot. This no doubt reflects the greater use of short video by news organisations. The BBC, for example, have booming numbers on TikTok.

We are also watching what real people are doing (59 per cent) while 54 percent are watching what friends and family are doing. 

Music on 54 per cent is the fifth highest. Going back 10 years this was the single most popular genre showing that what we watch is evolving.    

Influencers (48 per cent) and companies we follow (39 per cent) represent proven ways that organisations can reach people. The public sector would do well to look at working with influencers to reach an audience. Big brands do it but they have the cash to grease the wheels. This isn’t something that the cash-strapped public sector does much of. 

TikTok users on average watch 28 minutes of films on the channel every day.

TikTok’s overall audience has risen by 45 per cent over the past 12-months.
5.2 million 5 to 24-year-olds watch an hour of TikTok every day.

YouTube Shorts is a secretly successful format. At least a third of all demographics are watching the portrait-shaped 9:16 format which is wrapped in with YouTube itself. This rises to 60 per cent with 13 to 17-year-olds.  

The largest demographic watching You Tube short form clips are 18 to 24 with 65 per cent. However, a majority of 25 to 54 year olds are also watching on the platform.  

All this points tio YouTube being a remarkably resilient platform and the emerging YouTube Shorts being a place to post 9:16 video. One quick health warning. Don’t finish off an edit with TikTok music and think you can download it and cross post it to Reels and YouTube Shorts, too. You have a licence to use the clip in TikTok and that’s it. You risk being persued by rights holders who are very good at doing this.

I help deliver training to comms people on how to plan, shoot, edit and post effective video on ESSENTIAL COMMS SKILLS BOOSTER as a general video course and ESSENTIAL TIKTOK & REELS.

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