Video is here to stay
While 2020 accelerated the shift to video applications—with 42.8 percent of consumers using it daily or multiple times a day—the events of last year weren’t the only reason for the channel’s success: we know now that consumers enjoy using video, and in some cases even prefer it.
The top reason consumers like using video is convenience, which came in at 65.1 percent on our survey, while safety came in second at 56.7 percent.
Video also means increasing access to people and services. In fact, 43.6 percent of consumers like using video because they don’t have to drive to appointments and 43.3 percent of consumers like using video because they can meet with people in different locations at once.
As we’ve written about before, the top 3 uses of video are keeping in touch with friends and family (54.7 percent), work (42 percent), and doctor appointments (33.6 percent). These were also the top three activities (43 percent, 37.6 percent, 32.9 percentlu respectively) consumers report they will continue to use video for in the future.
Now that consumers have acclimated to the convenience of video, they are likely to continue using it after the pandemic.
2021 is the year of video innovation
Just because consumers are likely to continue to use video as we move out of the pandemic doesn’t mean that they will be satisfied with the current video solutions.
In the immediate shift to video in 2020, organizations and consumers used video to replace in-person interactions. However, video is NOT the same as in-person interactions.
When asked what they don’t like about using video applications, the top two reasons consumers reported were:
- 57.4 percent don’t feel as engaged as they do with in-person meetings
- 45.6 percent say bad video quality makes it hard to hear and see
There are two ways to do video. The first is to replicate in-person interactions. Based on these responses, it’s clear that this approach is doomed to fail over time because consumers prefer in-person interactions when directly comparing against video interactions.
However, there is a second approach to video—embrace video as its own unique digital channel and use it to enhance interactions. Companies need to not only acknowledge that video is different from in-person interactions, but also hone in on what consumers like about video, which is convenience. This means investing in high quality video applications that are customized to make consumer lives simpler.
Businesses need to reimagine their customer engagement strategy. What works in-person will not be the same as what works in the virtual world. And that is where innovation will be born.
The future is hybrid
One of the most interesting findings from the survey was that the top three things people are doing over video—keeping in touch with friends and family (54.7percent), work (42 percent), and doctor appointments (33.6 percent)—are the top three things that people are also doing in person.
While traditionally video and in-person have been thought of in “either-or” terms, these findings suggest that consumers are open to doing certain activities virtually and in-person. In a world where interactions can happen face to face and digitally, this opens the door to new forms of engagement when the physical and digital worlds are complementary to each other.
Events, for example, had to shift to digital venues due to the pandemic. While there were challenges associated with this shift, organizations were able to dramatically increase access which in turn, drew in more attendees. As we move back to an in-person world, the events industry will be looking for ways to maintain that broader audience with complementary virtual experiences to their face-to-face experiences.