3 Video Trends for 2016

By Tim Bradley

2015 was a great year for online video – just check out the excellently crafted and entertaining #YouTubeRewind video. And there’s no signs of the momentum slowing as we enter 2016. From a communication professional’s perspective, I’d like to offer-up three trends that will likely have the greatest impact on how video will influence the industry in 2016.

1. Mobile Video

50% of video views will be via mobile in 2016. And more specifically, the biggest video platform of them all and the one that reaches more 18-49 year-olds than any cable network in the U.S., YouTube, supports that more than half of their video views come from mobile devices. Adults in the U.S. spend an average of 5.5 hours watching video each day, with 1 hour and 16 minutes of that on digital devices. Mobile video should be the biggest consideration for online communicators, especially in public relations and content marketing.

2. Attention Spans and Viewing Habits

Mobile devices and their connected counterparts (aka TVs) will continue to contribute to video viewing behaviors and ultimately increased attention spans. 81% of consumers watch videos longer than 10 minutes, and 65% watch videos longer than 30 minutes. Holistically, the number of hours people spend watching videos on YouTube has increased by 60% year-over-year. For mobile YouTube audiences, the average viewing session is now greater than 40 minutes. One interesting tidbit to note is that the weather can actually impact viewing habits; viewers watch 29% longer in cold weather while consumers watch 6x more video content on mobile devices during warm weather.

3. Demand and Advertising

According to Cisco’s staggering numbers, video traffic will be 69% of all consumer internet traffic in 2017 and could reach 80% by 2019. Fortunately, video converts better than any other medium according to approximately 70% of marketing professionals, likely due to the fact that the average click-through-rate for video advertisement is higher than any other digital advertisement.


YouTube’s mobile revenue has doubled year over year, and according to an eMarketer study, mobile ad spend will top $100 billion which accounts for more than 50% of the digital market. Despite all this, there’s still a huge opportunity for digital content marketers and advertisers in 2016, as only 24% of brands are using online video to market to consumers.

Ultimately, video will have a remarkable role in how audiences engage online, as well as greatly influence content marketing and advertising budgets in 2016. Research shows 60% of companies who have a documented content marketing strategy rate themselves highly in terms of effectiveness, so it’s very important to have a documented video strategy for – and proceeding into – 2016.