With the continued multiple waves of the pandemic, video consumption has reached new heights in the past two years. With everyone locked in their homes, brands have decided to exploit online platforms like never before. As people sit indoors sipping tea, consuming video content has become the primary source of entertainment for most of us. After Tiktok was banned in India in June 2020, short video apps like Moj, MX TakaTak, Roposo, and Josh have filled the void and have come a long way in the past year and a half. However, Instagram Reels continues to enjoy the biggest pie while YouTube has also stepped forward in the short video war chest. India’s short video industry is expected to reach 500 million users out of the current 250 million by 2025.
With the growth of short video apps and increasing user interest in consuming short format videos, over-the-top video (OTT) platforms have started to feel the heat and weaker engagement. Amazon recently launched the Amazon Mini TV to take advantage of the first wave of short videos and boost user engagement. Flipkart e-commerce platform has also partnered with ShareChat-owned Moj short video platform to introduce commerce through videos. Snapchat has been producing shorter original series for some time as well, and late last year, OTT giant Netflix started experimenting with a new stream of fun TikTok-like videos in its mobile app.
Short videos provide separate and fragmented content consumption, unlike the long form which requires additional planning time before consumers engage in content consumption. Consumption of short videos is well suited for killing the fragmented leisure time readily available with most of us in daily life. Easier AI and camera tools have made it very convenient for anyone to constantly innovate and create diverse content with minimal effort. In addition, partnering on short videos and promoting brand awareness is very straightforward and makes monetization easier for content creators. “We have already seen the paradigm shift from consumption of movies to consumption of web series. The web series format is conventionally long form horizontal content that is not suitable for the immersive mobile experience. A smartphone is meant to be held upright in most cases. Besides fragmented consumption with almost no planning time to watch content and creativity merged with trending music, the vertical video viewing experience makes short videos more engaging and compelling for bezel-less mobile devices. The future of the web series is in vertical format binary sized episodes suitable for mobile consumption and this will reinvent OTT gaming, ”says Fandawm co-founder Pushpendra Singh.
Fandawm is an Indian short video content production startup that actively prioritizes the principles of the creator economy through short videos, brand reach and musical originals. Fandawm was founded in 2021 by Pushpendra Singh, former vice president and head of growth and strategy at MX TakaTak and MX Player, and Snehil Narula who led creator content at MX TakaTak. Previously, Pushpendra also ran products at Amazon and Gaana. Fandawm also launched a music label, Fandawm Music Originals, to produce original, video-focused musical short singles with content creators. Fandawm’s first two songs, Kamaal Kare Tu and Besharam Jana Bewafa featured creators Rizwan Khan, Faizal Siddiqui, Rubyynna and Mahira Khan. Both songs have generated millions of views on YouTube and Instagram Reels.
Music is an integral part of the popularity of short videos and often sets new trends in short video applications. Because of this exceptional ability to create new viral trends at breakneck speed, music labels and brands love to exploit this opportunity. Today, the benchmark for musical hits has quickly shifted to popularity and short video creations, and artists are scrambling to create ripples on Instagram Reels. “Although independent music singles have been on the rise for some time, the most commercially viable music in India still comes from the movies. Sadly, it’s a booster for movies since the pandemic. With the scarcity of film production, short videos and OTT would become the main engines for the growth of music streaming. It may cause changes due to the consumption of short videos in streaming and music production. Pushpendra Singh added.
What gives short videos an advantage over conventional video and OTT content is the availability of talented, reliable and expert content creators to reach the most specialized groups targeted by many businesses these days. Creators spend a lot of time analyzing behavioral aspects of their audience and genuinely represent their target followers that many large companies struggle to reach. Globally, more than 50 million content creators impact society’s buying behavior, and the creators’ economy saw record funding of $ 1.3 billion in 2021. The economy Creators is the latest iteration of influencer-led content commerce. Consumer decisions have been influenced by blogs, memes, and podcasts over the past decade. The pandemic has catalyzed creators to become the primary engine in influencing sales and forcing companies to redefine their marketing strategy. The booming creator economy will help establish the prominence of short videos in the crowded video entertainment market.
If history is any guide, technology is changing the course of the mainstream. With this new-age phenomenon of short videos, this could be one of the most exciting new waves and era of transformation for OTT and music streaming.