10 Key Takeaways from #VidCon 2015 for Latino and Multicultural Content Creators
Our DiMe Media and Hispanicize teams just returned from our first visit to #VidCon 2015 in Anaheim, the annual convention that brings video content creators together with their fans. If you’re a creator, agency or brand you know that the multicultural video content space has been evolving at warp speed so it was great to meet with industry leaders and a bunch of creators over the course of three intense days. Below are 10 insights we gleaned for Latino and multicultural content creators from VidCon 2015.
Multicultural Content Creators should stay free from exclusive contracts with Multi-Channel Networks. Unless a Multi Channel Network is offering you a GUARANTEED mid six figure salary, think twice about signing exclusive deals with them. It seems that the prevailing new wisdom from many video content creators is that it’s often best to keep all opportunity doors open because exclusive deals often limit you. This is one of the fundamental reasons why DiMe Media decided not to compel content creators to work exclusively with us. For Latino and multicultural content creators exclusivity is especially bad because niche category creators often have more limited budgets and opportunities. Bottom line: Play with everybody and you will make much more money. Let the networks fight to get you the best opportunities possible.
Opportunities abound for Latino and multicultural creators niche. When we looked around #VidCon we found many opportunities for content creators who are in the multicultural-related niches. Latino and multicultural content creator have unique voices and perspectives that are especially valuable because they are both severely under-represented and related to the demographic growth of the nation. The great news is that if you produce smart, high production value content, chances are you will be able to at least earn a living from your niche voice. Frankly, from the point of view of DiMe and even operating the Hispanicize event like we do, I think demand for good video content creators outstrips supply. Dale!
The broadcast networks are hurting but digital is thriving. A common theme I heard in a number of panels was that dollars are shifting in big chunks from broadcast TV to digital online TV. For the past number of years broadcast is losing audiences by a count of 4 percent per year. There’s never been a better time to be a content creator – or an agency serving those brands. Adding complexity to the problem is that some of the shows broadcasters are producing for TV do not necessarily play well in the small or mobile screens.
Content Creators Can Monetize All the Video Platforms: Industry leaders from the founding MCNs acknowledge that what’s interesting about video today is that it is much more dynamic than when YouTube was the only video platform around. Anecdotally Vine and Instagram are definitely the most popular video platforms to be monetized in the multicultural space but not lagging far behind are now SnapChat, Periscope and Meerkat. VidCon speakers themselves said that they were very intrigued about the latter two as they are in their infancy but growing fast and full of promise. Several content creators even spoke how they are “versioning” their paid projects so they can maximize revenue they’re generating across multiple platforms.
2015 is the year of Mobile, Mobile, Mobile… YouTube and other tech players kept emphasizing how they are all obsessing about how video is displayed, created and shared through mobile. The message for content creators is clear: Make whatever your creating look great on the small screens because that’s where YouTube, Facebook and other platforms are razor focused on.
…But Mobile is still not being properly monetized by ANYBODY! The big and extremely vexing contradiction about mobile is that while it is definitely super important to everybody, it is also much harder to monetize. The CPMs that correlate to dollars on computers typically are pennies to the dollar on mobile. Industry pros agreed this will evolve quickly this year but they admit they don’t know who’s going to solve this dilemma or who will be innovating the solution.
A major Facebook video announcement is coming! Interestingly Facebook did not participate at VidCon but that may be because they didn’t want to invite premature questions about a major video play the industry expects them to reveal soon. Everybody is expecting Facebook’s video distribution and monetization platform to be unveiled shortly and to broaden the opportunities for content creators to monetize their video work even further. Two additional expectations: 1. In the short term Facebook video will not disrupt YouTube or steal its roster of creators devoted to that platform and 2. Facebook is likely to invest in spotlighting super star content creators whose primary platform of choice is Facebook. Los Pichy Boys and other major video partners of ours are strong on Facebook so that’s great for DiMe Media!
And speaking of Facebook video… Although Facebook video is doing good in terms of generating views more than 70 percent of all Facebook videos are RIPPED. Youtubers and other creators are taking notice and seeking ways to take back ownership of their content. By the way, Facebook skews stronger toward younger audiences and women. YouTube video skews younger and more male oriented.
5 Seconds Ads May soon Displace 30 second ads. Some of the boldest predictions is that in the immediate future 30 second pre-roll ads are going to be increasingly displaced by 15 second and even 5 second ad. Audiences are becoming increasingly intolerant of online ads and major digital networks are pushing for shorter and shorter ads.
Where are the multicultural female Viners? Our team spent a lot of time running into different Latino and African American creators but one distinct thing you can’t ignore is that with few exceptions (Maya in the Moment being one of them) most of the Latino and African American Viners we encountered were consistently men. Sounds like a terrific opportunity for Latina content creators!