Earlier this month we explored the rise of Pro-Am content, YouTube series that are being created by actors, writers, producers and directors with actual Hollywood experience and the ability to tell stories, rather than just ramble in front of an iPhone.
We further predicted that while vloggers would not disappear, the format will start to seem dated as a younger generation comes of age who sees vloggers as the programming their older siblings watched back in the day, and that vlogging overall will become closely associated with the late 00s and early 10s.
So what’s to become of vloggers? They’re going to go live. As in live streaming.
Not all of them, but a lot of them. They will fuel the future of live video, whose immediacy and interactivity seems particularly well-suited for the vlogging format. Audiences can join in and have conversations with their favorite performers in real time (and afterwards, as vloggers will have the ability to respond to comments left after the broadcast.)
The attraction of vloggers has always been that they feel like a friend, someone the audience knows well, who is letting them in on private thoughts and including them in a (one-sided) conversation. The best vloggers interact with fans, responding to comments in videos and inviting Q&As and AMAs. (Ask Me Anythings.)
That’s why live makes so much sense as the evolution of vlogging, since it basically takes everything the audience already likes and dials it up to 11.
Which platforms are best suited for vlogging? Facebook Live is the obvious one, just for the sheer number of users. (Add to that the fact that Facebook is no longer paying publishers to do live video, pushing them to higher quality, pre-recorded video and you have a nice opening for vloggers.)
At the same time, we would not discount the upcoming YouTube live platform or YouNow or potential live platforms from Instagram and Snapchat either. The latter two have much more traction with Gen Z than any other platform, and as such, should see rapid adoption if they choose to go that route.
While we see Pro-Am serving as a farm team of sorts for TV content (e.g. high production value, long-form programming, regardless of which platform it’s actually available on), live will be its own beast and its own subculture. Live vloggers and musicians will be sought after by advertisers for the same reasons they seek out today’s crop of vloggers/influencers—it gives them authenticity and a fresh voice for a younger audience that is increasingly immune to (and insulated from) traditional interruptive advertising.
Get your iPhones ready…