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3 min read

Part of a series on what is going to happen with online video in 2019.

What is interactive video?

Interactive video has been around in some form for years. For me it is any form of video that you interact with directly.

Screengrab of YouTube CardsThe interaction goes beyond sharing, commenting or liking and occurs directly within the video. 

YouTube tried to encourage it with annotations and ultimately their card feature recently allowing for links and polls to be included. This however is still somewhat limited.

Vidyard put together a great demo years ago to show the huge range of what could be accomplished with it.

Interactive video has so many outlets to create engaging content:

  • Include live social media feeds in videos
  • Add products from the video directly to a basket
  • Call to actions or in video sign-up forms
  • Comedic popups
  • Choose your own adventure style videos

If this is old why is it relevant

Although the capability has been around for while it has been limited to video marketing platforms like Vidyard.

In the last few years both paid for and free platforms have started to integrate some of this feature set.

Vimeo now offers calls to action and email gates and Wistia offers the same throughout a video. All of the social platforms are creating more native interactive content such as polls, lead magnet forms and buttons in news feed, creating lists or tagging specific products.

Example case study by Wieden + Kennedy

It is less about passively watching and more about participating in the experienceThe increase in social media and mobile has led to people expecting to be able to interact with content at a deeper level. It is less about passively watching and more about participating in the experience.

A study from SnapApp a couple of years ago showed that marketers were getting 66% more engagement from interactive video.




Interactive video is coming

With the functionality becoming more freely available I predict that 2019 is the year that we will see this content come into its own.

If you’d like advice on how to use it then please get in touch.

Integrating interaction into your video is now easier than ever meaning it can be achieved without huge additional expenses. Using it as part of your strategy in 2019 will mean you are seen as innovative and ahead of your competition.

The downside

One of the major reasons that interactive video hasn’t yet hit the big time is that it hasn’t been available on some mobile devices (Apple we are looking at you).

With YouTube updating its annotations to cards a couple of years ago the promise of interactivity on mobile videos has been proven and is now gaining traction.

At the moment though interactivity, for the most part, is only available on non-mobile devices.


Next in the ‘Future of Online Video 2019’ series will be ‘What size should your video be in 2019?


For more information about Smarter Video take a look here.

Please get in touch and let me know what you would like to learn or read about.

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