Social Viewing: 5 Apps Making Watching Videos a Group Activity

Millennial research, Millennial insight, Millennial marketing, Gen Z research, Gen Z marketing, Gen Z insight, youth research, youth marketing

Can watching content online be a social experience? These five apps are working on it, and turning solo viewing into a party…

When we researched the current state of entertainment viewing in our Post-TV Gen trend, we found that 13-34-year-olds report watching almost 22 hours of content across all platforms and services weekly. That’s almost an entire day out of their week that they estimate they spend watching videos, TV shows, and movies. Among Gen Z, the estimate was even higher—23.4 hours per week. Often, young consumers’ disruptive entertainment habits are described in misleading ways—they’re “abandoning cable,” or “leaving TV behind”—but they’re not watching less content, they’re consuming more, watching on-the-go, in bed on their laptops, tablets, and phones, on car rides…anywhere their phones are going with them, which is everywhere.

So they’re hungry for content. But what the mobilization of entertainment has done is make much of that entertainment more solo-consumption. Gathering around a phone to watch a video can be done, but it’s not as natural as sitting around the TV screen together. Instead, watching videos and series is increasingly becoming an individual activity—but a new slew of apps is looking to change that. The idea of the social/shared/co-viewing of videos online is taking hold, with major players and startups launching new ways to turn solo-video viewing into a group experience. Here are five apps taking on social viewing, and telling young consumers to "watch together":

Millennial research, Millennial insight, Millennial marketing, Gen Z research, Gen Z marketing, Gen Z insight, youth research, youth marketingTumblr Cabana

This week, Tumblr launched Cabana, a new app to allow users to “hang out and watch stuff” digitally. The app is a combination of group video chat and video viewing: six friends can video chat simultaneously, and watch videos together at the same time. Users can create “rooms”…

 
 

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The Newsfeed

“I eat whenever I need to...I don’t follow the conventional breakfast, lunch, dinner setup.”

—Male, 29 VA

Over half of Millennials believe “money can buy happiness.” Fifty-three percent of 22-39-year-olds believe the more money you have, the happier you are, compared to 38% of Americans overall, according to Mintel. The research also shows Millennials are optimists: a little over half are confident in their financial futures, although nearly a third consider paying off credit card bills their greatest financial challenge. Considering the Ypulse financial tracker shows 59% of 18-34-year-olds have debt, we’re not surprised. (MediaPost)

Mickey Mouse Club is coming back for a new generation, and they know just where to find them: social media. Disney announced at Vidcon that the new rendition of the variety show will be released in snackable snippets on social media only. The show will search for future stars with little to no social followings, but big, undiscovered talents, such as choreography and songwriting. Disney is winning out with Millennials and this nostalgic hit should be right on brand; you can see it at the end of August on the Oh My Disney Facebook channel. (THR)

Summer camp costs more than ever before, and some parents are paying big bucks for their children to rough it. Sleepaway camps cost an average of $768 a week, up from $397 in 2005, for often less-than-luxe accommodations. Affluent parents who want their kids to “just be normal” are sending them to camps that can cost $20,000 for basic room and board that “smells a little mildewy,” where kids do their own laundry, clean their rooms, have roommates, and engage in typical camp activities—macaroni art, anyone? (MarketWatch)

Taco Bell has built brand love and a loyal fan following across digital. Their record-breaking giant taco head Snapchat lenswas just the beginning of their successful social marketing strategy, which involves treating each platform differently. The latest example is their YouTube series, Taco Tales, which includes 40 pieces of long-form content catered to their fans. They’ve accrued 10.5 million Facebook fans, 1.85 million Twitter followers, and 60,000 YouTube subscribers with their “wacky,” authentic brand voice in an effort to not just people-please, but to be themselves—which may be why they’re one of young adults’ favorite fast food restaurants.

(The Drum)

More evidence that Millennials still love analog books: They’re the most likely generation to use public libraries, according to a Pew Research Report. More than half of 18-35-year-olds have frequented a public library in the last twelve months, compared to 45% of Gen X, 43% of Boomers, and 36% of Silents. University libraries were specifically not counted, so being college-aged isn’t giving them any advantage, either. The finding goes hand in hand with Ypulse data that shows reading is 13-34-year-olds’ biggest hobby. 

“The wedding trend I have noticed is the white wedding dress being phased out and an array of colors and styles being used.”

—Female, 32, FL

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