Disappearing Media

Ready or Not, Disappearing Media is Here

By Staff Writer
In September 19, 2014

No, the title is not a trick. Disappearing media is actually “a thing” and it looks like it is becoming a trend across the industry, until it disappears of course. Disappearing media is a message that either disappears once it is seen or after a given amount of time – unless someone is quick enough to grab a screenshot. The biggest contributor of disappearing media is kind of a no-brainer. It’s social media. So let’s start with a little reality check about the modern media landscape as it relates to social media. Here are some jaw-dropping stats about the shelf life of social media posts:

Then there’s SnapChat, the photo messaging app that lets users snap, send, view and laugh before it disappears into never-never land. And believe it or not, SnapChat is not new; it has been around since 2011, and its recent growth spurt has brought it into the limelight.

“SnapChat Stories are now getting 1 billion views daily, while 760 million disappearing photos and videos are sent daily.”
-Business Insider

Short-form media mogul and first viral SnapChat Star, Jerome Jarre, banks $35,000 for each 10-second SnapChat video he creates for brands. Jarre says some 1 million people see his Snapchat messages within hours, while on Vine it can take days to build that kind of engagement. Jerome says he still likes Vine, but when it comes to SnapChat, “I just see a huge growth happening.”

Facebook has noticed the importance of disappearing media and has recently announced that they are testing disappearing posts. The new feature will let users develop a post and then designate a time for it to expire and ultimately disappear.

“We’re running a small pilot of a feature on Facebook for iOS that lets people schedule deletion of their posts in advance”
-Facebook Spokesperson

This new feature is most likely another effort to break into the disappearing media race that SnapChat has been dominating. Slingshot, their first attempt seems to have fallen short since its launch in the app store in June.

Media consumption is at an all-time high thanks to the rapid growth of mobile devices, but yet the media messaging is getting shorter and shorter. Who’s to blame for consumers’ decreasing attention spans? Multi-screen viewing, media fatigue and mobile accessibility are all contributing factors to our shorter attention spans.

“According to Locket’s data, on a given day, the average user checks his or her phone 110 times per day, with its highest frequency users unlocking their home screens many times more.”

People with smartphones check their Facebook pages an average of 14 times each day. I can definitely relate to this statistic. In fact, I am probably way above that average, and I’m sure many of you are too. We love checking in and seeing what our friends are up to. And each time we access a social medium like Facebook we are consuming media and marketing messages that will disappear from our feed in less than 2 hours. Our media consumption is now constant, but in bite-size pieces that we may never see again.

David Berkowitz, the CMO at MRY, recently wrote an article for Ad Age on disappearing media in which he discusses the opportunity marketers have in front of them to leverage the fleeting nature of today’s media landscape. According to David:

“Anything worth sharing is worth consuming only immediately after it’s shared.”
- Ad Age

In a world where consumers are constantly being bombarded with Facebook ads and posts, display ads, outdoor billboards and so on, we as marketers have a chance to shine when it comes to disappearing media. By developing 10 seconds of marketing gold that is highly targeted, entertaining, disruptive, and most importantly, share-worthy, we have the opportunity to capture the ever decreasing attention spans of our audience. Marketers who embrace this new fleeting media landscape and create meaningful work will win in the end. So jump on board because ready or not, here comes disappearing media.

Staff Writer

So who is this mysterious staff writer? Could be anyone really, as long as they meet our very strict criteria. 1) Worked with us in one capacity or another. 2) Have something pretty interesting to say. 3) Want to use our blog to say it. See? Told ya they were strict!