The Mario Blog
So 2017 was really NOT the year of video……

No doubt about it: audiences like to see videos. What kind? For how long? That’s another story.


Because of the Thanksgiving Holiday in the United States, we will take a break to enjoy turkey and pumpkin pie with the family in Tampa, Florida. TheMarioBlog will resume Monday, Nov. 27.




I have been thinking about video the past few days, as I did a presentation in Buenos Aires for the WAN IFRA Latin America Digital Media 2017 conference, followed by a morning spent with the team of Clarin, one of the leading Argentine newspapers, which has a successful TV operation reporting news around the clock.

While my message to that group was about the importance of linear, visual storytelling, which, of course, could include video as part of its visual assets, the Clarin staffers in the room were asking specific questions about how to incorporate videos into their reports.

The telephone is not television, I reminded them.  Video spots that are more than perhaps 35 seconds will probably be too long.  Segmenting the videos may work better for the phone Just like it is not acceptable to take a long story prepared for print and “stuff” into a mobile platform, the same applies to content prepared for TV that is then presented on the small screen of a telephone.


Video and advertising

Apparently, and based on this piece in Digiday, 2017 has not been the year some thought it would be for video, particularly advertising video. The reasons given for the lackluster performance of video vary, but here is one mentioned in the article which I like:

Take video. Too often, publishers create the video but don’t design their sites with it in mind, cramming pages with other ads that compete for attention and bandwidth, said Brian Rifkin, co-founder of digital video player company JW Player. Then, there are all the things to get right on the sales and ad operations side, such as matching the right video format to the right device and making sure the ad meets the advertisers’ specs for viewability. Success in digital media is about nailing the details, not getting the headlines.Publishers need to create good content, make sure there’s intent to watch, focus on the user experience.”

I agree that this is true not just for advertising but for editorial use of video generally.  In some instances, the rush to use video prompts editors to use videos that do not add much to a story, and the audience perceives that.

I like how The New York Times, The Guardian and The Daily Telegraph sometimes use videos with no audio, for example.  I also like the short videos that contribute to the storytelling, but do not overwhelm it or repeat what the narrative tells us. It requires a good editor to maintain a balance on how much of the story is told via words and photos, and with video. Take a look here at The Times use of video in this cinematographic essay version of a story that follows linear visual storytelling:

The Times Video section offers interesting videos, but the content here is especially tailored to be presented via video:



According to the Digiday piece:

Publishers won’t necessarily give up on video, but 2018 will see a fine-tuning of their approaches and a recognition that they can’t live on advertising alone.

“Mobile video will be a great business opportunity one day, but that day has not fully arrived,” said Bryan Goldberg, founder of Bustle. “This is a marathon. Digital media companies need to pace themselves.”

Video has a place in the storytelling process, but I agree that we perhaps have not found the best fit for it in terms of its integration as part of routine stories. Maybe 2018 will be, indeed, the year that we begin to give video its proper place, especially for consumption on mobile devices.



Those Black Friday sales

Surprise! If you live in the US, you know that the Friday after Thanksgiving is all about sales and getting special deals from stores everywhere.

However, I never saw newspapers joining the Black Friday bargains, until now. The New York Times joins Black Friday!



A rarity for the NY tabloids

The two New York City tabloids are big rivals. The New York Post and New York Daily News compete for attention everyday in the streets of Manhattan. Not an easy market. Highly competitive.  They sometimes agree on the same lead story but very seldom carry the same headline. It happened Wednesday, Nov 22






Mario’s Speaking Engagements



April 18-19, 2018-Newscamp ,Augsburg,  Germany.





May 26, 2018Associacion Riograndense de Imprensa, Univesidad de Santa Cruz (Unisc), Brazil



June 3-6, 2018The Seminar, San Antonio, Texas.




Our digital transformation workshops

If you would like to find out more about our workshops for digital transformation, email me:

I will be happy to answer your questions and provide more information. Our workshops are offered in both English and Spanish.



TheMarioBlog post #2739

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