The world of content creation ballooned during the COVID-19 pandemic, with total revenues increasing by 79% in 2020 compared to 2019. The vast majority of this growth was the result of both direct and indirect impacts of the pandemic and its associated lockdowns.
The main drivers of this growth were new end users finding entertainment at home in the form of amateur content creation, as well as existing users upgrading their equipment during lockdown periods.
Futuresource surveyed 3,768 individuals who identified as video content creators across eight countries, covering key markets in both North and South America, Europe and Asia, and found that of these video content creators, 46% were using professional camcorders throughout 2020.
Although the majority of amateur content creators use smartphones to create video content – either pre-recorded or live streamed – the number of individuals opting for professional grade hardware is growing, as successful creators choose to upgrade their equipment as they become more engaged in their craft.
Of the 46% of video creators using professional camcorders to produce video in 2020, the majority focused on live streaming over pre-recorded content. Their preferences included video game streaming, creating AR/VR/MR or other immersive video experiences – although the most popular use cases for pro camcorders varied by region.
For example, video game content was one of the key use cases for pro camcorders in the United Kingdom, whereas in the USA and China, professional camcorders were used more commonly to produce wedding videos.
Despite the annual growth in the number of content creators, there were concerns that, as users start to return to work and spend less time at home, creators’ time and investment in video production would dip. However, this has not been the case. When surveyed, 59% of creators stated that their main motivation for creating content was for fun.
This satisfaction increased throughout the pandemic, as lockdown gave more opportunity for content creators to learn and hone their skills. This led to Improvements in the quality of content produced, which embedded creators further into the market, perpetuating growth despite the number of hours spent at home being reduced. What’s more, by becoming more embedded into the professional video market, content creators are motivated to invest in better quality equipment to further improve their content.
We can already see this happening, as 58% of creators are using professional camcorders to produce their content – they are also primarily motivated by fun.
Most creators cited YouTube video reviews as the most influential factor when choosing a new product. Social media, advice from family and friends, alongside Amazon reviews were also important decision influencers.
When asked what they were looking for in a camera, image quality was cited to be the most important attribute. Therefore, as the content creator community grows in scale, creators represent a lucrative addressable market to target prosumer and professional equipment to, as and when they outgrow the capabilities of their consumer devices.
With Futuresource’s second annual Content Creator report to be published in August 2022, we’ll be tracking the development of content creator behaviours over time. This report will reveal the rapidly evolving needs of different content creator sub-groups as the segment matures and creators become more experienced with video production.
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