F8: Facebook Unveils Embedded Video Player for Non-FB Websites

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EmbedVideoVideo is red-hot on Facebook, and the social network revealed its embedded video player for non-Facebook websites at its F8 global developers conference in San Francisco this week.

Facebook described its new embedded video player in a post in its developer blog:

A new full-bleed, responsive and interactive video player to embed Facebook videos on your site. The player features controls like play/pause, HD/SD toggle and full-screen mode, and also lets people like or share the video right from the player.

The social network also hinted at future plans for video in a Facebook Media blog post:

Over the coming months, we’re redesigning the video upload flow for pages with new control and customization features including expiration dates, audience restrictions and more.

Readers: What are your initial impressions of Facebook’s video-related announcements at F8?

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Gap Uses Instagram Videos to Remind Users that ‘Spring Is Weird’

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GapInstagramSpringSpring has sprung, and Gap marked the occasion with a “micro-series” of one-dozen 15-second Instagram videos.

The apparel retailer developed the “Spring Is Weird” campaign with creative agency Wieden+Kennedy New York, and the micro-series chronicles the “love story between comedian Jenny Slate and actor Paul Dano as they navigate chance encounters, first dates and spring weather.”

Some of the minds behind the campaign offered a behind-the-scenes look into their thought processes in a post on the Instagram for Business blog.

Wieden+Kennedy New York art director Cory Everett wrote:

When brainstorming around how to bring #SpringIsWeird to life with Gap, we knew it was a great opportunity to tell an integrated story, released as a series, and Instagram seemed like a perfect fit. Each episode would be able to focus on a little spring moment, like the unpredictable weather or relationships in flux, and bring it to life in a human and hopefully funny way. The challenge would be to make it so if you only saw one, it would still work as a cute standalone moment, but if you watched a string of them, you would see the whole arc of a story about a couple whose relationship blooms over the course of spring.

Gap global consumer engagement and partnerships executive Tricia Nichols added:

We love that Instagram is a place where people want to share what is happening, how they are feeling and the objects of their affection at a particular moment in time, and in the most visually appealing way. The nature of the platform lends itself well to fashion, but also to sharing things people do, discover and love.

Our goal with every initiative is to bring the brand to customers in innovative ways that bring Gap to life and highlight our latest styles. Instagram gives us the opportunity to follow each episode with a more straightforward fashion laydown, a format we know our customers and social followers love. We just wanted to draw the connection between the spots and the clothes so it would be really easy for people to get those looks.

The videos have outperformed any other video content we’ve launched on Instagram, in terms of engagement, and our paid media performance is outperforming our expectations. Some of the more interesting things we are seeing are people predicting what will happen next, asking where they can buy the products featured or just generally expressing their love for the series and the talent.

And Wieden+Kennedy New York copywriter Mike Vitiello chimed in:

It was definitely a challenge, but in a way a helpful guideline — we knew we’d only ever have time for one plot point and one joke per episode, so how you want to use that precious resource becomes the guiding thought.

Like any serial, we started with a single story line and broke it down into parts. So the development of this romance becomes a series of steps, in a way — which is kind of how it works in real life. To make sure it feels like a unified whole, we used details like callbacks and Easter eggs to help connect one episode to another, and an original score by Alessandro Tabora, as opposed to a range of songs.

Readers: What did you think of Gap’s “Spring Is Weird” Instagram video campaign?

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