The use of video content in the coverage of news stories by online media websites has jumped by a third in the last year to 85 percent according to the 2011 Web Influencers Survey by vide production company DS Simon.

The third annual survey of web media companies, including sites run by television, radio, newspapers, magazines and web media organizations, reveals an increasing use of in-house as well as externally developed video content to support their online reporting.

Eighty-four percent of respondents indicated they use third-party created video in combination with in-house generated content; a three percent increase in the last year. Radio station websites led the pack with 94 percent use of externally produced video; followed by magazines (93 percent), newspapers (86 percent) and web media (80 percent). TV stations websites trailed other media with just 63 percent usage of externally developed video content; likely due to their repurposing of content developed for their over-the-air and cable broadcasts.

“The 2011 Web Influencers Survey illustrates the shift from textual or static communications to video communications by media websites,” said Douglas Simon, president and CEO of DS Simon. “It appears that almost all forms of media have transformed themselves into online television networks. It appears this trend will continue to accelerate given the response to our question of whether web media companies planned to increase their use of video footage.

“Given the high percentage of video accepted from external sources, this should prove to be a significant opportunity for companies, brand marketers and public relations firms to help these media outlets with relevant and quality video footage.”

Media sites prefer completed videos to other video content: Site owners preferred fully produced videos (57 percent) first; b-roll footage (49 percent); and sound bites last (47 percent). Variations by media type were dramatic with TV sites almost universally preferring b-roll footage (98 percent) compared to newspapers, which cared little about b-roll (29 percent) but much preferred completed videos (71 percent).