I recently read an IDC Whitepaper about the 360º Approach to Video. I've written about companies using a 360º approach to define marketing strategies and was definitely interested in IDC's opinion on video. I consider video one of many tools that any company can use to connect and communicate with customers, partner or employees. Video is memorable and is used for executive communications, customer education, employee training, product demos, customer testimonials and more. Video is personal and can be consumed live or on-demand in the form of streaming media, webinar or teleconference.
The IDC whitepaper, which is sponsored by Online Video Platfrom vendor Kyte, primarily highlight features of privately funded Kyte. However, it also touches on some relevants shifts in the market place:
1. Websites have become more interactive. The days of one-way communication are gone and customers or consumers have an expecation for enticing, visually appealing, interactive sites.
2. Video is everywhere. This means video is on your website, on YouTube or Vimeo channels, on Facebook,on mobile devices and many other locations or devices.
3. Content comes from many sources. While companies produce a lot of their own content (i.e., executive communications, product training, ads, customer testimonials, etc.), they also invite customers to submit their own user-generated content
If you are thinking about how to incorporate video into your communications strategy. Consider the following tips:
1. Purpose. What are you communicating with the video? Are you educating, informing, inviting, or sharing? These are all different types of stories and each story may be best told using different styles. For example, if your video is to share your quarterly financial status, this is likely a professionally produced event with a well structured script. However, if your are sharing information about an upcoming event or new product, you might decide that authenticity and personality are more important. While you still have a script the style of the video may be more casual. Alternatively, you may invite customers to share their experiences at an event or training. They thoughts could be capture live and in person or via video uploads to a defined site. If you define your goals for using video, it will make it easier to make decisions about what kind of content to create. Tip: Align purpose and video style.
2. Customer. Where and how will your customers consume your video? Are they in an office, at home or on the go? Will they access content using their PC or a mobile device? What operating system, browser, video player or video codecs will these devices use? Is there an expection for live or social network interaction? Understanding the answers to these questions, will help define the requirements for any online video solutions that you consider. Tip: Undertanding your target audience and their communication needs will drive business and technical requirements.
2. Infrastructure. How will you handle video content? Will you produce and manage your video assets on an in-house system or will you leverage an online service? In either case, consider its features and functionalities (i.e., codecs supported, bitrates, end user interface, ease of use, server requirements, metadata model, social/community features, digital rights management, analytics and reporting, etc.) related to your goals. In addition, consider how it will integrate with other enterprise applications, impact on corporate network, level of expertise required and support models. Tip: Align infrastructure requirements to your goals to identify the relevant solution.
Content is valuable. Video is memorable. Create a valuable and memorable online video strategy thinking about who your customers are, where they are and how will you need to be able to share video content with them. For a list of leading online video platform vendors check out: www.streamingmedia.com, www.onlinevideo.net ir www.vidcompare.com.
How are you using video to communicate your story?
What's your perspective?