The top two excuses organisations give when asked why they haven’t yet decided on a proper strategy and platform to support internal corporate videos are that it’s too difficult and it’s too expensive.
And they can be forgiven for thinking so.
For years and years, professional production companies have been charging like wounded bulls to create video content. After all, if a Hollywood blockbuster costs $100m to make, creating a quality professional corporate video was never going to be cheap.
Then along came the internet.
A corporate video couldn’t just be something sitting on the hard drive of the boss’s EA, or a VCR cassette waiting to be busted out for the next riveting induction session.
No, as anyone making video today knows, it’s content that needs to be shareable and accessible to everyone – ideally on-demand – while also having a consistent level of quality, or look and feel, regardless of where the audience is and what device they’re using.
The content also needs to be well thought-out and produced to catch people’s attention and optimise retention. And something else few people consider these days, business content presented in video format also needs to be secured.
But that’s a lot to take on board, even for big organisations with deep pockets and resources.
So how does a business of any size get started on its own internal corporate video journey?
Basically, it comes down to three questions, which we’re going to discuss here.
1- How to make the business case for turning internal comms into video?
Most importantly, there is a growing body of evidence showing that audiences retain as much as 10-times more information when it’s presented as video, compared with text, and are more likely to watch video than other forms of content.
That’s a stat bound to convince any nervous accountant the value in allocating budget to internal video.
Furthermore, when most people think about creating and managing their own professional-quality corporate videos, the first thing they imagine is having to stump up buckets of money to buy the necessary technology.
But the first thing to understand is virtually all of the technology and infrastructure needed to create and then manage the distribution of internal corporate video is stuff you’re probably already using.
The cloud, video-capable smartphones and mobile apps, social media platforms like Facebook, Instagram and YouTube are all technologies many of us use every day.
Organisations can’t risk having all of their information in the public cloud, but they can certainly access secured platforms that mimic their form and function.
2- How do you create the content in the first place?
In many ways creating video content is the easy part.
To start with, if you’re like most organisations, you’ll likely already have the necessary talent and props in the building, or partner companies that can help break through the traditional barriers for corporate content creation and enable product quality content at scale and cost-effectively. And given the fact pretty much everyone has a smartphone already in their pocket, connected to either 3G or 4G networks, shooting and sharing HD video is child’s play.
As we’ve discussed in previous blogs, the Ted Talks have set the standard for how to create impactful and enduring video content that inspires people to tune in, engage and contribute, share and retain.
Among the key reasons for the format’s success is the fact each presentation is no more than 18 minutes long.
This forces presenters to think more carefully about what they’re really trying to say and how best to say it succinctly. Applying this thinking can be powerful in the workplace, because, unlike traditional methods for internal communications and corporate training, it places the audience at the centre of the experience.
3- What do you do with video once you’ve created it?
Key to the success of any corporate video initiative is ensuring that everyone who’s meant to see it, can see it – with the same quality and resolution – regardless of where they are, on any device, and at any time.
But compared with making the business case and actually creating content, managing bandwidth hungry-video (especially if it’s HD) on existing networks is something that really makes CIOs sweat.
Thanks to the cloud, systems admins needn’t worry about having to buy additional hardware, knowing they can provide for whatever is needed and when.
But what about the network?
Content like streaming video is only ever as good as the network used to access it, so there’s no point in introducing something if it degrades overall performance.
The good news is there are several technologies to make it easier to introduce video to the corporate network, ensuring that it’s quick, easy and secure to access without the downsides.
Firstly, the longtail consumption of video on demand content means that not everyone will be watching the video at the same time. This in itself limits the impact of on-demand video being consumed on the corporate network.
For live video streaming where everyone is watching at the same time, adaptive bitrate streaming is designed to deliver the best user experience given the bandwidth connection available, so the player won’t try and shove a 1Mbps HD video down a 512kbps connection to a branch network for example.
And advances in WAN / SD-WAN optimisation have made it easier to conserve network resources by caching more information that’s already landed on the network, reducing duplication, which can be the biggest unnecessary drain on resources. Known as ‘stream splitting’ this process can make 100 users accessing a live video stream look and seem like just the one person on the network.
Last but not least, organisations looking at video as a tool for internal communications need to take security seriously.
System administrators can authenticate viewers against the Active Directory (Single-Sign-On), giving them control over viewer access to specific content, playlists or video galleries, based on existing security settings. This means the content can only be played in certain locations. Meanwhile, URL / domain ‘whitelisting’ ensures the ‘player’ can’t be copied and embedded in unauthorised domains.
After all, if the information contained in a video is important enough to capture and share in the first place, then its security should be taken as seriously as any other data in the organisation.
Viostream is Australia’s leading provider of live and on-demand video streaming solutions. Connect with us today and begin the conversation about how to bring your internal communications to a completely new level.
If you have any questions about anything in this article or want to talk more about creating your own video content call us on +61 (0)2 8007 6200.