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Video use is growing rapidly within companies of all types and sizes. Whether
for promotion or advertising, internal and external training, product demonstration,
or for ad-hoc or formal communication, companies use video to communicate. Audiences
are just as broad and include prospects, customers, partners, employees and
shareholders each consuming the video on whatever platform(s) fits at the moment
(e.g., desktop browser; mobile, IPTV, and more.)
Most companies do not have a formal approach to create and manage this video.
The lack of a formal approach, a video management strategy, results in inefficiency,
confusion, increased costs, lost opportunities, and decreased agility over time.
Managing video effectively in an organization can be simple and straightforward.
A key piece of a successful video management strategy is to employ Digital Asset
Management (DAM). DAM improves creative workflows and productivity by providing
a common, anywhere accessible platform to manage, locate, repurpose, and distribute
video along with related content and other rich media. Once employed, DAM simplifies
creation, production and delivery processes, enables new workflows and new business
opportunities, while eliminating costs throughout the lifecycle.
The Challenge of Video
Video poses a set of challenges to companies. Video is:
Generated by many different sources within and outside an organization
Available in tape and/or digital sources. Quality and formats vary greatly
Stored in a number of places (i.e., disks, tapes, file shares, databases, storage
Difficult to locate and access (unless it resides in a central digital repository
and is catalogued)
Consumed by a broad and diverse audience both internally and externally. Localization
and/or re-edits are frequently required.
Large in file size
Often copyrighted, or has rights associated with it that define proper use and
must be adhered to.
In addition, businesses are struggling with:
Tight budgets and ROI which are forcing teams to do more with less
Emerging technologies and their disparate adoption across the business, industries
Inefficient video production workflows that allow quick/easy reuse, repurposing
and distribution of video
Lack of control: video is everywhere; lower storage or equipment costs drive
ad hoc purchase and use.
The recent explosion of Facebook, YouTube, and other social media along with
powerful processors, cheap storage, greater bandwidth, and growing user expectations,
is rampantly driving businesses to utilize rich media -- specifically video
as a key communication vehicle.. This trend coupled with emerging technology
and distribution options is forcing all types of businesses to maximize and
monetize content use. Content and specifically video is now mission critical
to the organization. According to Forrester Research, by 2013, with people consuming
just one extra hour of video per day, an additional $37.5 billion dollars will
be generated for those businesses monetizing content.
Meeting the Challenge
What can you do to better create and manage video to gain efficiencies, reduce
costs and increase agility? Do you know what your company is doing with video?
Distributing it to traditional broadcast and/or online outlets?
Here are 5 steps to assess your company's use of video, and how best to begin
to manage it.
Step 1: Identify what video means to your organization
Ask your internal users how and where they use video today. What videos are
being created, produced, watched, streamed or distributed? Ask them what video
needs they might have in the future. Ask your partners and customers what information
they'd like to consume in a video format? While there may be some obvious uses
among the different kinds of business users, you may be surprised.
Step 2: Identify business requirements
No matter the industry the same approach applies. Within each organizational
1. Whether the department has a need for video
2. What video is used for or could be used for (use cases) in the department:
Internal communications: corporate training, sales communications, human resources,
External communications: sales and marketing, product training, advertising,
Production and/or product development: team and vendor communications and production
workflows; review and approval
Aggregation and distribution: delivery to web, broadcast, IPTV, cable, etc.
3. What the frequency of creation and distribution is for each case
4. Where is the video coming from (what is the source), who is the audience,
and where it is going (how it is delivered)
The answers will vary depending on the type of business and whom the business
serves but will give you a deeper and clearer picture of your company's video
Step 3: Identify fundamental commonalities, workflows and functional requirements
Typically you will find common functions and workflows exist. Most commonly,
video is identified and tagged (with "metadata," stored, searched,
edited, reviewed, digitized or transcoded into other formats, protected, rights
managed, and distributed. Next, identify what each department requires including
rough or detailed workflows, and ascertain how much video they believe they
will need to store.
Step 4 - Empower Productivity and Efficiencies
Once you have defined video use, and identified common processes, workflows
and functional requirements the next step is to increase productivity by providing
tools and capabilities to optimize creative processes and capitalize on new
Digital Asset Management enables productivity and efficiencies. It plays a key
role to provide order, streamline workflows and increase efficiencies across
The DAM system facilitates coordinated activities, and allows adoption of tools
that can quickly make a positive impact. Simply, DAM is the "tasks and
decisions" associated with ingesting, tagging, transcoding, annotating,
cataloging, storing and retrieving a video and other related media including
documents, photographs, images, audio, or other files deemed to be an "asset."
Digital asset management is the strategy and technology platform to successfully
Aligning your requirements to an appropriate Digital Asset Management solution
that can scale with your business, is the next important step. It is imperative
that you choose a solution that not only works today but will grow with you
tomorrow. Not all DAM systems are created equal: some manage video better than
others. In your selection process, you'll need to carefully consider your requirements,
use cases and key features that each of your users and stakeholders need for
their workflow, and align them with the capabilities of the DAM and the DAM
vendor. The right DAM will scale to provide the business value at each step,
and will expand that value as your use grows.
Therefore, if you have an existing system evaluate it for the key functionality
you identified and then define how best to add features or extend its utility
and capabilities. If you currently use a file structure on a server, take a
hard look at what you learned in Step 3. To manage video effectively the best
tool to use is one designed to support a basic set of core video-centric capabilities
most of which are inherent in any video competent DAM including:
Video acquisition and ingest
Transcoding and interoperability
Metadata creation, management and search
Creative workflows and tools (e.g., online editing)
Review and approval
Retrieval and play
Delivery and distribution
Digital Rights Management
Secure storage and archive management
Easy-to-use interface, with localization and/or branding
Security, with user, group and role-based functional permissions
As a productivity platform, DAM inherently provides the backbone for coordinating
and executing creative workflow processes from creation and collaboration, to
integration, repurposing and distribution of assets to the web, broadcast, publishing
and other points of distribution as required by the business. Video capability
is one feature set of the DAM.
Step 5 - Maximize Utility and Return
The platform solution you selected in Step 4 should enable improved video workflows
and interoperability with edit suites and delivery systems right out of the
gate. By utilizing a DAM, users will benefit from more options and capabilities.
Across organizations and industries, the ability to create, produce, edit and
distribute video is becoming commonplace. The value of a DAM can be seen by:
The studio who delivers a one-hour show five days a week on time and to spec.
The production team overcomes the difficulties of meeting intense deadlines
by its ability to edit video, accelerate the assembly process and compile Edit
Decision Lists (EDLs) in the DAM for final edit and packaging which frees up
valuable time. The team eliminates long legal "OK" turns by rights
management handled by the DAM and provides turnkey review and approval workflows
with no physical locale limitations.
The marketing team who was required to publish multi-media product packages
every quarter. Contending with multiple systems and process across a global
enterprise, isolated creative asset development, and varied technology adoption
and use hindered their efficiency and delivery. A DAM resulted in reduced frustrations,
decreased costs, little to no rework or recreation due to misuse of licensed
material, brand compliance, and clear marketing messaging with consistent copy
and graphic use.
The broadcaster who needed to digitize its tape archive while producing and
distributing new content. Implementation of DAM helped the broadcaster define
workflows to capture metadata early in the process improving the ability to
quickly access the right tape and/or clips. With a staged ingest process for
archived content the broadcaster was able to quickly monetize "valuable"
assets that had not been well catalogued, nor easy to locate before. Furthermore
the DAM's ability to interoperate with the edit suite as well as other devices
circumvented playout issues. Automated workflows now recognized these devices
and required formats every time.
The retailer who was shifting internal marketing and creative processes to not
only manage costs but reach customers more effectively. A DAM immediately eliminated
the cost of dubbing and shipping tapes, and provided one place for its Agency
and internal teams to work together. More exciting was the Retailer's ability
to automatically transcode and deliver content in the right format to web sites,
editors, promotional web sites and more. Time to market was reduced significantly,
workflow and collaboration was streamlined, costs were reduced, sales improved
and morale shifted significantly.
Once ingrained in an organization, DAM becomes even more powerful and provides
momentum for new advances, creativity and opportunities all leading to increased
productivity and payback. Companies who have employed DAM often find that they
can do so much more than they first envisioned, and do it even more effectively:
especially for video.
Video is a format that requires attention. Its production and consumption is
expected to grow. Follow these 5 steps, and managing video effectively today
can be simple.
About the Author
He is the vice president, Media Asset Management at North Plains Systems which provides digital-asset-management solutions.