The message has been the same for more than two decades. It is easy to buy technology. All you have to do is write a check. Getting the technology to deliver results depends on the strategy, the vision of how a new process will be enabled, and an understanding of the skills required. The technology industry is littered with sad stories where technology got ahead of strategy. It appears marketers are still learning this lesson.
In the past month I have been in two conversations with marketers from Fortune 100 companies about the increased demands for content by their organizations. In both cases demand for video content had become a priority as well as a concern because of the cost. The first thing these marketers wanted to talk about was new technology platforms that support video production. They spoke as if the technology platform was the most important capability. They were already name dropping applications being considered.
When asked about the most significant cost drivers of video production they agreed that technology was secondary to the time and skills required to produce each video. They also acknowledged that the process of producing videos as point productions limited their useful life and their ability to be used for multiple business use cases. It became clear that the video production approach was a bigger problem than the current technology limitations.
We also discovered a problem with visions. Their perceptions of video use cases were based on their current point production approach to video production and costs. Making ten videos a year cost more than $100K before the internal cost of time and effort. They had visions of doubling or tripling the number. However, only certain use cases, such as a product launch or use in a major event, justified the time and expense. When asked what they would do if they could have 60 videos for $100K or 200 videos for $250K their perspective on time, cost, and use cases changed. They began to envision a holistic strategic approach to video production that would support many new use cases.
Using 200 videos as an example demand for videos our conversation moved to focusing on production models. Avitage offered its point of view on a publishing production model by identifying the goals a volume driven production model had to fulfill.
- Quality is important but not every video requires a Hollywood flourish.
- Time to produce videos has been too long. It must be fast, particularly involving the time of key subject matter experts.
- Cost control is critical. Budgets are not growing as fast as the demand for content. The cost curve has to demonstrate the productivity impact of volume production.
- Volume is being driven by the value derived from the new use cases buyers are beginning to expect.
- Relevance is critical in a world where buyers are bombarded with messages, most of which get quickly tuned out.
- Maintain, Share, and Reuse of videos means that they have to be able to support multiple use cases and be shared across marketing, sales, training, and channel relationships. Maintenance is necessary to extend a video’s useful life from months to years to address minor product or business changes that might otherwise make it useless.
- Language support means that videos have to easily support multiple languages in the recorded voice and possibly with any visible text.
Click on A Content Publishing Model to access a short video on how a publishing production model works.
The Avitage team then shared its perspective on how a holistic publishing model would impact technology options. Support for production is actually less important than enabling the adaptability for end users in Sales, Marketing, Training, and Channels across an enterprise to use and extend content. Conversations in all phases of the relationships with buyers, customers, and partners should be able to dynamically leverage good content through end user driven blogs, webinars, articles, presentations, podcasts, and other media.
It really is easy to buy technology. Getting to the right vision and getting alignment to that vision is almost always the challenge. For additional insights on the publishing production model, click on the blog, Four Lessons You Should Learn from Publishers.