How to Produce 200 Videos
For the Channel
Max Wilson, Director of Marketing at WE-CAN Technologies, is responding to a request by the executive team to develop a plan to make 200 videos to use with the channel, (Chapter One).
They had five questions for Max to answer.
- What is the right number of videos and why?
- Knowing that we need volume production, how do we do it?
- How do we make decisions about the value versus the cost of 200 videos?
- How will we collaborate with our channel partners to use the videos?
- What does an operating plan look like, including a budget?
Max already sent an email explaining the logical volume drivers, (Chapter Two), and how he estimated that 200 videos is pretty close to the right number.
Max sent the following email to Jim Everett, VP of Marketing at WE-CAN to explain how volume production will work. He expected Jim would review then forward the email to the executive team.
I have been putting together the key points that the executive team needs to understand about a volume video production process. This should give them some confidence that the strategy to produce 200 videos for the channel strategy is viable.
Publishing Production: Knowing that we have to produce videos in volume provides a context for organizing the work. Our production model will be similar to that used by publishers.
The work is guided by four principles.
1. Customer and Content Frameworks Drive the Process: Customer and content frameworks represent the documented market research and experience working with our customers to provide solutions to their problems.
A customer and content framework includes: buyer personas, defined customer problems we address, the questions buyers need to have answered, our understanding of competitive alternatives, and our messaging to support the buyer.
Targeting the development of content for the channel also means that we will collaborate with the channel partners in developing these frameworks to include their perspectives and market understanding.
The customer and content frameworks represent the core input into content production that guides the quality and relevance in support of the volume. This up-front work is important to the movement away from the costly traditional point production of content. In a point production there is a project leader or director that guides the deliverable vision through all production activities.
The customer and content framework provides this conceptual continuity but allows the publishing production process to structure work steps and the use of resources to achieve efficiencies of scale.
For more information on content frameworks as part of an enterprise content strategy, follow this link.
2. Operating Efficiency is Central to the Production Process : Publishers have to keep costs down while delivering a high volume of content.
Their production operations are similar to a manufacturing job shop. Production is designed into work cells that maximize the efficiency of time and resources. Typically work is spit into production planning, knowledge acquisition, editing, creating, deploying, assembly and delivery, and tracking performance.
The holistic approach to content clearly defines the necessary inputs and outputs of each work step while keeping them independent to optimize the use of skilled resources. Each work step has a set of best practices that contribute to efficiency and effectiveness.
Unlike the traditional point production process that focuses on creating the end use case deliverable the publishing process focuses on moving knowledge through the various states of readiness to be used in a variety of deliverables.
At most work stages the final deliverable format or use case is unknown. The customer and content framework provides the context for each work cell advancing knowledge readiness. Go here for more insights and a short video on the content supply chain publishing process..
3. Empower Front Line Users: Front line content users are in the best position to know how to touch buyers with the right content. Front line users should be able to assemble use case content by leveraging pre-built modules.
Determining what modules to pre-build is driven by the customer and content framework detail of buyer information requirements. Use cases could involve lead generation, nurturing education, sales call follow-up, or training. Prebuilt modules also allow for different formats such as audio podcasts, videos, presentations, text for speeches, articles, blogs or e-books. Most organizations find that the existence of pre-built content modules triggers new and innovative ways to touch buyers.
As I explained in my previous email estimating the channel volume, content is developed in three types of modules.
Core modules represent specific answers to customer questions designed for a specific target audience.
Variant modules leverage core modules but focus on different target audiences. These mostly drive the same conceptual points but have different narratives to increase audience relevance.
Extension modules are designed to provide situational context to core or variant modules. Extensions are frequently developed by front line users to personalize content. An example would be a sales person personalizing an introduction to two or three modules supporting decision criteria for a buyer to share internally.
Developing modules to support the channel will include allowing partners to create extensions of our content by incorporating their messaging content. Our approach to the channel will need to include training and support in creating extensions. This support will also leverage our publishing production approach to keep their cost low and easy to use.
4. Database Disciplines are Absolutely Required: Content production is a multi-dimensional problem.
In addition to the multiple dimensions defined in the customer content framework the multi-stage production process also requires management of raw to finished work products. Modules that are reused in multiple ways need a way to manage the source modules to provide consistent updating.
Content assets need to be searchable at a detailed level, such as by key words or phrases, and they need to be accessible in a controlled and secure manner. Just as important, content needs to be able to work with a variety of publishing tools and delivery methods.
A content inventory is necessary at the module and use case level to support ease of use by front line users.
Database disciplines provide important benefits. They enable production efficiency and facilitate end user adoption. Database disciplines allow content asset life to be extended from a few months to a few years by enabling module maintenance. They also facilitate tracking of modular asset use adding intelligence to the understanding of the buying process and content effectiveness. Database disciplines facilitate the use of co-branding templates and segregation of partner content.
There are a variety of tools available to support database disciplines. Many companies use multiple tools to take advantage of the particular strengths of individual tools. While it is important to understand technology requirements the selection of supporting tools is secondary to the importance of putting the right process in place. For more insights on the positioning of technology read this blog: It’s so easy to buy technology.
While we can go much deeper into the operating dynamics of a publishing process I believe these four principles will provide an appreciation for how efficiencies of scale can be developed. With these efficiencies the strategy will be viable. The next question on how to make decisions regarding the value versus the cost of the channel video strategy will take this point further.
Director of Marketing, WE-CAN Technologies