“We’re in the era of digital video,” Steve Jobs once said, “and it’s a mess.”
Businesses today are using increasing amounts of video for marketing, security and training purposes, and as Jobs noted, it can get messy. The proliferation of video content creates significant storage and management challenges, and the multitude of video formats and applications all have different networking characteristics.
One way to bring order to the mess is with a video content management system (VCMS). Gartner defines VCMS as “software, appliances or software-as-a-service (SaaS) intended to manage and facilitate the delivery of one-to-any, on-demand video across internet protocols.” A VCMS effectively creates a central repository for video with special features for managing and delivering large video files with minimal impact on the network.
The VCMS market is responding to a growing need. Whether for on-demand training and tutorials, event streaming, or marketing campaigns, organizations are using more types of video for more use cases than ever before. Cisco has predicted that video will make up 82 percent of all IP network traffic by 2022.
Here are four reasons you should consider using a VCMS for your growing video content needs:
Management. As noted, VCMS creates a central repository for video. Without a VCMS, videos tend to get stored haphazardly across the environment — on local hard drives, on network or cloud servers, in online file-sharing systems, in other content management systems (CMS) such as SharePoint, or even in email systems. That makes it nearly impossible to manage and secure this content.
Storage. SharePoint and other CMS solutions were not made to support huge video files. These systems typically have a default maximum file size of 50MB — less than a 60-second video shot on a smartphone. You can manually increase the max file size, but only to a limit of 2GB, which still isn’t enough to accommodate a 30-minute training video. A VCMS can handle large video files by streaming the video at multiple bitrates and by caching videos at various point in your network. This allows reliable video playback with minimal effect on network capacity.
Transcoding. There are a dozen or more common file formats for digital video, including AVI, MP4, MKV and MOV, and a file saved in one format may not be playable on many devices. Typically, that would require someone to manually transcode the file — decode the compressed video from one format and re-encode it to another. An ACSM features eliminates this error-prone manual process with automatic transcoding.
Searching. In text-based content management systems, you can only search on file names or on metadata that has been manually entered. A VCMS can not only search on these criteria but can search inside the video itself. Optical character recognition enables the VCMS to search for recognizable text in the video, as well as any annotations, and then fast forward to that point.
A VCMS can also work in concert with your contact center platform to enhance the customer experience. This is particularly true for customer support — video can convey step-by-step instructions for operating a product or troubleshooting an issue more easily than a human representative. Self-service tools can even allow customers to access videos on common questions, enabling tech support agents to focus on more complex problems.
Informative and well-executed videos create value for organizations, staff and customers. A VCMS can help ensure the orderly collection, management and delivery of your video assets.