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234 Is The Magic Number

What’s so special about the number 234 in today’s world?

Is it the number of times you’ve viewed your favourite movie?

Is it the number of times you’ve forgotten what you went to the grocery store for?

Or is it the number of times you check your phone daily to see if someone has messaged you?

Actually, 234 is the number of versions that Disney has to create of every single film it produces! 234?? Why on earth would they need that many versions? Well, one primary reason is to accommodate the different aspect ratios of the various distribution channels: cinema, broadcast and streaming. In addition, Disney has to supply versions of its movies in many different languages for worldwide distribution.

If 234 is the number of versions of the film, can you imagine how many versions of the promotional video content for each film need to be created? In addition to the complications listed above, add differing cultural nuances and the formats/compression required for social platforms.

So how much of a challenge does this pose for an average business? How many versions of their video content will they have to make? How can they navigate the complexity of such a fragmented distribution landscape? How do they manage all of the versions they need to create? And how do they even begin to address the problem of piracy?

Breathe a sigh of relief: the average business won’t have to create 234 versions but they may need to create 15 or 20. A TV ad will have different parameters to video content targeted at social sharing; and different versions may need to vary in length. Therefore, the process is still very complicated to manage and measure. But there’s no escaping it because the pressure is on for all businesses to become content creators and publishers.  

“Consumers now expect a continuous delivery of new media content as well as a seamless experience on different devices and platforms. This has required media companies to revolutionise their workflows to increase speed and avoid inefficiencies.” — IABM, March 2018.

Fortunately, it’s technology to the rescue! It is now possible for people who are new to video production and who aren’t techie experts to create, collaborate on and distribute content in an easy, user-friendly way. You don’t need to be concerned about different formats, aspect ratios, adding subtitles, or any of that other complicated stuff. Overcast CEO Philippe Brodeur would be delighted to explain more — feel free to contact him on philippe@overcasthq.com.

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