We are in a golden age of video as a business tool — it’s no longer used just for marketing but for many other business functions too: sales, corporate communications, training, testimonials, and much more.
Combined with this proliferation of video benefits for enterprises, the democratisation of video has made video a “must have” rather than a “nice to have”.
Why are video files problematic?
Video, until recently, was a very specialised craft that was handled by editors and engineers. They traditionally used a MAM — Media Asset Manager — to store, share and manage their content.MAMs are different from DAMs — Digital Asset Managers — in that they deal only with video content.
What most enterprise DAM vendors won’t tell you is that DAMs were never built for managing video. They all claim that they do. But the reality is that the amount of resources, storage and compute power needed to manage video content is considerably greater than what is needed for images and documents — and ALL traditional DAMs lack the necessary technology to manage video content properly.
The thing is: now there is a need to enable business teams to manage video content as easily as images and word documents but the workflows just aren’t there.
Video files are large…ahem, very large. If you decide to work with 4K (which most brands and advertisers do), they could be ginormous! And they are complex: there are so many formats that it can be tricky to create the right format for your chosen destination (e.g. a social platform, a website, a mobile device, etc.)This is precisely why they are difficult to manage.
The result is that organisations develop workarounds. Solutions that are, frankly, okay but not really scalable. They save video content on external hard drives; store them under a desk somewhere. Share content via WeTransfer or YouSendIt. None of this is native to managing other files — but we make an exception for video.
Ultimately, that means thatfinding a video clip involves manual searching under desks for the external drive, manual scrolling through oodles of footage, and ultimately wasting a tonne of time.
Video considerations when investing in a DAM
If it’s your company’s first time investing in a DAM and you want it to manage video, then it’s best not to look at the legacy providers. Some have partnered with video specialists to better manage video content, but it is not core to what they do and this can lead to issues down the road.
When evaluating an enterprise DAM provider, make sure to assess your video needs. There are many workflows that are similar to those for images and documents, but they can’t be managed in the same way. For example, you can easily ingest a large batch of images taken at a photoshoot. But let’s say you have an hour of raw video footage — how do you plan to ingest that and how are you going to share it with your colleagues? Answer: you’ll need completely different infrastructure to an image workflow and it will likely include a cloud network if you want to do it right.
Think of your KPIs — your key needs may be finding files quickly, avoiding duplication of video files, operating from a “single source of truth”, tracking versions of projects, and outputting to multiple video file formats. These are modern video workflows that the majority of DAMs do not support.
What if you already have an enterprise DAM?
You may already have a DAM that is struggling to manage your video content. So you go to the market looking for something new. It can be confusing. Vendors will try to sell you lots of solutions:MAM (Media Asset Manager), PAM (Production Asset Manager), CMS (Content Management System), or an ECM (Enterprise Content Manager). They are all valid — but they are unlikely to be what you are looking for.
Transitioning from legacy DAM technology to something that can manage your video assets can be a real challenge. The least expensive way to do it is to integrate a video solution that can operate with your DAM. If you can’t find that, then best make the change.
Taking the leap to the cloud
There really is only one answer when it comes to managing video content: move to the cloud. When moving workflows to the cloud, the big question on people’s minds usually is: “How much is this going to cost me?”
We found that none of the tools on the market accurately answered that question. Different cloud solutions have different calculators, but they are not very accurate because they never take into account the full compute cost. For example, let’s say you have 100 TB of video stored in the cloud and you have a single archivist managing it. Then let’s imagine you have the same amount of storage, but 1,000 people all accessing it, sharing it, posting to social, etc.Same storage — very different cost!
So, we built Overcast Max Simulator to allow you to run a real-time simulation of your video workflows, which helps you to understand the costs of storing and managing your content in the cloud.
Return on investment is slightly trickier to calculate but you can read one of our business case studies, which clearly demonstrates savings in terms of time and cost in addition to potential revenue generation.
What can Overcast do for you that others can’t?
Overcast is a Video Content-as-a-Service platform. We’re based on AWS (Amazon Web Services). We are a team of video experts who worked in TV and are now helping non-TV people to manage their content.The platform is built specifically to integrate with DAMs by providing a microservice architecture that allows enterprise businesses to scale their video workflows in their own time.
Find out more
We recognise that all of this technology and jargon can be confusing, so if you’d like to have a chat about your particular challenges and how to solve them, please do get in touch with our CEO Philippe on email@example.com or click here to get in touch — he’d be happy to answer any questions you have.
One of the first things anyone asks when they are moving workflows to the cloud is, “How much is this going to cost me?”
It’s a fair question. And we can all go to the AWS or Azure calculator, plug in 25TBs and understand what it will cost to store that content for a month.
But what about the ingest cost, the egress cost, the transcode cost… and what are all those other parameters that the cloud providers list that can affect the cost?
Well, one of things that you will never get a straight answer to is how much your monthly costs are going to be. Why? Too many factors. Simply put, every application is built differently.
That’s why we build MAX Simulator.
Cloud digital asset management
Whether you call it a Media Asset Manager (MAM), a Production Asset Manager (PAM) or a Digital Asset Manager (DAM), a cloud digital asset management platform is the secret sauce when it comes to managing video content. The reason? Video was traditionally managed on premise by editors and engineers. Now social and marketing departments need access, as does corporate comms, product, sales and everyone else. It’s no longer reasonable to let “the video guy” hold the knowledge to the video kingdom.
The popularity of video means it’s no longer about whether you use it in business but rather how to leverage it.
Since coronavirus has forced many employees around the world to embrace remote working, it’s now trickier to collaborate on video projects. But a cloud digital asset management platform provides the solution — facilitating streamlined workflows, fast review and approvals, and easy transcoding to different formats.
Take it for a test drive
Which brings us back to cost: how much does is cost to use a cloud digital asset management platform?
You wouldn’t buy a new car without taking it for a test drive, would you?
Now you can test drive our video platform to calculate the investment required.
Max Simulator allows you to run a real-time simulation of your video workflows with more than 20 inputs. This will give you an understanding of the CSP (Cloud Service Provider) costs associated with storing and managing your content in the cloud.
The inputs include everything from archive size to number of users, concurrent users and activity levels for real pricing.
It’s very accurate since you only test what you plan to use. You can then add new services to project those costs too.
For example, we had one organization ask us how much it would cost to have 50,000 logins, 1,000 concurrent users working on the system 24 hours per day — and generating 3PB (petabytes) of content per year. To put that in context, it’s equivalent to 700,000 DVD quality videos. With that much content, you want to be fairly sure you know how much it is going to cost you to process it, let alone store it.
Benefits of Max Simulator
CSP costs can be an enigma — but running your workload over a short period of time using Max Simulator helps you better project cost infrastructure.
We know that your business is unique, so let us customise the inputs in Max Simulator to create an accurate understanding of costs specific to you.
Better than a calculator
Amazon Web Services (AWS) has a simple monthly calculator, which is useful for an initial estimate — but you’ll get a better picture by actually simulating a load on a real platform.
In Part 1 of this blog post series arising from the Aragon Research Globe for Enterprise Video 2019, we explored the critical importance of enterprise video to the digital enterprise but discovered that it’s on a collision course with digital asset management.
Here, in Part 2, we’ll examine the need for streamlined UX and collaboration, along with the huge benefits of AI.
Get With The Cool Kids
The Netflix generation is consuming media almost incessantly during their leisure time and they expect the same user experience from media delivery at work. The content must be compelling, it must be ‘of the moment’, and it must be effortless to access. So UX is critical. Companies that are publishing content, whether that’s podcasts or videos, need to ensure the platform they choose to deliver it provides a streamlined experience.
Video management is not just about pre-recorded narrative content that’s shot and edited. Live event capture is one of the big trends now, whether it’s a town hall meeting, a university lecture or a corporate event. Advances in capture technology, auto-tagging, and the ability to upload content to a cloud repository can enable quicker access to captured video. And in this age of instant gratification, that speed of access and search is critical.
The constantly-expanding functionality of video DAM (digital asset management) platforms facilities geographically-dispersed teams to collaborate on videos. Such platforms also make it easier for the average knowledge worker to edit and publish videos with little or no technical knowledge, thus lowering the barrier to entry to enterprises to leverage video.
Storage is a big concern for enterprises in this age of big video, however, a platform that provides a central file repository can facilitate a high-volume production company to meet its ambitions to scale up.
Analytics: The Secret Weapon
We’ve all been there: searching hard drives for a fabulous shot that we remember filming but cannot locate. Enter artificial intelligence. AI enables you to search your video clips for objects, events, settings, colours, words, sounds and facial recognition. Think of the implications for the healthcare, security, and insurance sectors (to name but a few). The transcription of video audio also enables better search.
Aragon Research forecasts that this means enterprises will be able to predict activities and then react in real-time, whether the situation involves transportation, corporate meetings, university classrooms, or large sporting events — and that this is a space to watch closely.
In Part 3 of this blog post series, we’ll delve into the essential components of a video DAM platform.
The digital age has introduced lots of new lingo: tweep, Instagramming, fintech, etc. SaaS is one of the fancy new words, but what does it really mean for you and your business? The acronym SaaS stands for Software as a Service, which means subscribing to a cloud-based solution.
The benefits of SaaS
In the “good old days” we all worked using software installed on computers in our offices. These could only be accessed there. Now, thanks to the digital revolution, SaaS facilitates teams to work and collaborate anywhere in the world where they have an internet connection.
While there is a subscription charge for SaaS, the cost is much lower than spending your hard-earned dollars on hardware and licences. You can also save money on tech support since the SaaS platform will take care of updates and security. Also, you won’t have to add more servers and storage when you want to scale up: your cloud storage will scale in line with your ambition.
But one piece of software has limited value on its own. Great functionality comes from many building blocks. There is an ever-growing number of technology solutions to marketing, HR, sales and customer service problems. Many of these have great potential; however, they are too complex to be agile.
Creating a tech stack
So, in order to maximise their value, they must huddle together in a stack with other technologies. A stack can include dozens of elements: both Microsoft and Cisco have more than 40 technologies in their respective marketing stacks alone!
A tech stack facilitates you to manage your digital assets by integrating technologies to give you the maximum flexibility and allowing you to use the best of breed solutions for various functions. These include applications like Salesforce for CRM, Trello for workflow and Overcast HQ for video management.
To underscore its importance, there’s even an award for tech stacks! It’s called the Stackies and it rewards companies who demonstrate the best marketing stack in terms of insightful concept, business alignment and clarity of purpose.
The 2019 Stackies (Marketing Tech Stack Awards) are now open for entries until March 15, 2019. All entries will be celebrated at a ceremony on the opening night of MarTech in San Jose on April 3 — and the five best entries will be awarded trophies.
So in order to elevate your business capabilities, accelerate time to value, and provide your team with ubiquitous access to projects, it’s time to get SaaSy!
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