The Brave New World of Streaming Video

by Joan Fiddle-Ferder

Ingesting, encoding, format conversion, content protection, on-demand streaming, live streaming, analytics, codecs and more.

How many of you “old world” broadcast producers out there are familiar with these terms?  How many of you want to run, hide and snuggle up to the comforting words, “tape, time-code, and duplication?

I know many of us that are crawling under our desks, scared of the video streaming world. But, as online media demand continues to explode and consumers/clients expect access to their media anytime on any device, the processes involved in creating and distributing content have become more complex and expensive. There are so many platforms to please, devices, and media delivery scenarios that understanding how to stream can present a daunting challenge for most content providers.  The reality?  The world of streaming video is here to stay, so you need to get with it and learn as much as you can in order to stay current, or even more so, ahead of the stream.

Get educated!  Webcasting is the fastest-growing niche market in video production. All video producers need to learn how to create a webcast in all events. Learn, for example,  what equipment you need in order to produce a professional webcast (and what equipment to avoid), how to solve common webcast problems, how to choose a webcast service provider, and how to set up and produce your webcast. Learn how to create a set of video files that will play on all devices, including SmartPhones to computers.  Learn key concepts like protocol and technologies like HTTP Live Streaming, DASH, dynamic streaming and delivering to all key platforms.

And, remember that as a video producer, CONTENT IS KEY.  Unless you are streaming a video conference or a documentary,  streamed messages needs to be delivered FAST. The shelf life is seconds. Yes. Seconds. Your message has 30 seconds or less to make it across the screen, especially if you are delivering content that is “persuasive” or a sales tool. Remember to THINK BACKWARDS.  Deliver the message at the beginning rather than the end.  Nothing new, but you MUST know your audience.  Learn the analytics of the audience, the best platform to stream your content.  Most importantly, remember that in streaming video, the purpose of the message is received in 7 seconds or less. YES. That is all you have to get that message across.

So learn as much as you can about streaming. Produce it. Have fun with it.  And get out from under the desk!

Be aware that your clients believe that they can shoot, edit and stream video themselves.  Next month, we’ll talk more specifically about why they are wrong!