The Digital Transformation of Video

As online video quickly becomes a key means for people to satisfy their information, entertainment and social needs in the digital age, businesses that fail to develop a coherent video strategy and incorporate video in their marketing and operations will do so at their own peril.  The digital transformation of video production, distribution, consumption and archiving is enabling the effective exploitation of video on multiple devices and via different channels (particularly mobile), which may mark the beginning of the long awaited arrival of ‘social business’, where video-dominated social media will fundamentally transform workplace communication across business functions, organisational boundaries, geographies and cultures.

Production

The digital transformation of video production is facilitated by a series of incremental technological and business innovations, which are collectively leading to radical changes.  While high quality professional video production remains expensive and time consuming, the lowering of technological, financial and skill barriers for video production to virtually nothing for billions of people has resulted in the explosive growth of video production in recent years.  These are often in new formats (e.g. very short video clips or 24/7 continuous live streaming) and in new areas (e.g. showing someone playing a video game) that are distinct from traditional professional video production.

Distribution

The transformation of video distribution is equally significant.  We have witnessed rapid growth of on-demand video via digital networks to multiple screens (TVs as well as tablets and mobile phones), although the predicted demise of traditional linear programmed TV is likely to take a long time to materialise.  The transformation of video distribution is facilitated by three developments: the near ubiquitous broadband and 3G/4G mobile networks, the mass ownership of smartphones and tablets as well as personal computers, and the rapid growth of platform firms (from YouTube and Facebook, Netflix and Amazon, to Snapchat, Instagram, Vine, Meerkat, Twitch and Periscope, to name a few).

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