Video is easy – for the end user. The people creating the content and managing the technology around it face an entirely different situation. For them, video can be fun, intuitive, exciting and serve as a catalyst for creativity. It can also be incredibly complicated to deal with on a consistent basis. There’s a ton to consider before rolling out a video program and when trying to maintain it, and it can be easy for somebody trying to lead that initiative to get overwhelmed. But video can be simple. The key is to be prepared for the ways it is going to challenge you and have a plan. With a solid foundation in place, you can be ready to improvise when faced with an unexpected problem, and come out on top.
Organizations using video to engage and empower workers can get powerful results, but they need to be strategic about how they use the content if they want to maximize those benefits. Following these five tips will help you simplify your video efforts and get the most out of your plans:
1. Get your network ready
Most of these tips will focus on the conceptual and management sides of preparing for video, but a nod to the technical challenges is needed. If video does not work precisely as it should, users will tune out. To avoid this eventuality, you should perform network readiness testing to assess how much work needs to be done to prepare for video, consider making a few strategic hardware investments and seriously evaluate the possibility of solutions like enterprise content delivery networks that are designed to overcome the specific challenges brought on by video content.
2. Evaluate existing engagement roadblocks
If video is going to be successful as an employee engagement tool, it must be targeted at dealing with the issues that are causing your workers to disengage. Do they feel like executives don’t really care about them and only value the money they bring the company? Is there a disconnect between how they work and the company culture? Is a disconnect between your everyday operations and your actual values causing workers to become disillusioned with the organization? Most businesses face issues like this to at least some degree, and developing video strategies to tackle the specific areas where your employees are struggling is key.
Understanding these engagement pain points is vital if you want to get employees back on board.
3. Identify key stakeholders for the project
Who do you want to get on camera on a frequent basis? Which teams or departments are most likely to hold frequent video meetings? Which employees are excited about the possibilities of video and ready to serve as champions for the program? Who in your organization has experience or interest in video production and may be able to consult on best practices? A wide range of people can serve as stakeholders in your video strategy and provide vital assistance in getting it off the ground. Furthermore, some of these stakeholders may have some concerns about video or be worried about how it will impact them. You need to get them to embrace the solution.
For example, you may be hoping to create a great deal of content around executive messages that create better connections between your upper-level workers and the rest of your employees. This strategy will suffer if those individuals are not aware of the time commitment that is required to participate in video shoots or if they do not have an understanding of how to be engaging on camera. Some basic training and sessions that set clear expectations can play a vital role in avoiding these problems. Knowing who your stakeholders are in advance makes it easier to ensure you have time to get them ready for what video will require as the project gets going.
4. Establish a content pipeline
Having a core group of exciting, well-produced videos ready for your users at the outset of the project – not to mention dedicated video conference spaces – can create initial excitement around your project. However, that momentum can decline precipitously over time if you do not establish a steady influx of content that is being added to the archive. At the same time, you also need to make a point of encouraging users to take advantage of video conference capabilities for virtual meetings.
The goal here is consistency and sustainability. It is easy to make the mistake of having a video program fizzle because you put so much effort into getting it going that you can’t sustain the level of quality or frequency of content delivery that came at the project’s outset. To combat this, you need to establish a steady pipeline for content delivery and clear expectations for using live streaming functions to consistently breathe life into your strategies.
5. Establish a video culture
The lines between what is mandatory and what is optional often blur when companies develop video strategies. On one hand, you don’t want to require users to watch everything because that eliminates the potential fun, casual tone that video strategies can create. On the other, you can’t afford to have important, valuable content languishing unwatched in an archive somewhere.
Establishing clear expectations for different types of content is key, and this can be just as much about culture as it is about rules. You may not need to say that every video is mandatory to view, or even make any one piece of content necessary. What you can do, however, is encourage people to talk casually about video with one another, make a big deal about content that is released and elaborate on video on corporate communication channels. All of these efforts create a culture in which the videos are viewed as valuable and even essential.
It is key to extend this culture around the importance of video to encapsulate live stream events. Encourage workers to take advantage of video conference functions and to participate actively in live streams to ensure the efforts put into making those functions available don’t go to waste.
Video doesn’t have to be a huge, overwhelming production to be successful. It does, however, need to be strategic and, eventually, become part of your organization’s culture. These tips will help you establish the foundation you need for a video strategy that engages your workers.