If this is not an email, I may send you a video instead.
We have all been accustomed to video conferencing for the past two years. But when it comes to asynchronous or non – simultaneous communication, we mostly fall back to the medium of tried and true emails.
Email is good for many things, but it’s lousy at expressing emotions or personality, delivering a demo, or displaying a scene. There’s a better video for that.
“Video messaging conveys the personality of the messenger in a way that the best written email struggles to do,” said Eric Burns, CEO. Panopto, a video content management company. “It’s much better to have someone talk to you through a spreadsheet than to share a leaflet and a document.”
Panopto is one of a growing number of companies developing ways to make asynchronous videos practical and easy for all types of tasks now handled by email or live meetings. For product demonstrations and walks, the value of videos is clear, but advocates say there are other ways the medium can be used to make organizations more productive.
Reflecting on the meeting
Think about the way meetings usually go. The session starts a few minutes late to allow time for laggards and small talk. There is often a presentation, which is not usually shared with the audience in advance. People ignore what the speaker is saying as they turn to figure out what’s on the slides.
Meetings can be shorter, more productive, and more comprehensive if part of the session is pre-recorded, said Michael Litt, CEO of the video messaging service Vidyard. “The perception is that meetings need to be alive,” he said, “but not everyone is confident in their ability to respond in real time.” The format is not well suited for those who need time to parse what is being communicated. Physical meetings are usually presided over by the most exporting attendees, which in turn determines the outcome.
Litt recommends, instead, that the meeting organizer record the presentation and send it to the attendees a few days in advance along with a shared document for comment. “That way, when you come in at the meeting, you already have everyone’s questions and ideas instead of spending the first half on the presentation,” he said. Everyone becomes fully aware and ready to spend their time discussing rather than listening to a lecture.
The same goes for sales presentation and customer communication. “When you send a five-minute overview of a topic to the customer in advance you can have a more focused live chat,” Litt said.
Burns argues that “the information bandwidth of the video, especially when paired with an exhibition or presentation, is extremely high. Great for training and reference documentation. You can speed it up, slow it down, and watch it in chunks. ”
An archive of best practices and solutions is created by video capture of meetings, customer interactions and company events. “If the support team sees a workflow problem with a customer, they can record it and send it to the engineering team,” he said. “It builds a video library of the organization’s digital leak while solving problems.”
Panopto uses speech and optical character recognition to make audio and video content searchable. Despite the shortcomings of current technology, the perfect transcription does not have to be useful. “People need 90% accuracy to recall something, but 35% accuracy is enough for a search engine to deliver truly accurate results,” Burns said.
Not everyone is comfortable in front of a camera, but the pandemic was a blessing in disguise. It forces us all to learn at least some basics of video communication and make us a little more tolerant of the imperfections of others.
Burns suggests a few basic things: Avoid unhealthy backgrounds, poor hygiene and sloppy dress. Faces should be central and not cut off at the top. Invest in good audio and video equipment, as “research has shown that people with low audio quality are less intelligent.” Respect audience time and keep messages concise. Use video when it makes sense but keep a good old email in your back pocket.
In recent years there has been a huge boom in tools for easily capturing and sharing videos, including Vidyard, Loom, Hippo Videoand CloudApp. They may be for something. A survey commissioned by Vidyard found that 89% of financial services think video messaging has more impact than text, and two-thirds say they know clients or customers better through video interaction. Who said that has to be in real time?
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Video conferencing does not have to be live
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