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  • Writer's pictureKyle Shannon

Can video smooth the landing of a cancelled event?

Updated: Sep 11, 2020

Here are some ways video can help fill the void.

We're all facing major challenges as events large & small are being postponed or canceled due to the Coronavirus. Events provide education, inspiration, continuity, productivity, and perhaps most importantly, the human connection. Relationships are started, deepened and expanded at events, and those relationships are the foundation of our organizations. What can we do to stay connected in the face of these challenges? Video is an incredibly powerful tool for maintaining the human element, even if it takes a back seat to the real deal. Fortunately we live in a time when there are many ways to create video that don't require expensive, time-consuming video production. Are We in Sync?

There are two major approaches to deploying video that each have their own pros & cons: Synchronous and Asynchronous. Simply put, Synchronous means it happens in real time. It's live. The advantage is that you can connect and share feedback immediately. The disadvantage is that this approach requires coordination of the people involved, and can be logistically complicated. Especially in regulated environments like healthcare & pharma, this might not be an option, so check with your legal or comms teams. Asynchronous, or Near Real Time video is produced quickly and then shared so that made available on demand. What you lose in immediacy, you gain in flexibility, scalability, control,  compliance, and productivity. People are used to on-demand video because of streaming services, so they may appreciate the ability to view video when it's convenient for them. Synchronous (Real Time) Options Live Video Facebook Live & Linkedin Live are increasingly popular tools that allows a person or team to stream video content to a targeted or invited audience. Both tools have text feedback mechanisms as well as visual feedback with likes, congratulations, etc. If you want to share content with a larger audience, (especially beyond the bounds of your organization,) this is a great way to go. Additionally, the livestream can be archived so that it becomes available on-demand after the live event is over. Video Conferencing Zoom & Google Hangouts are tools that allow for multi-person video conferences allowing teams to connect, see one another and interact together, no matter where people are located geographically.

This approach does require a decent amount of coordination, and as powerful as the tools are, allow for at least 10 minutes of "Can you hear me now?" technical issues to be ironed out at the beginning of each meeting. (In fact, we lost 15 minutes TODAY because of this!) Asynchronous (Near-Real Time) Options Mobile (Social) Video Smart phones these days have very capable cameras on them, so team members can record one another or selfie-style for short, simple messages or introductions. Videos can be emailed if they are small enough, or uploaded to a site like YouTube for easy shareability.

The real challenge with this approach is that the quality of the content is unpredictable at best, and unbranded. Could certainly be used for smaller teams.

Branded Social Video Animoto and Vimeo Create (formerly Magisto) are tools that allow you to stitch together images and video clips and add branding, graphic overlays, & background music, adding some polish to otherwise raw clips.

While video is produced very quickly and looks great, it helps to have some basic storytelling expertise with these tools to produce content that communicates your message clearly. Guided Video Storyvine is a Guided Video platform that produces branded video in a matter of minutes, but also provides step-by-step guidance to dramatically improve the content quality & consistency. VideoGuide templates make it easy for anyone, anywhere to create videos on specific topics such as thought leadership, project updates, testimonials, team profiles, etc. Videos are created and managed in a secure video management system that means videos can be reviewed before they are shared internally or externally. Where to Host Video Content

Video Distribution Platforms

Youtube is by far the best known and most popular platform for sharing video content, especially if you are sharing with audiences beyond your organization.

Vimeo and Brightcove are similar to YouTube, but have more features for business customers and audiences. A lot of larger corporations use Brightcove as their central video hosting platform.

CMS's & LMS's If you are in a large organization, chances are good that there is a Content Management System (CMS) or a Learning Management System (LMS) that can house and share the video content you produce. Check with your IT department if these systems can accommodate video content.

Once video is hosted, you simply share the link to that video to your team via email, productivity tools, like Slack, or even via mobile messaging.

That should give you a good starting point as you think about how to keep your teams, customers and organization connected via video, as we navigate limited travel, canceled events, and potentially working remotely.

Just because you aren't meeting in person, doesn't mean we can't keep connected, productive and inspired!

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