All posts by Alan Drummer

Take a 3-minute Interactive Assessment to See Where You Stand in Unlocking Video’s Power

How prepared is your business to unlock the power of video? Take this enterprise video maturity assessment to find out where your organization is today, where the market will be in 5 years, and what actions you can take now to close the gaps.

This self-assessment should take you less than three minutes, and it will provide you with a downloadable customized report with personalized recommendations from Forrester that you can share with others within your organization to help progress your business video initiatives.

The use of video in business is growing quickly because it has the power to transform every experience: for the prospect, for the customer, and for the employee. Whether creating marketing video assets or supporting customers with video chat customer service, firms are realizing the value of video.  Explore the progress that you’ve made, and the opportunities that lie ahead.


Brandlive Surpasses Monumental 8,000 Livestreamed Events and Unveils Partnership with IBM Cloud Video at its Annual Customer Summit

Brandlive Livestreamed Events - see the webinar on retail marketing inspirationBrandlive, the leading live video platform for brands and retail marketing today announced that it has livestreamed over 8,000 events, as part of a partnership with IBM Cloud Video. With this milestone, Brandlive confirms its position as the go-to resource for brands and retailers looking to interact with their audiences for sales enablement, marketing and commerce events.

In today’s saturated digital landscape, brands need an innovative method to cut through the noise and engage with their customers. By leveraging live video, companies can bolster their marketing strategies to more effectively interact with their audiences and foster relationships in real-time.

Brandlive empowers top brands like Adidas, GoPro, eBay, and Cabela’s to better communicate with their audiences by offering customers real-time access to experts, influencers, and executives. With 8,000 livestreamed events, it is clear that brands are harnessing live video and understand its myriad advantages: live video is more engaging, faster to produce, and drives more sales than recorded video.


Streaming Video Success Stories Infographic Featuring 8 Leading Organizations

Video moves people.  The human brain absorbs video with much less work than it takes to process text.  As a result, we’d rather watch than read, and we end up sharing videos more than almost any other type of content on the internet. Leading organizations are recognizing this, and they’re expanding their use of video as a tool for driving better business outcomes.

The streaming video success stories infographic below illustrates eight great results that organizations are achieving using streaming video.  Click on the infographic and it will open in PDF format, with each result linking to a two-minute video that explains how it was achieved.  Which result is most relevant to your goals?

For the fastest path to results, tell us the type of impact you need from streaming video, and we can coach you on the best practices most relevant to delivering it.

Streaming Video Success Stories Infographic[Download Infographic PDF]


Be Inspiring: Top 6 Tips for Streaming Religious Services and Other Events

Top 7 Tips for Streaming Religious Services and Other Events Point your camera at a religious service, touch the “Go Live” button, and your stream could reach dozens or even thousands of people in places you’ve never heard of.  You can’t be sure what effect it might have on your audience.

Maybe you’re a rabbi sitting in front of a webcam in your office, about to play guitar and chat online with visitors to your weekly online-only synagogue. Or maybe you’re behind a camera that will sweep across 4,000 parishioners in a megachurch and send the service out to 50,000 viewers around the world.

Both these examples are among the roughly one thousand religious organizations that share their services on Ustream.tv each week. Whether the audience is vast or small, each producer wants to offer a high-quality, reliable video stream that is a gift for viewers to receive.

We asked experienced producers who stream religious services to share with us the top tips that make their work successful and rewarding. Read on to get their advice.  And get started free with IBM Cloud Video (includes Ustream) to stream your own religious service.

  1. Start with an abundance of bandwidth
  2. Harness social media
  3. Emphasize audio to build your impact
  4. Make viewers feel present
  5. Connect everyone with the chat module
  6. The biggest impact might come with the smallest audience


SolarCity Use Case Video: Building Employee Engagement with Streaming Video


Nothing conveys emotion like live video. You watch it and feel it in the same moment.  This SolarCity use case video explores why live video plays such an important role at SolarCity: it’s the vehicle for executive-led town halls, interactive trainings and webinars that bring together 15,000 employees across many locations and departments.


World Jousting Championship This Weekend: Think Game of Thrones Without Stunt Planning

World Jousting Championship“If you haven’t seen jousting before, picture your worst nightmare come true,” says Luke Campbell, chief operating officer at Epicentre.tv, which is streaming the first World Jousting Championship this weekend on IBM Cloud Video. “It’s two guys running on horseback, down a tilt line, 60 kilometers an hour (about 40 miles an hour) using wooden lances with metal tips to knock each other off. It’s insane, actually. You have to witness it to believe it.”


IBM Cloud Video ECDN with Multicast is expanding enterprise video delivery options

Ramp multicast

Live streamed video is increasingly popular and useful for enterprises, but it is bandwidth-intensive. As a result, IT executives face the challenge of serving live video feeds to an increasing number of concurrent viewers without causing a network slowdown or outage.

For almost 20 years, many large enterprises, as well as cable and telecom providers, have solved this challenge by using IP multicast because it’s optimal for delivering live video or linear TV to large audiences. While IP unicast sends separate streams to each viewer, IP multicast distributes a single stream of IP packets and it serves all viewers who request the video, regardless of the number of viewers. Bandwidth consumption is minimized at the internet connection point and on the local network.

New options have become available in IP multicast that makes it even more compelling for organizations with an IP multicast-enabled network—or those that could benefit from one. Read on to learn about them:


Deliver internal video without bottlenecks: Know what your network requires

Internal video delivery

It’s challenging for enterprises to deliver internal video because streaming video consumes so much bandwidth.  For instance, if a 100-person company site has a 100 megabit-per-second internet connection, and just 34 people watch a live stream of CEO town hall at their desktops at the same time, they can cause a network outage.

Three main approaches solve the problem. One is unicast delivery, where a single video stream is sent from the source to an onsite unicast server, which caches the content and distributes it to hundreds or even thousands of viewers while minimizing the impact on the internet connection and network.

A second approach is multicast delivery, where a single stream from the video source is received by a specially-configured router, which addresses the video packets so that they simultaneously serve multiple viewers at a site.  Cable and telecom companies use multicasting because of its bandwidth efficiency.


Top 9 tips for live-streaming commencements and other big events: Advice from Notre Dame’s Streaming Engineer


Notre Dame’s Eric Nisly guides live-streaming of commencement and other events using resources like this production truck.

Live-streamed video takes you to the heart of an event and lets you share in its emotion from wherever you are.

Maybe a friend or family member is crossing the stage to get a diploma, or an ensemble of musicians is playing passionately to win a prestigious international prize, or a university is interviewing teachers and students during an online fundraiser to share with alumni the kind of moments that make the campus special.

These are just some of the hundreds of annual events now streamed by the University of Notre Dame. The volume of streamed events has roughly doubled in the last three years as the public’s appetite for streaming video grows.

Notre Dame’s production team, including Streaming Engineer Eric Nisly, have learned from experience a few best practices that make a big difference in keeping glitches low, emotional impact high, and results solid. We asked Eric to share 9 of his top tips.

  1. Get the word out
  2. Plan to fail
  3. Keep crew responsibilities narrow
  4. Get the two most wanted camera angles
  5. Ensure live support from your streaming platform
  6. Better than selling DVDs: stream goodwill
  7. Document success: crowdsource your streaming playbook
  8. Build strategic vendor relationships
  9. Keep raising the bar: put a point person on R&D


Preparing for failure is key to success in live video, say customers at IBM Enterprise Video Idea Exchange

Picture of IBM Cloud Video customer event in San Francisco

IBM Cloud Video customers shared best practices at a customer event in San Francisco,with more events to be staged in Singapore, Chicago, New York, and Dallas

Live video is so exciting because no one knows what will happen—and just about everything will happen, over time. Expect things to break.

This was the consensus among the customers and practitioners who attended the first IBM Cloud Video Enterprise Video Idea Exchange, on February 9 in San Francisco.

The idea for the event came from a customer on the video team at a top hospitality company. The team stages frequent internal and external broadcasts, and they wanted to talk with other IBM Cloud Video customers to identify best practices for fail-proofing live-streamed events.  The top tip, not surprisingly, was to have redundancies for every component, from internet service provider to encoder.


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