The COVID-19 pandemic has forced all media companies, brands, publishers and agencies to reevaluate the way they work.
For the most part, cloud-based computing has made its way into almost every business in some shape or form. Most marketers probably use a cloud-based service at work every day - be it for storage, communication, video conferencing or logging on to their company’s server.
Businesses are continually investing in cloud technology that provides a competitive advantage. Think about what Zoom has done for remote communication, what DropBox has done for quick file sharing, or what Google Docs has done for collaborative working.
But when it comes to marketing, but more specifically, content creation, adoption of the cloud has been slower. Without cloud-based tools, you might have gone to great lengths to reconfigure your workflow for remote content production. Some have taken equipment home, others have had to set up systems to access their office desktop. Many companies have needed to upgrade the home connectivity of many employees to deal with the increased demand.
But none of this is needed with cloud-based working. This pandemic has taught every business a lesson in continuity and contingency, highlighting the strength of the cloud beyond what it’s used for today.
Remote production: For now and for later
Working in content production is fast-paced. Even when everyone can be in the same room together, creating enough quality content that stands out can be a challenge. The same way the cloud has made other areas of the business flexible and reliable, it is also transforming content creation, making it simpler and more effective to reach consumers and across multiple touchpoints, regardless of your physical location.
The foundation of cloud infrastructure is built for real-time collaboration and communication. Whether that be writing copy, designing artwork or producing video - a team spread across locations can work as if they are in the same room.
Today, a video editor could sit in their living room and create a short edit using tools entirely in the cloud, while a graphic designer, sitting in a bedroom across the country, can access the same video and apply creatives in seconds. The asset can then be delivered to multiple platforms at once in the same workflow.
In most cases, this way of working is faster than using traditional hardware or software-based tools in an office environment. Digital channels require agility and speed - being first to market has never been more crucial in a time when more eyeballs are on screens than ever before.
Cloud-based production tools remove the need to purchase new equipment, more software licences or even office space.
Working with remote freelancers, tapping into local knowledge or setting up talented teams spread across the globe can be easy to implement and manage.
Remote content opportunities
Connecting with influencers and brand ambassadors has long been a challenge for brands. Lining up schedules with the resources of your marketing team can be tricky. With travel restrictions in place, coming together is now impossible.
Remote contribution is the solution now and likely the way forward. Whether it’s producing a live broadcast or short video, it can take no more than clicking on a link and using a webcam and microphone for an influential guest to contribute.
A guest can easily appear live, or record themselves from anywhere in the world with an internet connection. This content can be easily packaged and shared in moments.
This presents many opportunities for enhanced consumer engagement, especially when delivered to social media.
Live Q&As on platforms such as Facebook and YouTube drive long watch times and create memorable experiences, encouraging viewers to ask questions and comment during the broadcast. You can also encourage UGC (user-generated content) to include in live shows and edits. It is tried and tested that successful UGC challenges drive brand recognition and sales.
You can also go a step further, and invite consumers to join your broadcasts. Using cloud-based tools, you only need a single browser link to bring anyone into a live broadcast or video edit remotely. Active participation is what creates a connection with consumers and drives engagement with a brand who displays two-way communication with its customers.
There are limitless ways to create connected experiences using the cloud, which will only happen through experimentation and innovation. For many business functions, there is no way back from the cloud, and during social isolation, marketers have the chance to realise its potential. Once you do, content creation will likely never be the same.
By Aaron Duckmanton, Global Head of Marketing, Grabyo
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