Why Streaming Platforms Are Crucial to Companies Now and In the Future

Streaming platforms have gone from a luxury to a must-have for enterprise-level companies.

Even before the COVID-19 pandemic pushed employers to support remote work, more and more companies were deploying streaming platforms.

A fourth-quarter 2019 survey by Wainhouse Research found that 65% of respondents agreed that their organization is pushing to adopt video content solutions.

And Wainhouse Research discovered that 61% of people reported watching at least 30 minutes of business video weekly during 2019’s fourth quarter. That’s a 56% increase from 2018.

Pre-pandemic estimates expected phenomenal growth in the use of enterprise streaming platforms and video on demand. A Feb. 2019 report by Grand View Research predicted that enterprise video stream services would grow annually by 17.8% between 2018 and 2025.

But the coronavirus pandemic is accelerating that trend.

In July 2020, ABI Research forecasted enterprise streaming solutions to generate $18.7 billion in 2020. ABI expects that number to reach $19.9 billion by 2024.

COVID-19 forced many large organizations into a teleworking model with employees working from home. The move created a desperate need for reliable, secure, and flexible enterprise streaming platforms.

And remote working might be here to stay, even after the pandemic subsides.

Companies such as Facebook and REI plan to let employees work from home indefinitely. Google’s parent company, Alphabet, is supporting telework through at least the first half of 2021.

We’re now living in the future many predicted of enterprises deploying video stream services. To be efficient and effective, companies can no longer delay adopting live and on-demand video.

In this article, we’ll cover why enterprises need streaming services. And we’ll highlight what you should look for when considering a streaming solution.

First, let’s define enterprise streaming platforms.  

What Are Enterprise Streaming Platforms?

Enterprise streaming solutions are video hosting solutions supporting live and on-demand video.

These platforms support video on demand, live broadcasts, and streaming media. They come with video players and video hosting.

Some examples of enterprise streaming platforms include Vbrick, Brightcove, and IBM Cloud Video.

One way to understand what enterprise streaming solutions are is to know what they are not.

Video communication tools such as Zoom exploded at the start of the COVID-19 pandemic. In June 2020, Zoom announced it had about 265,000 customers with more than ten employees. 

Zoom is similar to Google Hangouts or Skype. All of these tools allow people to meet virtually in real-time using voice and video. 

But Zoom is not an enterprise streaming platform. It lacks all the features that come with an enterprise streaming solution. 

That’s one of the reasons Zoom partners with Vbrick. Doing so allows Zoom to extend to its customers the benefits of an enterprise streaming platform.

Other popular live streaming services that aren’t enterprise streaming platforms include Twitch, YouTube Live, and Facebook Live.

Each platform offers free live streaming. They’re mobile-friendly, available on iOS and Android. And the tools let people air live broadcasts on their favorite social networks.

But these tools are meant for the general public, not the enterprise. Free live streaming services aren’t as secure and lack many functions available in enterprise streaming solutions.

What are these functions and features? Let’s find out.

The Features and Functions of Enterprise Streaming Solutions

Let’s imagine your company hires a new CEO. To introduce them to your organization’s workforce, you plan an all-hands town hall.

Because of COVID-19, all your employees are working from home. So your town hall has to be virtual, streamed in real-time. 

Does your company have the infrastructure to pull it off? Can you make the video on demand for your employees to access later? Will your CEO look their best? How do you ensure only your workforce attends?

These are just some of the questions organizations confront as they adopt enterprise streaming platforms. 

And the answers to these questions speak to why companies realize they can’t rely on live streaming services such as Zoom for all their video needs. Instead, they need an enterprise streaming solution.

Companies have many requirements for the live and on-demand video solution that’s right for them. These needs include:

  • Reliability
  • Quality
  • Scalability
  • Flexibility
  • Security

Below we dive into each requirement.

High-Quality and Reliable Streaming Media

Let’s return to the scenario of introducing your new CEO to your entire company via the virtual townhall.

First impressions matter. You want your CEO to look their best.

One of the challenges of broadcasting a live event is ensuring the streaming media doesn’t lag or freeze. And you want the video content to be pristine and clear for all viewers.

How will your new CEO appear if the live broadcast freezes while their mouth is open? What will the CEO think if their first live event goes off the rails?

You take too many risks when you use a non-enterprise live streaming service. The video might lag, and the real-time broadcast could cut-out completely.

Along with ensuring your live event or video looks fantastic, you need to know your streaming solution can meet all your company’s needs. Facebook Live might be OK for one of your organization’s use cases, but how about others? 

Only enterprise-level streaming platforms can give you the quality, reliability, and scalability of streaming media your company demands.

For example, Vbrick’s Rev platform makes it easy for you to capture, manage, and distribute high-quality, reliable video content across your organization.

Reliability and quality video stream services are essential parts of picking a live and on-demand video tool. 

Still, they’re not the only reasons you need an enterprise streaming solution.

Flexibility That Only Enterprise Streaming Platforms Provide

Non-enterprise live streaming services lack a capability crucial to the enterprise: flexibility.

Enterprise streaming platforms accommodate the many, various requirements of large organizations. 

For example, companies want their brand front and center when employees are consuming the organization’s video content. Enterprise streaming solutions solve this need by allowing for white labeling.

One way providers accommodate white labeling is by letting companies incorporate their logo and brand colors into video players. 

And some enterprise streaming platforms, such as Vbrick, let you use different branding depending on the event. Your sales team can have a look and feel specific to their year-end meeting while your IT department can use different branding for its daily huddles.

Mobile is another area of flexibility that matters. 

Not all your employees will tune into your live events or access your video on demand from a laptop or desktop computer. 

The best enterprise streaming solutions are mobile-friendly. They leverage responsive design and HTML 5 video, giving your workforce the flexibility demanded by their daily lives.

How you deploy video stream services matters, too.

Some companies need cloud-based video hosting, while others require a hybrid deployment. You’ll only find that level of flexibility with enterprise streaming platforms.

And your IT team wants a service that integrates with your company’s existing systems. 

Video stream services designed for the general public won’t have the infrastructure or support to integrate with your organization’s technology. You’ll only find that level of flexibility with an enterprise streaming solution.

You also need to connect your video and live streaming service to other tools, such as Salesforce and Zoom. Leading enterprise streaming platforms provide that level of service.

There are many ways that enterprise streaming solutions give you the flexibility, reliability, and quality you need in video stream services. 

But there’s one more essential piece to the streaming media puzzle that you cannot forget.

Keeping Your Company Safe While Streaming Media

Keeping your company and your workforce safe while streaming media is critical.

Live streaming services such as YouTube Live and Facebook Live can’t provide the security level you must have if your company’s streaming media.

There are a few facets to security you should consider when reviewing streaming solutions.

First, you need to make sure you can control access to your company’s live broadcasts and on-demand content. 

You don’t want, for example, your competitor to watch your development team discuss their product roadmap. Or, you might want to keep all employees from accessing an executives-only meeting.

Next, you have to maintain privacy for your company and your employees. 

An employee discussing a concern with HR needs to know their conversation is confidential. A manager sharing annual salary information with their employee must be able to do so privately.

And you need to control the distribution of your company’s video content outside your organization.

Giving people the ability to share content is a key feature of YouTube Live and other free live streaming and video content tools. These services make it easy for users to connect to a social network and send their videos to the broader world.

Enterprise streaming platforms give you the ability to restrict who sees and shares your live broadcasts and video content. They give you a full range of security and privacy features.

For example, Vbrick is a FedRAMP-authorized enterprise streaming solution. FedRAMP is a federal government program providing a standardized approach to security.

Leading enterprise streaming platforms such as Vbrick leverage encryption to keep your video content safe. And they deploy multiple levels of security.

Vbrick has a three-tier approach that covers your streaming platforms infrastructure, application, and operational use.

Of all the reasons you need an enterprise streaming solution, security is the most critical. 

You can’t take the chance of your company’s live and on-demand video falling into the wrong hands or being viewed by those who shouldn’t see it.   

Why Companies Need Enterprise Streaming Platforms

Companies were already using live streaming platforms and video on demand solutions before the COVID-19 pandemic.

Video streaming solutions are becoming an $18 billion industry.

But now, large organizations worldwide are quickly adapting to a work-from-home reality that might be here to stay. Already, companies from Facebook to Google are supporting remote work for at least the next year.

This shift is causing companies to realize they can’t rely on tools such as Facebook Live and YouTube Live for their streaming media needs. 

The number of people using these free live streaming tools is exploding, but they’re not good enough for the enterprise. 

Instead, companies are turning to enterprise streaming platforms. These video on demand and streaming solutions solve the challenges facing large organizations.

Specifically, enterprise streaming platforms provide:

  • High-quality live broadcasts and video content.
  • Reliable video stream services.
  • Scalable platform offers.
  • Flexible video players, live streaming platforms, and more.
  • Secure video hosting and live event streaming.

It’s now a necessity, not a luxury, for enterprises to adopt video on demand and streaming solutions. Only enterprise-level streaming platforms can meet this growing need.

COVID-19 is wrecking many company’s plans. Fortunately, these resources can help you use video to power your business continuity.

Would you like to learn more about streaming media? Start here to learn more about enterprise video platforms.

And if you’re ready to discover how an enterprise streaming solution can meet your company’s needs, schedule a demo with Vbrick.