TL; DR: A pioneer in the world of online video, Brightcove continues to reinvent how organizations use multimedia to inform, inspire, and entertain. Whether customers use video for marketing or internal communications — or both — Brightcove’s online platforms ensure the right audiences have access to the proper content, analytics, and interactive experiences expected from a company serving high-quality videos to thousands of customers in more than 70 countries.
In 2004, social media was still in its infancy. MySpace dominated the young-adult scene, featuring customizable music players. Between the ubiquitous distribution of Flash Player, coupled with rapidly growing broadband and wifi networks, music and videos started appearing on more and more websites.
Although MySpace’s popularity faded, the popularity of online entertainment endures; anyone can upload and share videos with the rest of the world in a matter of minutes. Capitalizing on the early technology, Brightcove launched and pioneered the concept of online video distribution — several months before YouTube.
After enjoying more than a decade of steady growth and innovations, Brightcove finds itself in the throes of another shift in the video landscape. According to Vice President of Product Marketing and Strategy Paul Casinelli, the market is expanding beyond media publishers and subscriptions to fueling marketing campaigns and enterprise communications in a wide variety of industries.
Now, Brightcove’s platforms help businesses communicate more effectively and leverage analytics to drive both internal and external video efforts. Whether adapting to new devices, audio formats, or compression technologies, Brightcove does the legwork to ensure customers can deliver videos wherever their audience is.
“The explosion of video-based technology is just outstanding,” Paul said. “We simplify all of that for our customers. That is one of the key pillars of our mission, making sure people can see the videos they want, when, where, and how they want.”
Inventing an Industry: Brightcove’s Early Days of Online Videos
After inventing ColdFusion and driving product strategy for Macromedia’s Flash Player, Jeremy Allaire formed Brightcove in 2004 and became one of the earliest players in online video publishing.
“There was practically no video online when Brightcove started,” Paul said. “Our Founder started the company at the beginning of the movement, when video was just getting started. He saw it was going to be a huge game changer, and started Brightcove to bring video streaming to the world.”
In the following years, Brightcove partnered with Reuters, Discovery, and Sony to launch a new internet video platform. Brightcove Studio enabled users to create custom video players and widgets. Later, the company’s Video Cloud hosting and publishing platform catered to the early adopters of video marketing.
“Before 2014, most videos were focused on the media side with newspapers, publishers, and magazines,” Paul said. “More recently, we’re seeing companies wanting to use video to better communicate with their audience and leverage analytics.”
All-in-One Video Marketing Platform Drives Conversion Rates
Although online video has been more widely adopted through the years, its implementation comes with a number of challenges, Paul said. To help companies adapt to this rapidly changing landscape, Brightcove simplifies video streaming by taking care of the technical processes behind the scenes.
“Each solution has a core video platform that allows you to handle uploading, management, player creation and customization, analytics, user management, and administration,” he said. “For each platform, we also have a unique value-based feature set that helps these companies do more with both external and internal video.”
For companies wanting to use videos to build brand recognition and attract more customers, the Brightcove Video Marketing Suite supplies seamless integrations with various social media platforms, content management systems, advertising, and other marketing and customer relationship programs. Brightcove Gallery then delivers the videos to viewers through customizable layouts.
“It’ll be a fully hosted Brightcove gallery or video portal that has all your videos in there with calls to action, social sharing buttons, and lead forms,” Paul said. “You can update it automatically, so you have a place to manage all your videos in a way that keeps your website organized and up to date.”
Secure Video Management Services Suitable For Enterprises
In addition to public-facing video marketing campaigns, Paul said enterprise customers are increasingly looking to use videos internally. Whether for sharing training videos or streaming a town hall with the CEO, Brightcove Enterprise Video Suite allows businesses to easily create and publish videos across the company — while maintaining strict security with single sign-on, URL tokens, and IP restriction.
“The most important thing that our enterprise video customers are looking for is, ‘When I put these videos onto this page for my employees, how do I make sure that no one else gets access to this confidential video?’” Paul said. “We have some robust security tools to make sure that, if you only want your employees to see a video, only your employees can see it.”
Amusingly, according to Paul, the introduction of security features and restricted access is contrary to the original company and product philosophy.
“When we got started, it was about getting our videos out to as many people as possible,” he said. “That’s been a really exciting change for us to be a part of.”
The suite allows for on-demand videos and live streaming without bogging down the company network. Meanwhile, analytics and user engagement data enable customers to measure business impact and returns on investment.
The Mantra: Making the Best Experiences Possible With Visual Media
Designed to help businesses and their customers get the most out of video, Brightcove continually adapts to the changing technologies, users, and strategies associated with online video publishing and distribution. The evolution, according to Paul, distinguishes the company from competitors that solely offer stripped-down video hosting.
“Our systems are so much more than that,” he said. “You can add interactivity, you can get deep analytics, you can tie everything to ROI, publish out to social networks, and do live streaming. Video hosting itself is not what drives excitement among our customers.”
Brightcove combines its industry expertise with customer feedback to identify new features and ways to improve user experience.
“The mantra of our feature development strategy is all about making the best possible experience,” Paul said. “We don’t try to just iterate on our platform. We try to look at the next wave that’s going to come.”