When the DVD came on the scene in 1995, developed by the brainiacs at Philips, Sony, Toshiba, and Panasonic, it was viewed as a miracle of technology. A wafer thin disc that could allow the general public to watch movies and other video presentations via a high-quality picture was truly a marvel of engineering, one that would impact the video business for the next few decades.
Jump ahead 20 years, however, and you’ll clearly see that 1995’s wondrous new invention has nearly become a thing of the past. Just look at Netflix and the popularity of its streaming services versus physical DVD in-home delivery. Whereas the latter was the name-of-the-game for the last decade-and-a-half, that’s not the case anymore. And Netflix understands this. Company records show that they spent no money at all in 2014 marketing their DVD delivery business but in excess of $200 million promoting their streaming service.
Small- and medium-sized businesses who sell video should start thinking about how they are going to adapt their products to keep up with consumers needs and wants.
While it’s true that most American households probably still own a traditional DVD or Blu-ray player, it’s become overwhelmingly obvious that leaders in technology are viewing DVDs as passé. Apple was the first to kill off the disc drive, initially with the introduction of the paper-thin Air model (sans drive) and then in its other computers as well. Optical drives started disappearing on MACs as early as 2010, and when a leader like Apple makes such a move, chances are others will follow…and they did.
Instead, today’s in-the-know businesses – from small one-person enterprises to much larger corporations – are offering better and more efficient video options that customers love. Whether you sell videos offline via catalogs or offer your video products online through your website, you should know that options that include never again producing an actual, physical video are preferred these days. And these options are easier for you – the business owner – as well.
Many businesses have now gone the downloadable video route while others offer streaming. Some offer both and each has its advantages but both offer high-quality viewing experiences that are ultra-convenient.
Downloadable video helps avoid the risks of slow video loading that are often associated with streaming. Furthermore, customers love downloading videos to their many electronic devices. The ability to do this provides them with something today’s busy customers love – convenience! Downloading to a phone, tablet, or laptop computer means they can watch YOUR videos when it’s best for them. As such, time wasted waiting in lines or elsewhere can turn into productive time when video downloading is used.
But why limit yourself to just one method of video distribution? Customers stick with companies that provide options and flexibility, so if you’re considering going from DVD to digital-on-demand, think about offering streaming options as well.
Streaming is the viewing method of choice for millions…just look at Netflix. It’s a trend that caught on quickly and continues to grow. Like downloading, it offers convenience to customers and is especially popular with today’s tech savvy young adult generation, who are the newest movers and shakers in the business world as well as the largest consumers of video of any kind.
Those who are always “connected” – no matter where they are – are huge fans of streaming. As long as an internet connection is available, you can stream from your phone, tablet, or other device, whether sitting on your favorite chair at home, lounging by the pool during vacation, or waiting for Junior to complete his orthodontic appointment. It’s a win-win situation for the company marketing the videos as well as the consumer.
Remember, whichever way you choose to market your videos – streaming, downloading, or both – the key is providing a high-quality viewing experience for today’s customer, who tends to be intolerant of subpar quality. If it’s inaccessible, they’ll move on and you’ve lost. So take time to carefully explore all of your digital-on-demand options as you take the video portion of your business to the next level and choose the one that will keep your customers coming back for more.