No going back: How video is changing internal communications for good

Internal communications are the foundation of any successful business. It ensures the smooth running of work across sectors, teams and individuals, from company updates to job delegation and news sharing. 

Without internal communications, businesses would be in chaos; employees would be out of touch with their leadership teams and vice versa. No one would have any idea what was going on! Just as important as our external communications are to stakeholders, customers and the general public, our internal communications are vital to happy employees and a healthy employee life cycle.   

With technology advancements happening all the time, internal communication platforms are transforming the way businesses share messages, collaborate, learn and organise. For the last few years, the challenge has been deploying a streamlined system that doesn’t feel outdated or complicated when users start sharing content across it. 

Now businesses are waking up to the importance of using better platforms, the focus has turned to the kind of content they’re sharing on them. There’s no point spending money and time on a platform if the content isn’t engaging.

Gallup recently revealed that engaged employees are 21% more profitable. This means that in increasingly competitive and challenging markets, businesses have to engage their employees through the right mediums to ensure continued success. 

So the question is, how can you maximise employee engagement through internal communications? Do you encourage retention and compete for time against endless emails, instant messaging sites and social media platforms like LinkedIn and Instagram?

Video could be the answer.

The video revolution

Video has the potential to completely transform the way we communicate across a business, both in the office and across a global enterprise. It can be your most valuable ally for anyone interested in learning and sharing content about culture, people or projects. According to Forrester Research, employees are 75% more likely to watch a video than to read documents, emails, or web articles. 

Crucially, for employees to engage, understand and retain business information shared internally, it has to be interesting, and video is a much better medium to achieve this. Its versatility makes it ideal for delivering corporate messaging, whether for company news and updates, on-boarding, team building or learning and development.

The benefits of video

Speed 

Communicate messages in seconds, rather than requiring paragraphs of reading.

Simplicity

You don’t have to be a literary genius to share good content. Just pick up a camera and get filming.

Security

Using secure employee experience platforms for internal comms, you can limit access or sharing abilities as needed. 

Engagement

Only 5% of users will stop watching a video after one minute. 

Confidence

It’s too easy to hide behind our keyboards. Video is a great way to help us become more confident by practising speaking. It can help raise confidence for future meetings, presentations and interviews. 

Personal

Watching real people is a far more personal and human experience than reading a document. The freedom of video lets you create far more emotive content.

Analytics

Detailed tracking of engagement to learn about viewer interests and preferences.  

Why video and internal communications are the ultimate power couple 

The freedom and unrestricted potential of video means it conveys a lot of information in fewer words in an engaging way. Video might not be the traditional communications method, but times are changing. With many of us sticking to emails or blog posts when we have a message to pass on. The corporate world has fallen behind personal consumer channels, with YouTube, Snapchat, FaceTime and social platforms like Facebook and Instagram using video to lead the way for social sharing. 

Email is still hugely popular, but a video is much more accessible. The combination of show and tell is simply more effective. Often emails can be ‘spammy’, with important messages diluted or completely missed. Communicating via email is still very much a part of business culture, and while you can’t easily make employees form new habits without work and commitment, video can bridge the gap to successful internal communications that users actually want to engage with. 

internal communications

 

This blog is a guest blog supplied by Phoebe Barker of StoryShare.

StoryShare exists so employees can love their work.

StoryShare is a SaaS Communication and Learning Experience Platform optimised for mobile. The platform delivers ‘Netflix style’ communication and learning experiences to improve Employee Engagement and better equip people to do their jobs. The service can reach any employee, anytime, anywhere, on any device.

StoryShare is deployed at leading brands including Unilever, Accenture, Covestro, Renault and Upfield.

About the Author

Guest Post

At element26.tv, we love sharing the voices of the businesses we know, love, respect and admire. Some of the contributors we are partnered with, others are not. This guest blog was carefully chosen as we feel the author brings incredible value and we hope you agree with this assessment too.

If you have any questions or concerns about this post feel to get in touch with us via our contact form on elementwentysix.com/contact

Join Us For An Exclusive Breakfast: Mastering Video in The Enterprise

On Thursday 19th April, I’ll be speaking at a breakfast event at the Soho Hotel titled  “Enterprise Video: Best Practice”. Element 26 is one of four companies taking part, the others being PGi, Hive Streaming, and 27partners and you can find out more about each of these companies below. The event is free and we would love you to join us. You can register for the event here.

What does it take to run a successful video project in the enterprise?

It starts with the production of a great video and that’s where Element 26 comes in. As a video production company, we tend to be the first port of call when a business decides it wants a video.

That’s good news for us but it is by no means the whole story. There is no point us working hard with the client to create a fantastic video unless people are able to watch it. Our creativity is vital in helping enterprise clients tell their story – and this is what I will be talking about at the seminar – but so too is the practicality offered by our co-hosts.

As much as I firmly believe that content is king, the successful delivery of your video is queen and cannot be ignored.

Corporate clients often don’t want to hear or don’t believe that their networks can’t support the new video they have just completed. They assume that because they are a large or multi-national corporation their networks can handle it. Often this isn’t the case.

The event’s host, 27partners ensures that an organisation has the right infrastructure in place to make video effective for their business. You might be thinking: “Why do they need to worry about infrastructure, it’s all in the cloud, right?”

Often, this isn’t adequate because enterprise clients are required to keep their media in locations under their own control. They can’t use video platforms such as Brightcove, Wistia, etc. A practical example of how 27partners might help is by enabling a field salesperson with poor access to cellular reception to access the content they need to do their job.

In more every day uses, 27partners will go into an organisation and evaluate the technology they have invested in over the years to see if it is up to snuff for their future growth plans.

Hive Streaming has a different proposition. It is a software-only video streaming solution for organisations. Companies are increasingly embracing video communications with the result that often their networks are unable to cope with the demands placed on them. Hive’s clever software uses excess network capacity that enterprises already own to deliver high quality live and on demand video to users in an organisation.

PGi is the world’s largest dedicated provider of collaboration software and services. Its products include web, video and audio conferencing. In the past five years it has hosted 1.2 billion people from 155 countries in nearly 300 million virtual meetings.

I am really looking forward to the seminar and learning more about what these experts have to offer. We all work together to help enterprise clients get the most out of their video and I expect the event to be invaluable for any companies that use video.

As well as content creation, topics covered will include storage and management, distribution and delivery, presentation and access, reporting and analytics, plus how to evolve your video projects.

The speakers will be:

Nathan Haines (www.elementtwentysix.com)

Greg Holt and Owen Shackman: 27 partners (www.27partners.com)

Mark Coomber: Hive (www.hivestreaming.com)

Stephane Barnatt: Pgi (www.pgi.com)

Enterprise Video: Best Practice is taking place at The Soho Hotel, 4 Richmond Mews, London, W1D 3DH on Thursday 19th March from 8.30 am to 10.30 am. The event is free – please join us by registering here.

About the Author

Nathan Haines

Nathan is the managing director of Element 26 and an expert in video production and video marketing. Nathan enjoys supporting companies to grow their businesses using video. Get in touch on Twitter @element26uk

5 Ways To Use Video To Improve Employee Engagement

How many internal emails do you bother to open? If you are honest, the answer is probably most but not all.

A report by internal comms experts Poppulo says that only around 66% of internal emails are opened. That means about a third of emails from co-workers are ignored. Worse still, only about 10% of links in those emails are actually clicked.

Why is this? The simple answer is that we are swamped with emails and for the most part, they do the opposite of it what they are meant to do, namely, engage.

No surprise then that every internal comms team we speak too says that their number one challenge is to improve communication with their staff. And they are right to make this their focus. A report by global professional services company Towers Watson says that companies with highly effective employee engagement give a 47% higher return to shareholders.

What’s interesting is that although most companies now embrace video as a way to connect with clients or customers (as you can read about in our White Paper) many are not yet doing so to communicate with their staff.

Luckily for us, more and more businesses are now doing so, and in a variety of ways. Here are five ways you can use video to improve your employee engagement.

1. A Message From The Boss

1. Depending on the size of your organisation, you may never have seen the big boss, 0r even know what they look like. True, you may be more likely to open an email from the CEO than anyone else but how inspiring is a written message likely to be? Certainly not as rousing as a video presentation, where you can see and hear someone talk with passion about the company you work for.

It doesn’t even need to be a polished performance or have high production values, as this legendary video of Steve Jobs speaking to his Apple employees in 1997 shows.

2. Onboarding

The first day in a new job is daunting. Everything is unfamiliar and you have no idea how anything works. Fortunately for you, those friendly people in HR have sat you down at a desk and told you to read the company’s induction handbook. After 10 minutes of this you’ve probably come to the realisation that your previous job wasn’t so bad after all.  

Most people give up and end up being shown the ropes by someone in their team, taking time out of their busy day. Multiply that scenario for every employee that joins the company and you can see how many people hours are likely to be wasted. And, it’s unlikely the company’s message is consistent or even correct.

How much better would it be if the company pins down everything a new employee needs to know in a video or series of videos? Not only will this save precious staff time but people are more likely to remember what they’ve seen compared to what they read – the so-called ‘Picture Superiority Effect’. Further still, as an on demand resource, your employees can refer back to this content at any point in the future.

3. Share Best Practice and Internal Workshops

In 2016, 43% of American workers worked remotely – the figure in the UK is likely to be similar. With so many people working away from their office, getting people together for meetings can be at best a nightmare and at worst impossible.

Yet being able to share information with colleagues is important. This could be product demos, sales enablement or establishing best practices. Video works superbly for this. It allows people to explain things in a personal and human way that can be difficult to put across in writing.

One law firm we know videos its internal workshops and brainstorming sessions so that absent team members can see what they missed and attendees can refer back to what was discussed.

4. Consistent and effective training

Training is important but it’s costly to bring lots of employees together in one place. And, if there are lots of sessions on the same topic it can be difficult to ensure consistency of message.

Training videos save time as well as the cost of hiring training venues and travel. Another advantage is that the message is always the same. Plus, employees can learn at their own pace by stopping the video and rewatching any parts that weren’t clear first time round.

5. Create a community

“Culture eats strategy for breakfast,” is a well-worn quote for good reason – it’s true. Many leading businesses highlight their culture as critical to their success. This starts by making staff feel valued and part of something special. In large businesses, especially those spread across several locations, that can be a challenge. Some people rarely meet their colleagues face-to-face, if at all, and communication becomes an endless series of emails or group chats.

Video adds that essential human element and can be used for all sorts of things including celebrating awards and successes, sharing footage of events, and making news announcements. 

To discuss how video can help your employee engagement and internal comms, please get in touch.

About the Author

Nathan Haines

Nathan is the managing director of Element 26 and an expert in video production and video marketing. Nathan enjoys supporting companies to grow their businesses using video. Get in touch on Twitter @element26uk