Archive for ‘Social Enterprise’

January 24th, 2014

Boost Your Social Business with Kaltura’s Video Extension for IBM Connections

by Vitaly.Shter

Over the past few years, consumer social media sites like Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and YouTube have radically changed the way we communicate. Seeing the benefits of consumers’ real time social information sharing, enterprises have been adopting social business systems like IBM Connections not only to meet the expectations of today’s employees and partners, but also to increase productivity and reduce costs.

diagram2At the same time, video usage has seen substantial growth within the enterprise, with Forrester reporting that over 27% of firms already implemented enterprise IP/digital video for internal use, and Gartner predicting that by 2016, large companies will stream more than 16 hours of video per worker per month. Innovative enterprises are using video to harness corporate knowledge. As a result, organizations are recognizing that in order to maximize the benefits and adoption of their social business software, they must enrich traditional social business components like news-feeds, communities, blogs, wikis, and profiles, with video. The simplest way to marry advanced video creation, consumption, sharing, and delivery capabilities with social business software is by using packaged video integrations.

Kaltura’s Video Extension for IBM Connections combines Kaltura’s market leading enterprise video platform with IBM’s leading social business software, into a seamless user experience that leverages video to dramatically improve collaboration, knowledge sharing, and communications across the organization. Think adding YouTube-like capabilities to a Facebook-like portal, with the addition of workflows and security mechanisms required by the modern social enterprise. This empowers employees with intuitive video tools that they are already comfortable using, while providing peace of mind to IT by allowing to securely centrally manage all rich media content in the organization.

Here is a short overview of how Kaltura’s new Video Extension can work seamlessly within IBM Connections:

So why video, you ask? There are many reasons why video is key to your organization’s communications, here are just 5 things to think about as you plan the future of your social business strategy:

  • Video is engaging and simplifies complex ideas:
    Both consumers and enterprises recognize video as an engaging and entertaining medium to convey powerful messages, engage audiences, and illustrate complex ideas. Video is the perfect starting point to get the conversation going since video viewers retain 50% more material than those who just view traditional information sources (according to a recent Wharton Business School study). According to Forbes, 59% of senior executives prefer to watch video instead of reading text, if both are available on the same page. So when your IBM Connection users are creating blogs or initiating online ideation discussions, wouldn’t it be great to let them add a relevant video into the mix?
  • Videos reduces cost by boosting training and ‘multiplying’ sales-force:
    7,500 video views per day on salesforce.com – this is equivalent to work done by 46 hyper efficient sales reps, educating customers on the product (According to Greney Jamie, VP, Social Media and Online Video, Salesforce). Similarly training videos watched by thousands of employees and partners are equivalent to dozens of corporate instructors onboarding and training employees and partners. “By integrating Kaltura into our virtual learning site and transitioning all broker training online with video, we have decreased the onboarding timeline for a new agent from 6 to 3 months” (VP of Learning, Coldwell Banker). No matter how you look at it, video cuts costs significantly.
  • Videos shortens ‘time to knowledge’ and facilitates expertise creation and recognition:
    Tapping into the communal knowledge base of a globally distributed workforce is one of the main benefits of social business software like IBM Connections. Add to that the ability for experts to easily record How-to videos and tutorials accessible 24/7 from any device, as well as the long “shelf life” of video, and you significantly shorten the time it takes to find information in your organization in the years to come.  Once you find the information, it is also about comprehension – it is much easier to watch a 3 minute video walkthrough, like the one embedded within this blog post, as opposed to reading a 10 page user manual. Provide your IBM Connections users with Employee Generated Content (EGC) tools like screen-capture, webcam recording, and mobile capture, and watch the level of organizational knowledge sky-rocket as a result of the videos they create and the chance to be publicly recognized for their expertise (you get bonus points for gamification initiatives that reward employee participation!).
  • Video authenticity brings people together:
    Video helps employees break geographical and cultural boundaries, with “nearly in-person” experiences that add depth, authenticity, and personification to their corporate online identity. Many of our customer executives use live video or send recorded video messages to thousands of employees, in order to create a sense of familiarity and closure that is unmatched by text-based communications. Many companies also initiate video contests to foster a sense of company-wide community and corporate pride (see this great example). An IBM Connections portal where executives and employees record and share their video messages and personal user-profiles, and where employees participate in creative video contests, transforms a large workforce into a tighter, community that takes pride in its work.
  • The demand for consuming and creating knowledge on-the-go:
    Today’s workforce requires access to knowledge anywhere-anytime on a myriad of mobile devices. With limited time at hand, and limitations of the mobile device screen size, video is the best medium to access knowledge ”just-in-time” by providing both visual and audio comprehension. This is especially important for mobile and “desk-less” employees like Sales, technicians, first responders, and retail staff who often need to learn a topic on-the-go right before taking action. In other situations, capturing and sharing knowledge videos remotely is business critical capability – think insurance agents documenting an incident on-site using their mobile device video camera. Imagine how powerful this can become with the proliferation of wearable computers like Google Glass and Motorola Golden-i, where video will play an even more central role for communicating, learning, and collaborating “on the fly”.

In summary, bringing together video and social business provides great value: fast, asynchronous, visual, authentic and engaging knowledge exchange through a many-to-many communication channel, resulting in speedier product lifecycles, competitive advantage, educated employees and constant dialogue across the global enterprise and customer base. Learn more about how enterprise video can enhance your business here.

July 9th, 2013

Collaborating with Customers and Colleagues: How We Learn at Kaltura

by Charlotte.Copeman

I came across a great article this week on the importance of “soft skills” for graduates. It’s a great read and really resonated with me in my role at Kaltura.

Having a highly technical team is a great asset to any technology company, but team work and communication are the skills that bring your technology to life.

Education is a really hot topic at Kaltura, both for training internally and for training customers. It’s great to provide great technology and a strong set of features for your customers, but features don’t grow a business or school, application of those features is what makes your customers soar.

video.kaltura.comExternally, we have a great Community Team that provide a range custom training to customers, from how to upload your videos to how to troubleshoot your server. They also provide a knowledge centre, free training videos, a forum, meetups and free webinars. Customers can call on these sessions at any time in their customer lifecycle and they can either help to refresh your team’s knowledge or to provide you with a whole new skill set. As they say “knowledge is power” and the more we can educate our customers, the more they can grow.

Internally, technical information is shared with the whole team as it grows and develops and we’re all kept well informed of upgrades with core technology, upgrades with partners in exchange.kaltura.com and upgrades with Kaltura Building Blocks and plugins. What makes our internal learning different is the education on why and how a customer would use these.

There’s a big focus on use cases, formal case studies and also on working closely with the Product Team to not only learn about new features but also to feedback from customers. We all learn a huge amount about our technology by listening to our customers, inviting regular feedback on roadmap ideas and also on customer’s experience of using Kaltura. There are both formal and informal channels for feedback, ranging from CEO calls with customers to regular catch-up calls with a customer’s Account Manager and all of these help to make Kaltura stronger every year.

In any organization, when overwhelmed with email, updating written records, responding to customer requests and managing internal information flow, it can be difficult to take time out to process your learning and experience. So how do we manage this information? How do you keep your team working together towards the greater good?

“Soft skills” include a wide skill set that comes with experience. For some, it comes naturally, for others, they are learned as are any other skill. “Team work” is an often-used phrase in organisations, but it takes hard work to build true collaboration, particularly when you have a global team. It’s also essential to remember that your “team” isn’t just internal: your team is built from developers, sales teams, product managers, support teams, billing teams…but most important, customers. If you view customers as part of your team, your organization becomes truly world-class.

As we begin Q3 in our calendar, there are a number of initiatives that are taking place:

Know Your Team

Kino-300x206-2We’ve just completed a great internal global project at Kaltura called “The Point of You”. Each global team was set a challenge to create a video showcasing your team members and the work that each individual does. The value of this is that you not only learn about the role of each team, but you also learn about the individuals that work in that team. Needless to say, most teams took a fun approach to their video task, ranging from Star Wars themes to James Bond, and whilst this was great fun to do, it was also hugely educational for Kaltura as a global company. The videos gave every single employee an opportunity to show their personality and tell you what they do and why they do it. Because the videos were fun, they were engaging and the outcome was a huge strengthening of collaboration and team relationships.

Q3 Kickoff

Each internal Kaltura team approaches the kickoff of a new quarter differently. There are no hard and fast rules, but each team works on a project that benefits Kaltura as a whole. We are usually paired up with colleagues and set a task. Some teams work on improving customer communication, others work on how to improve internal communications between teams, others work on how we recognize our individual achievements and how we work together to strengthen our personal career growth…there are no strict guidelines on what we work to improve, but the challenge itself helps us to grow as both individuals and teams and the close teamwork and open sharing makes us the solid global team that we are today.

Implementation Feedback

Once a customer implementation has been completed, it’s easy to put a “tick in the box”, mark it as done and hand the customer over to their Account Manager. At Kaltura, we think it’s important to revisit that customer after a period of time, when they have had a chance to use the technology for some time and perform a review of their experience. The Professional Services Team and the Product Teams set up both formal and informal customer reviews, and use this opportunity to discuss in detail what the customer experience was like and how we can improve. What were we great at, where can we improve, what features would you like to see on the roadmap? It’s this constant circle of collaboration with customers that helps us to both decide on the roadmap and to improve our internal processes.

CEO Calls

Your customers often get to speak to multiple teams in your organization, but if they had a chance to speak to “The Boss”, what would they tell them? We truly value our customers and every member of the Kaltura team has direct contact with customers, including “The Boss”! We recently had a number of calls set up with customers to speak to Ron, our CEO. Rather than setting up calls with customers who had a smooth ride, we tried to focus on customers who had very specific requirements and challenged us to the best of our ability. The calls have been invaluable and the reason they have been so successful is that once the calls had happened, there were action items for all. We set up follow-up calls with Product, Account Management, Professional Services and many other teams so that the customer could continue the conversation and we all learned from their great feedback.

International Teams

We truly are a global team and that doesn’t just mean that we have offices around the world. I work in the EMEA London office and we have team members from the US, Israel, the UK, France, Austria, Germany, Spain and Holland. Not only do we have team members from around the world in every office, but movement between the offices is strongly encouraged. All staff have the opportunity to work in other global offices and this is incredible for both sharing your experience and also for sharing international experience. Business in the US is different to business in Germany, different again to business in Israel, and by having your team members move between your global offices, they bring the benefit of their experience to the wider team.

Do You Know The Answer To…

We have an internal forum that anyone can send a question out to, and anyone can answer. It doesn’t matter which team you work in, a question lands in all of our inboxes and we can all reach out to help a colleague. This also works in reverse, because as you read through these, you learn something new every day and have a huge body of knowledge to refer to.

Internal MediaSpace

Kaltura Internal MediaSpaceWe’ve all heard the phrase “eating your own dog food” (or if you haven’t, I’ll explain!). What this means is that if you believe in your product, use it! We have our own implementation of MediaSpace called KINO (Kaltura Internal Knowledge) to share knowledge and training internally. We have a number of galleries that each have permissions based on your team membership and these can be used to share video on new features, new releases, what your team is doing this month, training sessions on new technologies…there are no rules and you can upload any video that will help to educate your fellow team members. In addition, there are channels that are open to all where we share and learn with the whole company.

As is written in the article:

“The world’s top employers are picker than ever. And they want to see more than high marks and the right degree. They want graduates with so-called soft skills — those who can work well in teams, write and speak with clarity, adapt quickly to changes in technology and business conditions and interact with colleagues from different countries and cultures.”

We continue to learn and grow at Kaltura, but the focus placed on team collaboration, written and spoken communication, sharing technology updates, business insight and working within a truly global team is taking us from strength to strength.

Oh…and most important…we use video ;)

 

 

June 11th, 2013

7 Reasons Virtual Conferences Will Transform Industries Worldwide

by Michal Tsur

image001Until a couple of years ago, I never seriously considered attending or launching a virtual conference. It seemed to me that I would miss out on the main benefits that I found in face-to-face conferences – networking, meeting new people and enjoying the exhibit hall browsing experience. But after attending and later exhibiting at Campus Technology’s virtual conference, my perception started to change, and we subsequently decided to try hosting one at my company, Kaltura.

In the past, hosting major conferences was a luxury typically affordable to only large corporations and businesses with deep pockets. Today, organizations of all sizes are empowered by the Web and the reduction in production costs to host their own conferences – virtually (provided that they can create interesting, valuable and engaging content).

Last December, we conducted our first Kaltura Education Video Summit, a virtual conference that showcased speeches and discussions with industry leaders and decision-makers in education, learning and training. The summit allowed users to connect and network with leaders in the education industry via a virtual, interactive environment. With just a few clicks, attendees could meet thought leaders, collaborate with peers, and download information – all from the comfort of their office or home. We even had a virtual exhibit hall, where companies had “booths” that attendees could stop by.

The event was extremely successful. Thousands of people signed up for the live event, which featured speakers from the likes of Yale Law School, Oracle, Cornell University, and more. Thousands more viewed the on-demand content after the live event. Following last year’s success, we are now conducting a bigger virtual summit this year, tommorow.

Watch a sneak preview of the 2013 Kaltura Virtual Summit:

Virtual conferences are not only an amazing marketing tool, but also a great networking and learning experience for audiences attending them. They are actually fun and engaging, and are environmentally friendly.

Virtual Conferences are here to stay for many reasons:

Easy and cost effective for organizers and participants. The main cost associated with a virtual conference is that of producing the content for the conference and delivering such content in an engaging and interactive way. My company teamed up with InterCall, an industry leader in virtual conference environments and webcasting, to create our summit, which in turn allowed us to focus on the content. Audiences from around the globe could easily join our summit at no cost.

Anywhere, anytime. People can attend virtual events from anywhere in the world, and if they can’t make the live event, they can still benefit from the VOD content later. All you need in order to attend is a connected device and decent Internet connection. . .

Networking made easy. Attendees of a physical conference often need to scour exhibition rooms and corridors searching for nametags and tracking down industry leaders with whom they want to speak. With a virtual conference, these physical barriers are stripped away. Attendees have immediate access to fellow attendees, as well as speakers and exhibitors, with just a few clicks of the mouse..

Accelerates pipeline deals. Feedback from our virtual summit clearly showed that organizations that were deliberating using our technology found the virtual event extremely helpful and accelerated their decision to close the deal. Learning from the sessions, and having access to their peers, resulted in a faster decision.

Valuable analytics. Virtual conferences offer analytics that cannot be typically gathered accurately in a physical event. You can see for example which sessions attendees watched, which virtual booths they visited, what resources they downloaded from booths, and with whom they spoke.

Environmentally friendly. A virtual conference does not involve travel. Additionally, all collateral (brochures, data-sheets, and give-aways) are virtual, hence avoiding all printed material in conferences that anyhow gets trashed later on.

As businesses look for new ways to engage audiences and push branded content, virtual conferences will undoubtedly become more popular and will help transform the way we do business in our increasingly global village for years to come.

 

This article was published in the Huffington Post.

May 30th, 2013

Watch: Philips, Zappos, Oracle, Cornell, Intercall at Kaltura Video Summit 2013 (Video)

by Iddo Shai

Here at Kaltura we have been hard at work producing our next video summit. This year, our virtual conference will include two exciting days of video presentations, live Q&A and networking opportunities. Here is a sneak peek:

  • Kaltura Education Video Summit - Wednesday, June 12 2013
  • Kaltura Enterprise Video Summit - Thursday, June 13 2013

The presentations were shot in the US and across Europe with great speakers from Philips, Oracle, Zappos, Intercall, Cornell, Copenhagen Business School, Manchester Metropolitan University and many more. You can find the full agenda here. The conference will take place online and admission is completely free!

We hope to (virtually) see you at the event!

March 11th, 2013

Creating Engaging (and Very Funny) Content Using Robots (Video)

by Iddo Shai

“Robots will take over.”

Screen Shot 2013-03-11 at 11.10.30 AMHow many times have you heard that prediction before? However, it’s been more than 35 years since we first met R2-D2 and we don’t really see many robots strolling down the streets these days. But what if you could have robots shooting engaging videos like vox pop with random people or funny company videos featuring your employees? Well, that is actually possible today.

Here is an incredibly cute video that was screened by our friends at the MIT Open Documentary Lab during their great SXSW session, which focused on innovative documentary filmmaking. The star here is ”Boxie” – a robot that was designed by Alex Reben with the MIT Media Lab. Take a look and stay tuned for more great videos from SXSW 2013!

March 4th, 2013

Brand Journalism – How to Do it Right (Video)

by Iddo Shai

This blog post was first published at Fourth Source.

newsBrand journalism is one of the hottest trends for online marketers. With the proliferation of high-quality and inexpensive cameras and easy distribution platforms, every company can now be a media company.

However, when thinking about your marketing strategy it’s important not to focus solely on heavily branded materials like product overviews and PR collateral. Sure, it’s important to have content that explains what your products are all about, but these would most likely appeal to a small group of current and prospective customers. In order to reach a wider audience you need to zoom out from your company and create content that would interest others in your space. The goal here is not more qualified opportunities and leads. Forget about that. With brand journalism, the goal is to make people aware of your brand by creating engaging content. If done correctly, you could find new audiences and strengthen the brand’s relationship with exiting customers.

 

Share knowledge

People love to learn. And people love ‘free’. Just look at the MOOCs revolution that allows anyone to get ivy-league education for nothing. You may wonder why Harvard is giving away its pricey classes for free. It’s simple. It reflects well on the brand and it establishes the university as a leader in education. It is also serves the classic mission of any university: teach, educate, inspire.

You can do the same. In any organisation there is a vast amount of knowledge that is extremely interesting to outsiders. If you share best practices, guides and useful case studies, you will soon find new readers and viewers (who might never have heard of your organisation before) to consume this content. It will most likely go viral and get picked up by other publications. It happened to us at Kaltura when our video was picked up by ReelSEO or when our HTML5 blog post got many hits via Google queries.

 

Useful tip: be specific. Use stats and link to useful sources. It will add credibility to your article.

 

Forget the Competition

If you are serious about doing good brand journalism, start thinking like a journalist. Focus on writing useful and balanced pieces that offer real insight. Don’t ignore other players in the space and be sure to give credit to them, when credit is due. You will soon find that the same players link to your content because they feel their customers could find it useful. And that’s exactly where you want to be.

Useful tip: don’t plug your product in every other sentence. Your readers are savvy and always look for “the catch” or secret motive. Don’t turn them off.

 

Use Video

The Internet is full of great content, so how can you stand out? Video is a great way. If you are going to a conference, use your phone to capture parts of the presentation. If you have access to a professional camera, that’s even better. People love video and although video is now very easy to produce many of your competitors won’t make the effort. Video will also give you new outlets – like YouTube and Dailymotion -where your content can be indexed and found.2012 player edu

Useful tip: make a habit of carrying your point-and-shoot with you. Most of them are still better than smartphones since they offer physical zoom and better sound.

 

Distribute wisely

Once you have a great piece of content, the fun can begin. You need to be proactive about finding your audience. Post it in relevant groups on LinkedIn and Facebook, tweet about it and encourage your colleagues to re-tweet. If it’s a video, upload it to video destinations, if it’s a presentation, share it on sites like Slideshare.

Useful tip: before publishing a good article on your site, send it to successful blogs and offer them the chance to publish the piece first, in return for a link to your website. Later you can publish the same article on your own site.

 

Think SEO

SEO is a major part of your distribution technique. If you do it right, Google and the market treads will do much of the distribution for you. First, make sure that your article’s title includes many popular key words (based on the Google AdWords tool). Also make sure to phrase the title similarly to how people would search for content (for example, in the form of a question). Here is a good example: Why You Should Start Learning HTML5 – A Beginners Guide.

Useful tip: use Google Webmaster Tools and have Google index your site periodically. This will make sure that new pieces (texts, images, videos) come up in search results.

 

Track Analytics

Creating and distributing great content is time consuming, so you want to make sure that you can see the results and improve your strategy. Using your site analytics you can see the top referral sites so you can know where your visitors came from. You will also be able to see top search terms that generated traffic.

Useful tip: use a url shortener (like TinyURL or goo.gl) for links you post on external sites (for example, for each LinkedIn group use a different url). This way, you will be able to track which specific posts and groups drive the most traffic.

Brand journalism is a key way to promote your message to a wider audience and position yourself as a thought-leader in your market. Today, with the use of video, brand journalism becomes even more engaging and exciting – so go ahead and try it. Feel free to share your experiences and tips in the comments below.

February 12th, 2013

Kaltura’s CEO shares his insight about the company’s past and future (Video)

by Gal Nachshon

The following article was published on Beet.TV, on February 11, by Megan O’Neill. In it Kaltura’s Chairman and CEO, Ron Yekutiel, discusses the company’s evolution to date and where it is heading.

 

When open source video platform Kaltura first launched, it appealed primarily to the media vertical, as the media industry was the first to use video online.

However, CEO Ron Yekutiel tells us, that “with the message of openness and ease of integration and flexibility,” it became clear that Kaltura had the opportunity to appeal across a much more diverse spectrum of online video users and use cases. Yekutiel spoke with us about how Kaltura is expanding into the arenas of education and enterprise in an interview at the recent Beet.TV executive retreat.

In higher education, Yekutiel says that Kaltura has begun developing solutions that integrate into learning management systems, like Blackboard, Sakai and Moodle that are already being used in schools.

Kaltura provides a plugin that allows schools to incorporate video into these systems, and is already being used in hundreds of schools. We learned more about Kaltura’s integration with learning management systems from EMEA Account Director Sergio Cardoso at the Online Educa Conference in Berlin last December.

In the coming months, Yekutiel says that Kaltura will expand their functionality in educational systems even further with lecture-capture, making it easier for schools to provide students with video content of lectures. “We’re working to provide full solutions that would…make it easier, more affordable and more streamlined to capture lecture information.”

Yekutiel sees enterprise as similar to education because “training and education is something that you do at schools, but then again you do it at your workplace everyday.” He says, “There’s no one centralized location within corporations to really harness the power of video or harness the power of rich media to enable you to do your job better.” Kaltura is filling this niche with an enterprise solution that not only lets businesses use the platform to make videos public, but also to create a local video service—a “corporate YouTube”—where employees can access and share internal video content.

 

Therefore, and as seen, plenty of work has been already accomplished by the Kaltura team in order to accommodate all three verticals of Media, Education, and Enterprise, and we are looking forward to see further development and usage of Online Video across all three and more.

 

October 24th, 2012

Kaltura and InterCall Presenting CorporateTube – Special Report From Gartner ITxpo (Video)

by Iddo Shai

(Orlando, Florida) We are thrilled to share with you the news about Kaltura’s new partnership with InterCall, world’s largest conferencing and collaboration services provider.

Today, the two companies introduced InterCall CorporateTube, which leverages Kaltura’s industry-leading open source video technology, making it easier for users to store, manage and distribute all of their rich-media content, including InterCall webcast and virtual environment products.

The new partnership was announced here at Gartner ITxpo. Learn all about it in this special video report by Russ Zack, Managing Director, Enterprise.

 

 

October 23rd, 2012

Come Meet Us at Gartner ITxpo

by Iddo Shai

We are very excited to be here at the Gartner ITxpo in Orlando, Florida. Today (Tuesday) we are leading what should be a very interesting session with our friends at Accenture. The discussion will focus on how a multinational company like Accenture, with more than 240,000 employees, is using video for knowledge sharing and collaboration. The session is titled Kaltura: Business Acceleration Powered By Video – Accenture Case Study and it will include Kaltura’s CEO Ron Yekutiel and Accenture’s Collaboration Product Manager,  Mandy Bickerman.

If you happen to be here, please also swing by our booth. If you are really great, we might share with you some information about a great party you don’t want to miss…

 



August 16th, 2012

Kaltura – Standing on The Shoulders of Giants

by Iddo Shai

Being a young company, there is nothing better than waking up in the morning and seeing your name next to digital giants like Salesforce and Oracle. Today was one of those mornings. We are humbled to be mentioned as one of 5 Top Social Enterprise Technologies for Business according to Mashable.

 

Last week, Kaltura was named one of the Top 5 startups Revolutionizing Education by Business Insider. Our friends from Blackboard and Desire2Learn were featured right there with us.

Ok, now back to work…