/ Insights

The great video hypocrisy

Let's start with a story and see if you can relate. Don’t you hate when you go to website and you are watching a video and suddenly it just stalls/hangs/fails?

Fill in the blank

Now, ask the same question to friends, neighbors, coworkers…… Every one of them will likely relate on all but one point……Which website goes in the blank.

For you it may be Youtube, but your cousin in Maine says that Hulu’s videos always buffer for them. Or maybe it is HBO Go from your coworker who lives one city over.

What is going on here?

Video delivery fails all of the time. Sometimes it is localized to one website in one region for an hour, or it can be a more generalized failure for everyone, which of course draws more notice. But everyone knows, video is failing to play, stalling, and being displayed in unwatchable pixelated glory on way too many occasions. And nobody is happy about it.

But our video always loads fine when I look

Now the big issue. Just because it is fine for you does not mean that Uncle John in Tennessee has the same experience, or more broadly your customer base in Brazil, or Madrid, or Tuskaloosa, or wherever they may be. If you hate when video fails on your favorite site, don’t you think that some of your users are saying the same about your video?

Video delivery experience is individual

Every video watching experience is individual. You can’t generalize that because you or even 100 people in your area have no problems, that it equates to no problems anywhere.

“The Internet is the global system of interconnected computer networks”

There is no guaranteed quality of service. If a video fails on your website, you may not hear it, but the customer who was watching sure did and they will remember that failure as it puts a barrier to them accessing your content. Do you think they will come back to your website or go somewhere else next time? How important is growth to your brand, and can you accept that your growth is being stifled by your video failing?

What other problems besides stalling/buffering do you experience with online video?