5 Things to Look For In a Sales Enablement Solution

Once upon a time, some good conversation, a few samples, and a firm handshake was all one needed to successfully close a sales deal. But no more: Selling is more complex than ever, and often requires the help and input from multiple teams across the organization.

If you feel like closing a deal is getting more difficult, you’re not wrong: SiriusDecisions found that the length of sales cycles has grown 24% in the last two years…and even if you do manage to get people through most of the cycle, many decision-makers are still having a difficult time taking that next step. 

While these challenges are big, they are not insurmountable. In fact, next-gen enterprises have been using sales enablement solutions to solve some of these very pain points. And no wonder: a recent Forrester study revealed enterprises that implement an interactive sales enablement platform can accelerate deal closure by up to 43% and drive company growth by up to 60%. 

Benefits of a Sales Enablement Platform

The value a good sales enablement platform can provide your organization cannot be overstated. If you choose the right solution, your enterprise will see benefits like:

  • Increased sales productivity
  • Increased sales effectiveness
  • Consistent messaging, as these platforms ensure sellers aren’t using outdated templates or content, protecting the brand 
  • Greater visibility into what assets sellers are using so you know what works and what doesn’t 
  • Improved product education. After all, you can’t sell what you don’t know. Sales enablement platforms let your reps access all the information they need at any time 
  • The ability to monitor what content is being used 
  • The ability to track how engaged team members and prospects are with the content 

Choosing the Right Platform for Your Business

When it comes to choosing a solution for your enterprise, there are a lot of tools on the market and it can be difficult to know where you should begin in your evaluation process. 

We won’t lie: there are plenty of sales enablement tools on the market. Some better than others. But it’s critical to note that not all of these platforms are created equal and you need to take your specific needs and use case into consideration during the evaluation process. While all have plenty of baseline functions for the casual users, there are few that really go above and beyond to improve the day-to-day lives of sellers or truly provide them with all the tools they need to be successful. 

These are the main points you should be considering when evaluating sales enablement software for your enterprise:

Content Management 

The backbone of any sales organization is content. Sure, there was a time when customers only engaged with content once they reached a certain point with the sales cycle but the most agile companies know that is no longer the case and are adapting their sales enablement strategies to compensate. 

If you’re not already incorporating content into your sales process, you’re missing out on a huge revenue opportunity. Consider these stats:

But this consideration isn’t about creating great content (we have another post that addresses this), it’s about how you can best manage it for the greatest impact and how the right creation tools can help your reps go above and beyond for their prospects. 

When considering a sales enablement portal for your organization, it should be with the understanding that this will become the central hub for all sales collateral, be it product sheets, demo videos, case studies, presentations, and so on. But more than that, when you find a portal that empowers your reps to become content creators, you enable them to customize the sales funnel like never before. 

Think about it: there is no such thing as a one size fits all approach to a sale; every organization is contending with its own issues, pain points and priorities. That’s why customizing the purchase process is so powerful. In fact, 77% of consumers have chosen, recommended, or paid more for a brand that provides a personalized service or experience.

If your reps are sending standard, off-the-shelf information to prospects that don’t reflect the company’s particular use case or feels ingenuine, your lead will see through it right away. Not to mention, when it comes to serving the right content, time is often of the essence, with 30-50% of sales going to the vendor that’s most responsive.

By using a sales enablement solution (such as CircleHD’s), teams are able to quickly create customized video or audio content that can be shared securely in just a few minutes, much less time than it takes to have an outside team put together and design any new assets.  

Search Capabilities

It’s not enough to have great content anymore: it also needs to be easily stored and searchable. Sales reps spend close to 43 hours every month searching for information. That’s over 500 hours a year. Imagine what each member of your team could do if they got even a fraction of that time back (hint: the answer is selling more)

Suffice to say, your sales enablement portal should provide your team with strong search capabilities to reduce the amount of time they waste looking for content. And we’re not just talking about the kind that utilizes standard Google-type searches, either. With all the advances in technology, reps should be able to go beyond keywords and titles and be able to find any tidbit they need using relevant tags, additional metadata and emerging technologies like speech to text search, which is ideal for finding where words and phrases occur in spoken content like audio and video. 

Time to Value

When you’re looking to introduce a new product to your company’s tech stack, you need to consider how much time will pass before it actually becomes useful to your team. This process can be particularly painful for those implementing cumbersome Learning Management Solutions (LMS) or trying to migrate a large volume of distributed assets to one platform, as is usually the case for sales enablement solutions.

In order to provide the optimum value to your organization the sales enablement platform you should choose needs to be: 

  • Quick to implement
  • Fast to get started with
  • Easy to use in order to drive adoption. It also helps if you choose a solution that has an interface and UX similar to sites your workers have probably already used (a good example of this is CircleHD’s YouTube-like back end that shortens the learning curve for those familiar with the website) 

If you look for a platform that is intuitive and simple, you’ll start seeing ROI from your investment sooner.

Analytics

It can be a struggle to fully understand what type of content is making an impact, what you should do more of, and what is falling flat. That’s why it’s critical to go beyond traditional data points and look for a sales enablement solution that will help you correlate content to revenue.

Data doesn’t lie: when sales teams create and distribute content that is meaningful to their audience, they are radically more effective. Look for a platform that will let you capture what content was presented, who it was given to, and how long they were engaged with it. Understanding what is driving conversions helps your marketing team focus on creating assets that will be more useful to your salesforce. 

Flexibility and Security

Whichever solution you choose, it will become an integral part of your company’s technology ecosystem. This in mind, you should choose a sales enablement portal that:

  • Has a flexible and open API
  • Integrates with the other programs your organization is already using
  • Allows you to build some extra functionality if the platform doesn’t meet all your requirements as is (hint: we can build custom features for you at CircleHD)
  • Is able to be branded so the portal feels like a natural extension of your company, not an outside solution. This is particularly important for creating a consistent buyer experience. 

It should also go without saying that any sales enablement software you select needs to be secure, whether you’re sharing proprietary information or not. Anyone working in today’s digital world knows one of the greatest concerns for organizations is their sensitive information being stolen or leaked. That in mind, your vendor should employ the latest security measures and protocols so you can rest assured that your most content is safe and protected. 

With the right solution on your side, you can create a modern sales enablement program that helps your reps have a bigger impact, increase prospect satisfaction, and ultimately grow your company’s revenue. 

————-

If you’d like to learn more about how CircleHD’s Sales Training, Coaching, and Enablement solution can help your organization propel your reps to new heights, we’d love to speak with you. Let’s talk


Microsoft Stream and Best-of-Breed Video Management Platforms

When evaluating a content management platform for your company’s onboarding, training, sales enablement, or internal communications efforts, it’s easy to get overwhelmed by options. While many seem similar on the surface, once implemented, you may find key functionalities missing or worse, encounter a difficult user experience. That’s why we’re putting together a series of blog posts to help guide you in your solution evaluation process. Today, we’ll be talking about Microsoft Stream.

At first glance, Microsoft’s Stream offering seems attractive, especially if offered at no cost as part of a bundle with Office 365 (note: it’s not actually free. Users have noted that you need to get Office 365 licensing for administrator accounts before you can manage Stream). But when looking into the ability to store, organize and share video and other dynamic content, it makes sense to take a closer look at what specific functionality is available.

Native Recording Tools and Support for External Content

Video platforms often feature a range of bells and whistles, but often core functionalities like native recording are missing. This is a problem since it forces users to either purchase another tool to complement the solution or requires someone on your team have sophisticated video production knowledge.

In the past, uploading original video content to Microsoft Stream was complicated and cumbersome at best. Today, they have fully-integrated recording tools.

Similarly, CircleHD enables users to upload any previously created media like video to the platform, but it also offers support for slides, text content, and audio files like podcasts. Since the solution has built-in audio and video recording tools, users are able to produce, upload, and share new content in a matter of minutes without the need for any extra production tools.

But unlike Microsoft Stream, CircleHD’s platform offers a wide range of support for both internal and external content. Not only does the platform support importing video directly from YouTube and 243 other sources, but it also lets you go beyond uploading so you can share media with audiences outside of your organization. That means partners, customers, and other cohorts are able to receive your content should you wish to distribute it, whether for training, sales, marketing purposes–or something else. 

Channels

We all know that it isn’t enough to just create new content, you also need an effective way to store it.

Both Microsoft Stream and CircleHD allow you to create public and private channels where your files can be hosted, but the latter is a little more flexible. While Stream has no way to disable a user’s ability to add and remove videos from company-wide channels, CircleHD encourages administrators to take ownership of the platform’s channel settings. This means you have the option to curate content yourself or, alternatively, grant permissions to department leaders so they may customize it based on the team’s needs and goals.

Playlists

While Channels are a great way to sort content, sometimes, they don’t go far enough. Most organizations need the ability to order and sequence content for optimum training purposes, not just the ability to save it in a particular bucket. That’s where playlists come in.

CircleHD allows users to sort video, slide, and podcast content into playlists, similar to YouTube–a basic function that is not available in Stream. If you’re looking for your content management platform to serve any sort of training or onboarding purpose, this feature is a must-have, as it makes creating custom courses simple and intuitive.

Quizzes, Gamification and Certification

Studies have shown that 65 percent of information is forgotten just seven days after a training session. After six months, that number jumps to 90 percent. But these stats aren’t unique to training–they also apply to all-hands meetings, department sync ups, sales seminars, and more. Incorporating video is just one piece of the puzzle when it comes to encouraging knowledge retention across your organization–you should also be incorporating quizzes to fight against information loss.

Microsoft offers this capability, but not natively: you’ll need to use their Forms product in tandem. This might be a roadblock for the typical user who just wants to pair a simple test with content.

By contrast, CircleHD lets you create quizzes directly on the platform and easily integrate it with your content–whether it’s a standalone piece or part of a training track. Some other companion features include the ability to generate certificates upon the completion of a course and the option to enable a leaderboard for those teams that are particularly driven by healthy competition (we’re looking at you, sales).

It’s possible some of these functions may someday be added to the Microsoft Stream roadmap, and perhaps later released. Until then, it may make sense for your organization to go with a more comprehensive video management platform if you’re looking for these particular features.

Closed-Captioning

It’s today’s world, it’s not enough to just produce great video content, you also need to make sure it’s accessible to everyone in your organization. While both Stream and CircleHD have automatic transcription tools, CircleHD supports multiple closed-captioning for video, letting end-users upload video with captions in multiple languages. 

Access Controls

Permissions for content can create additional security concerns for enterprises. After all, you want to be sure that sensitive information isn’t leaked and is only being shared with your intended recipients. Both Microsoft Stream and CircleHD have admin management features for videos and channels, as well as the ability to make content private, but CircleHD allows you to restrict your content to certain groups or individuals. You can also use active directory groups and HRIS attributes, such as department and cost center names, to limit access to a specific audience.

CircleHD’s access control settings

Interestingly, in Stream, there is no feature to securely share videos and other content with third parties like partners and customers, something CircleHD is able to do without sacrificing security.

Content Discovery

Did you know sales reps spend close to 43 hours every month searching for information? That’s over 500 hours a year. Even if you’re not in sales, chances are, you spend a lot more time than you’d like looking for documents and other information. Imagine what you could get done if you got even a fraction of that time back? That’s why it’s so critical to ensure your content management platform has a user-interface that makes search quick, easy, and intuitive. CircleHD makes search easier with tags, metadata, and custom fields so you can set your own classification parameters.

A great feature both platforms have is the ability to search channels and videos using intelligent speech to text transcription capabilities. This means you are able to find where specific words and phrases occur in your content. No more wondering, “who said that?”

Reporting and Analytics

Reporting is an area where many solutions often fall short but it’s such a critical component of communications success. After all, if you don’t know how people are engaging with your content, it’s impossible to have a full understanding of how to iterate and pivot your strategy to achieve your goals.

Stream has access to likes, views, and comments data, but not much else. CircleHD has a robust analytics suite with built-in employee segmentation and KPI tools so you get key insights like who is viewing your content, when they are viewing it, for how long, and more. Their playlist analytics can also track if employees are viewing your content alongside a quiz when it’s assigned, and let you see how team members are progressing.

Since CircleHD’s reporting capabilities are so extensive and able to give administrators a detailed picture of department and employee-level engagement, enterprises are able to clearly see the ROI of video usage across the organization. 

Integration with Cloud Web Conferencing

Recording and managing online meetings and webinars is fast becoming one of the main use cases for video content. While many platforms claim they integrate with the top conferencing solutions, the way they integrate can have big impacts on usability.

Of course, Microsoft Stream supports its own proprietary webcast solutions, but it seems these days, everyone has their own preference for which platform to use. Even if you use a Microsoft product for some of your webcasts, your recorded Zoom, Slack, WebEx, and GoToMeeting sessions will not be auto-saved to your Stream repository.

By contrast, CircleHD has native integrations that support all of these platforms (as well as over 200 other integrations…but that’s for another time), which can be a life-saver when it comes to keeping all your recordings (and sanity) in one place.

Cost

You might be thinking, “All these features are great, but what’s it going to cost me?”

The good news is that CircleHD is actually one of the most competitively-priced solutions on the market today, with user seats coming in at a mere $4.99 per person plus custom pricing for larger enterprises. The standard business plan gets you a whopping TB of bandwidth per month and 4 TB’s of storage.

By contrast, Microsoft Stream can get pretty pricey. According to their website, “Microsoft Stream includes a base amount of storage. A Microsoft Stream tenant receives a fixed allocation of 500 GB of storage and an additional 0.5 GB of storage per licensed user…Additional Microsoft Stream storage is available for purchase separately.”

And the costliness of Stream has not gone unnoticed with multiple posts on their own forum commenting on it, including this one: “I was reviewing [the storage page] to explain Storage in Stream to a colleague and why some organizations disable uploads to Stream.  I was also shocked when I read that an additional 500 GB of Stream storage would cost $1200 a year.  I understand that Stream storage has much more value (searchable transcript, player, captions, etc) than a 500 GB disk drive which you can buy for between $30 – $80, but $1200 each and every year for an additional 500 GB of storage seems excessively high to me.”

With additional features, more flexibility, and higher storage limits, CircleHD is the clear winner here. 


We Can’t Breathe

We at CircleHD are shocked and saddened by the events which have taken place, not only in our community, but across the country. When one of us hurts, we all hurt and we stand in solidarity against racism and injustice wherever they are.

“We are deeply saddened by the horrific incident and death of  George Floyd,” said CircleHD, Santosh Sahoo. “Our team stands by the family of Mr. Floyd, and everyone protesting for equality and justice.”

If you’d like to donate time or resources to support our brothers and sisters, please consider the following organizations:

National

LGBTQ FundBail fund providing relief to jailed LGBTQ people in 15 states and counting.

Campaign ZeroOrganization that utilizes research-based policy solutions to end police brutality in the U.S.

Unicorn RiotNonprofit media collective dedicated to exposing the root causes of social, economic, and environmental issues.

Minnesota

George Floyd Memorial FundThe official GoFundMe to support the Floyd family.

Minnesota Freedom FundCommunity-based fund set up to pay criminal bail and immigration bonds for individuals who have been arrested while protesting police brutality.

Black Visions CollectiveMinnesota-based black, trans, and queer-led organization committed to dismantling systems of oppression and violence.

Reclaim the Block: Coalition that advocates for and invests in community-led safety initiatives in Minneapolis neighborhoods.

California

Peoples City Council Freedom Fund: Los Angeles-based fund helping to pay for legal support, bail, fines, and court fees for arrested protesters in the city, as well as medical bills and transportation for injured protesters, supplies for field medics, and direct support to L.A.’s Black Lives Matter chapter.

Silicon Valley Democratic Socialists of America Bail FundThe Oakland/San Jose chapter of DSA is currently allocating donations to a temporary bail fund, as well as a COVID-19 aid fund.

Colorado

Colorado Freedom FundProviding bail relief to protesters and other individuals across the state of Colorado. CFF has also been providing protest updates on its webpage.

Georgia

Atlanta Solidarity Fund: Action Network fund set up to support the George Floyd protesters with both bail and necessary legal relief.

Illinois

Chicago Community Bond FundOrganization committed to posting bail for individuals in Cook County, Illinois, who are unable to post bail themselves.

Kentucky

Louisville Community Bail FundBail, legal, and support fund for activists in Louisville.

Maryland

Baltimore Action Legal TeamBail fund and legal relief for the city of Baltimore, with a focus on black activists.

Massachusetts

Massachusetts Bail FundWorking to post bails up to $2,000 in Essex and Suffolk Counties in Massachusetts.

Michigan

Detroit Bail FundBail fund launched by a local activist to provide relief to the city’s protesters.

New York

Brooklyn Bail FundCommunity bail fund for Brooklyn’s incarcerated individuals. The nonprofit recently pivoted its focus to bail reform, but organizers have committed to helping those arrested in this week’s protests and are providing support to other bail funds across the country.

May 2020 Buffalo Bail Fund: Fundraiser set up to provide bail for those protesting in Buffalo, New York.

Ohio

Columbus Freedom FundBail fund committed to helping those arrested for protesting in Columbus.

Oregon

PDX Protest Bail FundGoFundMe established by the General Defense Committee Local 1 to bail protesters out in Portland.

Pennsylvania

Philadelphia Bail FundBail fund providing relief to protesters in the city of Philadelphia, with the long-term goal of bringing an end to cash bail.

Bukit Bail Fund of PittsburghOrganization founded after the preventable death of Frank “Bukit” Smart Jr., in Allegheny County Jail, working to bail out individuals currently incarcerated in ACJ.

Tennessee

Nashville Bail FundNonprofit committed to freeing low-income individuals from jail in the city of Nashville.

Texas

Restoring Justice Community Bail FundA partnership between Restoring Justice, the Bail Project and Pure Justice to provide bail relief in Houston, initially set up as a response to COVID-19.

Luke 4:18 Bail FundBail fund overseen by Faith in Texas committed to posting bail for individuals in Dallas.

400+1 Bail FundBail fund originally created to assist a black man arrested in Austin who feared he could catch COVID-19 in jail. The fund is now being directed toward protesters in the city.

Virginia

Richmond Community Bail FundCommunity group dedicated to freeing jailed individuals in Richmond who can’t make bail.

Washington

Northwest Community Bail Fund: Providing cash bail to arrested individuals in the Seattle metropolitan area.

Wisconsin

Milwaukee Freedom FundBail fund for black and brown organizers in Milwaukee. Donations are currently on pause so as to administer the funds they’ve already received, but the webpage includes a list of similar local organizations to donate to instead.

Outside the U.S.

Toronto Protestor Bail FundToronto activists are holding their own Black Lives Matter protests over the death of Regis Korchinski and have set up this bail fund for those arrested.


6 Strategies for Successful Remote Sales During a Pandemic

Once upon a time, face-to-face interactions were a requirement for sales success, but no longer. Even before the coronavirus pandemic hit, an increase in virtual communications tools meant that prospecting was increasingly conducted online. Sales may be facing a different world, but it’s still easier than ever to reach customers all over the globe and increase the speed of the sales process by realizing the full potential of remote prospecting. 

In times of crisis, when the news is often full of shocking and ominous headlines, it’s important to remain calm and realize that not everything is completely out of our control. There are still many ways you can make a difference. Just like you are taking precautions in your everyday life such as frequent handwashing and disinfecting high-touch surfaces, there are also strategies sales teams can use to cope with the business impact of coronavirus. 

Here are a few tactics you can use to keep your sales pipeline functioning during this uncertain time:

Stock up on Business Leads


Even though there may be a buying moratorium on companies you’re talking to, this is a great time to open the conversation and position yourself to be top-of-mind when business reopens. Devote some extra time and resources to building relationships and lead generation tools right now, even if your schedule is hectic. 

If your industry hasn’t been particularly impacted by COVID-19, you’d do well to start building relationships and have a deeper pool of prospects to work with over the long term. 

Get Timely With your Focus


There’s no doubt that most industries have been touched by coronavirus in some way and there’s a high probability that your prospects may already have significant pain points and concerns about the situation. Spend some time thinking about how you can reposition your product to alleviate those concerns. In your pitch, you should be talking about how your company can help clients adapt to this ever-changing situation and highlight key benefits that will get them through this difficult time. 

The good news is that the same selling points you’re used to using are probably still relevant, you just need to adjust the way you present them and frame the product for people’s most urgent concerns. Prospects may be dealing with pain points like:

  • Coronavirus-related disruptions to their business
  • Adjusted styles of work, such as telecommuting or disrupted hours
  • Shutdowns in their supply chain
  • How to engage their newly-remote workforce
  • How to ensure their security protocols are current and able to deal with new cyber threats that may arise

These pain points are not uncommon and you should be able to adjust your messaging to show how your product or solutions can help address them, both during this time of crisis and once life goes back to normal. 

Lead With Empathy


For those who work in sales and marketing, you can walk a fine line between being understanding of a situation and coming off like you’re taking advantage of it for monetary gain. That’s why it’s so critical to be as sensitive as possible with your messaging during this time and be sure to lead with empathy. The best part is that empathy is free and it’s the best tool you can use to guide your interactions with clients and prospects. Reach out and offer genuine help and support, show gratitude, and seek out ways you can build communities and offer your expertise to those who may be struggling. 

Get Creative with Sales Presentations 


Since many people are cutting down on work-related travel and in-person meetings, online pitches are becoming more important than ever. This may mean you need to adjust your sales process to fit this new, virtual medium.

For example, if you’re used to doing a discovery call, followed by an in-person meeting, you’ll want to make sure you are able to translate the information presented in that second meeting into a visual presentation. But a tightly-designed, well-informed, PowerPoint is just the first step. You’ll need to have a good way to deliver the information during your remote sales meeting. 

The good news is that there is a vast array of online meeting tools that are easy to use and can help you retain that all-important face-to-face interaction, even when you can’t be in the same room. Some tools you might consider include:

  • Zoom
  • Google Meet
  • Webex
  • GoToMeeting
  • Facetime
  • Skype
  • Join.me

While it can be a little daunting to change the way you usually build relationships and illustrate the value of your product, all this technology has enabled us to continue to connect, even when we can’t be in the same room. However, you’ll still have to get a little innovative with the way you present information to the client. That might include:

  • Giving a virtual tour of the production floor
  • Doing an in-depth demo that brings in members of your technical team who usually aren’t involved until much later in the process
  • Sending your prospect a video of your product or solution in action so you can talk through the demo while watching the video together. 

Create Segment-Specific Videos


If you already have a good idea of specific verticals you should be targeting, now is a great time to make videos targeting those specific areas for your remote sales efforts.

Video continues to be one of the most impactful marketing tools a sales rep can have in their back pocket, yet so many don’t have much time to put them together. In fact, 59% of executives say they would rather watch a video than read text. You probably already have a lot of information on hand that would make good video content, such as:

  • Explainers
  • Presentations 
  • Video blogs 
  • Feature tutorials 
  • Webinars 
  • Customer testimonials 
  • Interviews 
  • Live streams 
  • Product videos

If you don’t already have access to this information or are a little uncomfortable with putting these types of assets together, you might want to reach out to your company’s marketing team, as they likely already have many of these resources available for you. 

Hot tip: Creating these assets is really only half of the battle: you’ll also want a place where you can store and share them securely. CircleHD offers the ability to easily create encrypted multimedia libraries with access permissions so you can rest assured that your content is protected and only being viewed by who you grant access to.

Don’t Stop Selling


Even though things can seem a little bleak, this is not the time to stop selling. Keep going, keep prospecting, and stay calm. 

Even though we may be experiencing some short-term economic pain, and life may not get back to normal right away, it’s important to continue to adapt and keep doing business. You may find that remote sales deals get a little stalled in your pipeline so make sure to keep them warm; It’s always a good idea to align with your marketing team for helpful resources you can share with prospects while keeping the conversation open. 

Even though some companies may be withholding investment until this uncertainty resolves, if you follow these tips, you’ll be on the front lines when the fog is lifted. 

———

If you’d like to learn more about how CircleHD’s Sales Enablement solution can help your remote prospecting efforts, please don’t hesitate to reach out


CircleHD Makes Platform Free for K-12 Educators Affected By Coronavirus

Platform easily integrates with already in-use technology like Zoom for a more seamless learning experience

March 16, 2020 – SAN FRANCISCO, CA – CircleHD, a Bay-area based company known for its highly-secure, learning experience platform (LXP), has just announced that it will make its solution free to any K-12 teacher or educational institution that has been affected by the COVID-19 pandemic sweeping the globe.

“The spread of coronavirus has caused my son’s school to close until mid-April and they don’t have any e-learning resources available,” says CircleHD’s Chief Executive Officer, Santosh Sahoo. “We wanted to make CircleHD available to any other individuals or institutions also experiencing a shut down so they can continue doing the incredible educational work they do every single day with minimal interruption.”

CircleHD’s LXP enables users to use a combination of video, audio, and slide deck content to easily create class modules that can be accessed on desktop or mobile, 24/7, from anywhere–even where there is no wifi connection. The platform integrates with Zoom, which many educators have turned to during the outbreak, and features powerful analytics tools that track key metrics like which content is being accessed, when it’s being accessed, and overall student progress. Teachers are also able to create and assign quizzes in order to gain a better understanding of how well knowledge is being absorbed and retained. 

In addition to the aforementioned, CircleHD’s Learning Experience Platform also contains a catalog of tech-forward features that can help instructors get more from their educational content including:

  • Ability to target and restrict learning modules to specific people
  • Automatic transcription which enables content to be transcribed and close-captioned at the point of creation
  • AI-powered search to identify where specific terms and phrases occur in your content library
  • iOS and Android mobile apps allow users to access content on-demand

Sahoo finishes, “With schools from coast to coast shut down to prevent the spread of coronavirus, we hope CircleHD will be a useful tool to mitigate downtime and help educators continue to effectively conduct classes in these uncertain times.”

The company has asked any teachers or institutions wishing to use their platform to reach out directly to sales@circlehd.com

——–

ABOUT CIRCLEHD

CircleHD is an Enterprise Learning Experience Platform founded by Santosh Sahoo and Vinay Ubale in Bellevue, Washington. Headquartered in San Mateo, California, CircleHD brings enterprise-grade security, privacy, and compliance to company videos, presentations, and podcasts. 


4k Video Support is Here

There’s been a lot of buzz surrounding 4k video, also known as aka 2060p, ever since ultra-high-definition televisions burst onto the market. Over the years this technology has become more sophisticated with more mobile phones and tablets now offering support for 4k content than ever before.

Today, we’re excited to announce the roll-out of support for 4k video at CircleHD: Employees will now be able to natively upload crisp, clear screencasts and stream videos made with premium high-resolution cameras.

4k videos are larger, have 3840 x 2160 or 4096 x 2160 resolution, contain 8 million pixels and can be cumbersome on your resources. In fact, typical file size can range from 1Gb ~ 50Gb. That’s why we have accounted for all these variables and bumped up our single file upload limit to 10GB.

When it comes to bandwidth, we recommend at least 25Mbps. However, if your working with limited bandwidth and/or low powered GPU-like mobile devices, CircleHD will automatically transcode with a lower bit rate, creating a frictionless user experience.

We are proud to be the first enterprise video platform to allow the uploading and sharing of 4k content. How can you benefit from 4k? Here are just a few of the ways:

  • Your training videos will look visually richer
  • All-hands meetings can become more lifelike
  • Conduct screencasts without losing pixels
  • Easily read on-screen code during developer training sessions

With CircleHD, enterprised are able to mix videos, slide decks and podcast content together to create cohesive playlists used for training and knowledge sharing. With 4k, you’ll be able to deliver the best-looking content possible, every single time.

Do you want to learn more? We’d love to connect with you and show you how your organization can benefit from 4k video. Get in touch with us.


A Better Approach to Sales Content Management

Every day, enterprise salespeople ask themselves: where can I find the right content to send to my prospect?

For most companies, the default answer is Google Drive, Dropbox, or whatever file repository the company is using. But that’s not always helpful. For example, if you are looking for a previous proposal to use as a template for a new prospect in, say, the auto industry, knowing they are seeking X functionality, how can you find the most relevant sample in your company’s drive? Unless your company has very rigid file naming standards, it often involves a lot of searching around through incomplete or irrelevant search queries to find what you’re looking for. 

Solving this simple issue doesn’t need to be difficult. Rather, it’s easily fixed with an effective sales content management solution. The goal of a good sales content management solution is to have a central place where sales assets are created, stored, and organized so teams can access them at any point in the selling cycle. This hub can be a cornerstone for sales enablement, but it’s also an effective way to increase your teams’ productivity and performance. 

A recent survey of salespeople by HubSpot Research found more than half rely on their peers to get tips for improving. 44 percent looked to their manager, 35 percent to team training resources, and 24 percent to media.

The need for sales content isn’t just an internal issue, though. As more companies implement social selling programs for their reps, there’s an even larger need for a central hub that is accessible and has an abundance of easy-to-share resources. In fact, studies show half of sales revenue is influenced by social selling in 14 common industries, including computer software, healthcare, and marketing and advertising. 

How can you get more mileage out of your sales enablement content? Here are a few best practices to get you started:

Take Note of Your Existing Assets 


Whether you’re currently storing your existing sales asset library in Box, Sharepoint, or something else, it’s very likely that you have a pretty large backlog of materials, which can make getting started feeling like climbing a mountain. 

Going back to basics can be the easiest way to overcome this initial hurdle: consider making a spreadsheet to take an inventory of all existing assets, noting the name of the item, what type of item it is (i.e., a video, a PPT, etc), a short description of its use, and a link to where it’s stored. This exercise is helpful when it comes to getting a better understanding of existing assets, but it also enables you to archive outdated and irrelevant content, while identifying additional content needs at your enterprise.

Address Gaps in Your Internal (and External) Content


If you want to improve your internal sales collateral, it’s important to have a clear strategy in mind and it starts with surveying your sales force. Find out if there are any pieces of content they like or refer to a lot and use this as an opportunity to update those documents. You’ll also want to find out if there are any knowledge gaps that exist in your materials. Is there something your reps could use more training on or a new trend coming down the pike they should be prepared for? Perhaps you noticed during the inventory phase that assets are out of date, don’t have complete information on them, or don’t address some new functionalities your product has. These are all good fodder for new content. 

This assessment doesn’t just have to apply to your internal sales documents. It’s also a great time to determine any additional external assets you need to have for any social selling initiatives your company might have. After all, when it comes to building a business case, content is king and still significantly influences purchase decisions. According to a survey by DemandGen, three-quarters of buyers said the content of potential vendors had a “significant impact” on which they chose. 

Your sales team likely spends all day talking to current customers and potential clients, which makes them a wealth of information when it comes to understanding what assets are worth developing. Ask them about their communication pain points, what prospects ask questions about and where there might be any opportunities to alleviate confusion. 

But planning new external sales assets shouldn’t exist in a vacuum: your company’s marketing team is also a great resource to tap into. They spend all day crafting and refining different messages to prospects and can usually offer data and feedback on what content will sing (and which will fall flat). 

Lastly, don’t forget to look critically at the customer journey for opportunities. When you have a better understanding of how your prospects become customers, you can identify where content can help eliminate friction at various points in the sales process.

Creating Sales Content


When it comes to putting together new internal and external-facing content, the possibilities are endless. Of course, it’s important to approach it realistically and strategically. Recognize that Rome wasn’t built in a day and, as such, neither will all the sales collateral you want to produce. Identify which pieces are the priority and enter them into a content calendar. This easy tool allows you to set timeline goals while budgeting your time realistically.

But who says content needs to build itself or only be done by one person? Tap into subject matter experts at your company so you can divide up the creation of these assets. Your team is also a great resource for some of these items, be they sales scripts, proposal templates, blog posts, or something else. 

Stuck on content ideas? Try these:

  • Customer content: Case studies, white papers, blog posts, informative videos, downloadables like infographics, eBooks, etc.
  • Informative content: emails, presentations, brochures, multimedia files, informational documents
  • Internal sales content: sales scripts, email templates, product sheets, training materials, sales playbooks, micro-trainings, onboarding documentation, PPT templates, proposal templates, training modules, role-playing videos, sales education

Categorizing Sales Content Effectively


Sales has an information overload issue, which makes this arguably the most important step when it comes to the implementation and adoption of your sales content management platform. 

It’s no secret that sales professionals are busy people, but that doesn’t always mean they’re being productive. When it takes your reps an inordinate amount of time to find the content they’re looking for, productivity (and, you guessed it: profit) takes a dip. 

The stats are staggering: Aberdeen found out that sales reps spend close to 43 hours every month searching for information. That’s over 500 hours a year. Imagine what each member of your team could do if they got even a fraction of that time back. 

Organizing sales content in ways that speed up the search process is not only a productivity enhancer but a likely factor in winning more customers.  

Channels
Separate content into channels based on goal or subject matter. It also creates a search functionality that enables multiple methods of finding the right content. 

In this paradigm, a proposal that is uploaded to the sales content management solution can be assigned to a channel, such as Automotive, as well as to other relevant channels like Proposals, Prospects, or Customers.  Similar to a quantum bit of content, it can now exist simultaneously in more than one place and be found by salespeople searching from many different angles.

The beauty of a channel-based system, as opposed to a traditional folder system, is that it allows you to quickly add content to a new or existing channel with a single click. Whereas, adding new folders to a large store of existing content is much more difficult and assets tend to get lost in the process.

Tagging
Tagging is another way to effectively facilitate content discovery. If you were to create a new proposal for BMW, it can be stored and assigned multiple tags, increasing the likelihood it will be easily found later. 

Contextual Documentation
It’s not enough to know what content exists, context is also invaluable when it comes to saving time and boosting productivity. This may be in the form of thumbnails, which can provide a clue as to what is inside the file, or a description to accompany the file name. 

Annotations
A leading-edge sales content management solution should also enable annotations, which leave important insights about content for others to refer to. You might note that x asset may work best for y cohort but a video would work better for z. When the ability to comment is enabled, sales reps and managers can collaborate better, outlining which assets may help with a particular opportunity or problem. That also means advice is preserved within the content portal and easily referred to later, rather than being forgotten or lost in a black hole of email.

A good sales content management system gives your team an easy way to share what they’ve learned so you don’t have to wait for a pipeline review or a sales conference to learn what’s working–the sales intelligence is right there next to the content they used.

This functionality does not exist when you simply save a slide deck to Box or a similar file storage system but saving it in a place where users can comment, rate, and suggest improvements or tweaks to the content is an action that can actually lead to more closed deals.  

Distributing Knowledge 


Perhaps unsurprisingly: 60-70% of content produced by sales and marketing teams never gets used. After all, if it’s not getting used, what’s the point? Your sales force is always on-the-go and having one, singular portal across multiple devices is a great way for them to find whatever content they need, wherever they are. Whether they’re using the portal on desktop, an iOS app or Android app, make the content as easy to access as possible. 

Measure the Impact


Determining what sales content is having an impact goes much further than just knowing what your team is downloading. This doesn’t just apply to your team, it also applies to prospects. Having access to a suite of analytics can help you easily see:

  • What content is being shared
  • Who is sharing it
  • Whom they are sharing the information with
  • How engaged the prospect was with it
  • If it contributed to increased sales

Data doesn’t lie: when sales teams create and distribute content that is meaningful to their audience, they are radically more effective.

———–
Would you like to learn more about how CircleHD’s sales content management solutions can help your team deliver the right message, to the right person, at the right time? We’d love to speak with you. Contact us today.


What Every CIO Needs to Know About Video Security

About a month ago, a leaked video of an all-hands meeting at Google revealed that the tech giant was struggling to deal with controversial topics that have been plaguing its internal company culture. Of course, this is not the first time an organization’s sensitive information has been made public–it almost feels like we hear about a new instance every single day. From business secrets to company culture, and beyond, the non-verbal cues able to be seen in video often go beyond what is spoken. 

As a CIO, you’re likely responsible for the overall information technology at your business. Whether you’re looking to protect company relations and trade secrets, or just looking to make the information at your meetings more secure (or something else!), content made available should always only be accessible by the intended audience. This is why enterprise-level video security protocols and encryption need to be a part of every piece of tech that touches your company. 

And, when it comes to video content, here’s a guide to what you need to know to improve the privacy of internal content so you can better protect videos from prying eyes.

How (and Why) Videos Are Created


We all know what a video is, but do you know the key components of these complex files? All videos contain a series of pictures (or frames), glued together to create motion (Fun fact: that’s why they were originally referred to as “motion pictures”). Audio track(s) are then synced with these continuous optical tracks to give them life. Depending on how the audio is packaged, and its containers, these tracks may stay bundled in one single file or made available as a separate file.

Almost 5 billion videos are watched on YouTube every single day. Further, though, video is arguably the most engaging medium for everything from learning a new skill, to sales training and overall business communication and beyond. Giving your employees the chance to make their own video content is also a great opportunity for your business. Not only is it convenient, saving time and money for your organization, but it also gives you a library of materials to use as needed. 

Once upon a time, you couldn’t create videos without fancy equipment and a sophisticated setup. But those days are long gone. Thanks to the advancements in mobile technologies and modern browsers, capturing screens and webcams has never been easier. Now, videos are being used everywhere in business, from marketing to training, onboarding to sales enablement–the list goes on. 

This widespread adoption is why making content available to the right audience remains an important job. While some videos are appropriate for the general public, oftentimes, you’ll need to secure them internally or for prospects.

Protecting Internal Videos


Any CIO knows that a combination of technologies is ideal when it comes to protecting trade secrets and content. Any of the single options listed below can be ineffective for video security when deployed alone. For best results, it’s recommended you implement more than one mechanism to secure content as dictated by its business classification.

Firewall

This mechanism is widely deployed in enterprises with any kind of content security. Firewalls restrict content availability within a boundary: It may be a physical device such as a network or a logical perimeter as we see with IP restriction. While it’s effective, it prevents employees from accessing content on the go. Since an increasing amount of employees are working remotely these days, firewalls can create barriers when accessing important videos like all-hands meetings unless deployed in conjunction with secure remote access technologies such as VPN.

Cloud technologies/software as a service (SaaS) is typically accessible from everywhere. This creates opportunities for remote employees to get connected and consume company resources in the same manner as in-house employees while bringing them together virtually.

Authentication

Limiting access to employees or partners via authentication should be the first defense mechanism implemented, as authentication plays an important factor in restricting content only to those you trust. Username/password combinations may be an easy way to start, but that becomes another password management overhead for personnel and makes the overall user experience less than desirable.

Almost all enterprises use some sort of a directory management service which stores users in a database:

  • Single sign-on provides a bridge between user experience and security while helping you achieve compliance.
  • Cloud applications need an extra bit of security, so a single factor authentication may not be enough and in this case, implementing a second-factor authentication such as smart card or TOPT devices is a good idea.

Cloud Identity management services like Okta, OneLogin or Ping improve the user experience while providing the security for cloud applications enterprises need.

Authorization

Authorization refers to limiting access to a defined user set like a department or a group but it does not work without authentication. Cloud video platforms like CircleHD enable you to restrict your videos to specific audiences with very little effort. You can even utilize segments your company already uses, such as cost center or department.

Encryption

Encryption has been utilized since 600 BC when the ancient Spartans used it to send messages during a battle, but it’s more modern form has been in use since World War I. The technology works by altering bits of content with a secret key. Then letting someone access that original content again with a complimenting key. 

There are four types of commonly used algorithms:

  • Symmetric encryption – algorithms use the same key to encrypt and decrypt the content. Its usage is considered less secure when used alone over the internet since the sender and receiver share the same key. Symmetric encryption is faster and often used to encrypt large blocks of data such as video.

  • Asymmetric encryption – This uses a public key to encrypt and a private key to decrypt the video. It can also be used to verify the authenticity of a video if a MITM attack is a risk. This algorithm is slower and requires a higher computation power, making it an unsuitable option for video security, as videos are often played on low-powered devices such as mobile phones and tablets.

  • Encryption at rest – Essentially, this can be described as converting your sensitive data into another form, which generally happens through an algorithm that cannot be understood by a user who doesn’t have the encryption key to decode it It’s particularly useful in rendering data useless to hackers, should your information be compromised.

    This is the recommended approach if you’re on a public data center or public-facing object store like AWS S3. We do that CircleHD. All your content is encrypted by KMS (key management service) where the content can only be decrypted by a key that is periodically rotated to reduce the surface of an attack vector.

  • Encryption on transit – This describes how data is transmitted. TLS (or SSL) is a secure transport channel. When used, it reduces the man in the middle (MITM) attack. The content is encrypted using a negotiated symmetric key algorithm.

AES ( Advanced Encryption Standard) is a symmetric encryption algorithm widely used for video encryption for the above-mentioned reasons. This algorithm supports various lengths of key bits, such as 128, 256, 512 or a higher multitude of 128. The downside of AES is that, once the video encryption key is shared, the keyholder can continue to decrypt the video as long as it is available. 

Intranet videos are often played on web browsers, but HTML5 player is not capable of playing an encrypted video by itself. That means you can’t just encrypt an mp4 video file and have the browser stream to play it.

Thankfully, most modern browsers (89%) support Media Source Extension (MSE). Therefore, it allows javascript to download encrypted videos, decrypt them and feed them to the media player programmatically. This process is complicated, and implementation was left up to various video vendors, however, they like to support it.

Over the years, the advancement of internet video streaming has led to 2 popular protocols for standardization: HLS (HTTP Live Streaming) by Apple & DASH (Dynamic Adaptive Streaming over HTTP) by MPEG. If your users are on the Apple ecosystem, you are out of luck and have to stick with HLS.

Why do we need HLS or DASH but not just encrypt the mp4 file?


The old mp4 file format (or container) wasn’t designed to support encryption. Your HTML5 player needs the meta-data, which is often at the end of the file. To play an encrypted video, such as a regular mp4, your browser has to download a large file before playing it. This gives your end-users a large buffering period, high CPU usage, and bad user experience. 

Solution: 

Chunking – A file splitting mechanism that allows your large video file to split into smaller blocks and encrypt each block individually. Your device or browser can then download only the necessary parts to start playing. And then download other parts as needed. Another advantage is that each block can be encrypted with a different encryption key. 

Sticking with a standard protocol such as HLS or DASH has the following benefits:

  • Portability across browsers and devices
  • Standardization of encoders and encoding algorithms
  • Adaptive bitrate streaming 
  • Standardization of encryption algorithms
  • Support for content delivery networks

While encryption of video improves the security of the content, it’s not bulletproof. Once the key is stolen, attackers can decrypt the video.

DRM – Digital Rights Management


DRM is a stronger encryption protection mechanism. It can work on an existing protocol such as HLS or DASH. It’s widely used by Hollywood and streaming services, such as Netflix and Amazon, for compliance requirements. This method, however, depends on cryptographic module support from hardware and operating system vendors. 

Most DRM solutions are fragmented and available today are proprietary and may require licensing and royalty payment. Google’s Widevine DRM is a popular solution currently made popular due to out of the box support in Chrome and Firefox browsers. Other technologies include: 

  • PlayReady from Microsoft
  • FairPlay by Apple
  • ClearKey by MPEG

(Note: CircleHD has plans to support DRM in Q2 2020 for our enterprise plans and enterprises that require higher grade video security. Please contact our sales team if you are looking for a DRM solution for your enterprise video.)

At CircleHD, we believe the ease of access to videos should be every employee’s right. It’s worth noting that over-guarding content can create a barrier to consumption across your organization. Be sure to strike a balance between your enterprise video security needs and user experience to encourage adoption across your teams. 

—–

We’d love to speak further with you about how to effectively implement a secure content management platform at your company. Please contact us to learn more about how CircleHD can meet your video security needs while encouraging employee engagement and collaboration at your enterprise. 


How to Accurately Calculate Video File Size (Plus: Bonus Glossary)

Video file size can be a tricky thing. How large is the one you just recorded? This complex storage format holds a lot of information and there are many reasons why you may want to check the size of it. In order to get the most accurate calculation, we need to start by dispelling a common myth:

Video file size depends on the bitrate but not the video resolution. 

Bitrate is the most important factor in determining a video file size. Technically-speaking, you can have a 4K video with a lower bitrate than a 720p video. However, in this instance, the 4k video quality would appear poor but take less space on the disk when compared to a 720p video. And if your video contains audio? That track has its own bitrate as well.

File Size = Bitrate x duration x compression ratio

Here is a reference chart taken from sample videos found on Youtube/internet

ResolutionBitrate1 minuteRecording Duration per GB
4K (UHD)20 Mbps84MB12 minutes
1080p (FHD)5 Mbps20MB50 minutes
720p (HD)1 Mbps5MB3.5 hours
480p (SD)500 Kbps2MB8 Hours

The above table is for heuristic estimation and reference only. There are a lot of other factors influence the actual video file size such as compression ratio, variable bitrate, color depth.

Bitrate = Frame size x Frames Rate

Although the original intent to write about video file size, read along if you would like to learn more about videos, overall. This guide purposefully hides complex details to simplify the understanding of most common terms and their usage. If you have any questions or suggestions, please reach out to our team.

——-

A Glossary of Terms

Frame: Any static picture you see on your screen while playing or pausing a video is called a frame. They are consecutively presented in such a manner as things appear moving on the screen. That’s why video is also called moving pictures.

A frame behaves just like a photo, and all the attributes such as color depth and dimension. A 1080p or full HD video will have frames of size 1080×1920 pixels with each pixel storing RGB (Red, Green, Blue) 8-bit color data and maybe some more. The frames are presented usually at a constant rate called frame rate.

Frame Rate: The number of frames (frame rate) presented on screen per second is represented as with FPS or frames per second. A typical video can have 15 to 120 frames per second. 24 is used in movies and 30 FPS on common on TV.

The frame rate should not be used interchangeably with shutter speed. Shutter speed is an in-camera setting used to determine the amount of motion blur in film production.

More FPS means smoother playback but a bigger file.

The approximate size of each uncompressed frame is 5MB. At 30 frames per second, a raw HD video will need 5MBx30 = 150MB storage space per second. We are going to need around 540GB per hour for the raw footage. that’s a lot of disk space even today. Many of our storage drives can’t even write to a disk that fast. However, you usually won’t need that much space, thanks to compression and lossy encoding (quality compromise to save disk space) techniques.

Compression reduces the space required to store similar frames that have fewer moving parts. Such as a landscape scene with little or no motion between frames. Since motion in scenes can drastically change in most videos, some encoders allow encoding at a variable bit rate by consuming more than average when needed and less when the scene is mostly static.

Encoding: Encoding is the process of digitization of analog video streams. Just like getting an electric wire feed from the camera and storing the content in a .mov file. The process may happen in hardware or software. Many digital cameras encode video natively, without needing to have any additional software post-processing and requiring less storage space.

The conversion between different file formats is called transcoding. These terms have different meanings but are used interchangeably since digital cameras have greatly eliminated the need for encoding these days.

Codec: Codec is the program that is responsible for the encoding and compression of the video and audio tracks. A lossless raw encoder may not compress the data hence need a lot of storage space to store every bit of the video feed. A lossy codec such as H.264 could store the same video on a fraction of filesize. Different codecs are used to achieve a balance between quality and storage space.

H.264 aka AVC (Advanced Video Coding) by the MPEG group is internets current popular codec. This codec is widely supported by most mobile devices, web browsers, and operating system vendors thankfully requiring many different formats for playback like the old days.

Mp3 by MPEG group and AAC (Advanced Audio Coding) by Apple are the most popular audio codec on the internet. Since the mp3 patents have expired AAC is being recommended. 

A newer video codec H.265 aka High-Efficiency Video Coding or HEVC is now available as the successor of the H.264 codec. H.256 provides better compression and faster decompression. This codec is being promoted for use by video pioneers such as Netflix and Youtube to improve the streaming video quality and experience, especially on slower connections.

Containers: Often called file formats such as MP4, MOV, AVI, WMV, MKV, and WebM. There are a lot of different container formats. MP4 is very popular on the web and WebM is an open container format being actively promoted by Google for royalty-free internet use. 

The container is a file format that describes how the tracks (video/audio/subtitles) stored inside the file. The file format is just a matter of choice often used along with well-known codecs that work together. Some containers allow streaming video playback while others require the file to be downloaded entirely before playback. Since these container formats support different feature sets and require some agreement and royalty payment by the manufacturer, vendors tend to prefer one format over another.

If you like to learn more here is a detailed comparison on Wikipedia.

MP4: MP4 (MPEG-4 Part 14) is a well-known internet container/file format that is supported by a wide range of devices such as mobile phones and digital cameras. This container allows storage of multiple video, audio, subtitles, and other metadata, where containers such as mp3 container only allowed audio tracks and a limited set of metadata inside it. A variant of this format supports progressive streaming, this is the most preferred format for internet video playback. 

Above are the main factors used for determining the file size.

HDR: High dynamic range. Modern TVs and cameras are able to capture greater details of images and video in senses that contain brighter and dark objects. In traditional SDR (Standard dynamic range) images were either bright or dark depending on the contrast application. HDR format can, however, capture more information per pixel (32 bits) and let the display decide the actual contract at the time of presentation. This method requires double the amount of storage file size and some advanced compression technique that can impact the final file size when applied.

Audio: Some containers allow multiple audio tracks embedded in the video files. Hence the size of the video depends on no of tracks and bitrate of the audio as well. 192Kbps bitrate is considered good quality audio for stereo sound.

Encryption: Video security mechanisms such as DRM (Digital Rights Management) that use encryption to protect playback of the content on authorized devices. For example, Netflix only allows you to play their video only if you have an active membership. This is often done to implement licensing and prevent piracy. This protection usually increases the file size due to metadata inclusion.

Video streaming: Video streaming is a process of watching a video over a network without having to download the entire video file. This technique often begins by buffering  (downloading some metadata and the portion of video currently being watched) parts of the video and provides seeking and skipping parts that are not being watched. Streaming provides smoother watching experience and requires less network bandwidth and disk storage.
There are many methods available on the web to implement streaming.


Using Sales Enablement Video To Onboard and Train Sales Professionals

As a sales manager with over fifteen years of experience, I’ve had the privilege of onboarding and training many sales professionals, as well as implementing sales enablement initiatives at many different organizations. Because each of these hires had a different start date, the onboarding was done one person at a time.

Originally, I’d provide a one-hour session on how to use our CRM system to the new hire starting in mid-August, and then I’d give the exact same session to the person starting in early September.

Not very efficient.

Today, the availability of platforms makes it possible to do onboarding better.

If a sales enablement solution has a video creation functionality, it is easy for a sales manager to record a training session that can be done once, and used by every new hire. It’s as simple as logging in to the portal, selecting the browser displaying the CRM tool, and clicking the Record button:

CircleHD for sales enablement in Chrome Browser Recording Plugin

With recording engaged, your training session becomes a video, with your narration taking your virtual trainees through leads, opportunities, reports, sales stages, and everything else they need to know about how to use your CRM tool effectively.

Here are some of the benefits of recording your CRM video training session:

Sales Enablement and Training Accuracy

When you train someone in person, at best they take notes and remember much of what you’ve explained. But typically, several weeks later, the notes are buried among other notes, and they’ve forgotten quite a bit of the session.

With video, all the knowledge you’ve shared is perfectly preserved, and it’s available to your team 24/7, whenever they have a need to refresh their recollection.

Intelligent Organization and Advanced Search of Sales Training Content

The best sales enablement solutions allow you to divide an hour-long video into Chapters. If someone needs to review what you said about opportunities, they can just review that Chapter, rather than trying to fast forward through the entire video.

In fact, the very best sales enablement platforms also allow salespeople to search for specific words and phrases, inside of a video:

CircleHD sales enablement Search within Videos

Salespeople Prefer Online Learning

No matter how hard I tried as a manager to make sessions interactive, I know they often felt like a forced lecture to my sales team. Today, salespeople prefer self-serve learning, choosing times that fit their busy schedules that often change at a moment’s notice.

And you can still evaluate how well your team has learned. The highest-rated sales enablement portals provide feedback and rating tools, as well as reports and analytics, and even the ability to create quizzes and lessons, all of which help managers gauge the effectiveness of video training.

Make your sales training efficient, productive, and easy. Deploy a sales enablement solution that offers video recording, and reap the benefits.

Contact us today to learn more about how CircleHD can help your organization with your sales enablement goals.