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December 2014
Issue: March 1, 2012

Post Positions: New tools can help post houses amp up sales programs

By Brian Atton and Jay Brooks


Simian
www.gosimian.com

Technological change is a fact of life in post production. Most post professionals thrive on such change and eagerly anticipate the latest developments in editing, visual effects and sound mixing technology.  But advancing technology is not confined to the tools that post companies use to create and manipulate media.

Recently, important new technologies have appeared that can help these studios better manage their digital media assets and run their sales and marketing efforts. In fact, the software tools used for managing workflow and sharing digital assets have evolved considerably, driven by the growing demand from industry leaders for more features, more functionality, more customization and more integration.

Today’s leading edge software solutions can provide post companies with 360-degree oversight to their sales activities, reel library, presentations, project workflow, Web content and analytics. Companies that have embraced these new solutions have come to view them as mission-critical, redefining the way they do business.

The latest media management tools feature rich analytics that allow companies to gather critical data on presentation reels:  when and if they were opened, viewed, forwarded, how many times, and whether a particular clip was watched partially or in its entirety. For sales staff, that is valuable information about the tastes and sensibilities of particular clients and helps them fine-tune their pitches and adjust sales strategies. The latest platforms also have reporting features that makes it possible for facility management to monitor the effectiveness of their sales teams. Managers can instantly see which sales members are producing the best results.

Additionally, these new tools enable users to build comprehensive online presentations containing video, music, or document files to boost collaboration with clients and give them opportunities to comment and approve projects on-the-go. The result is more effective new business presentations and better project management, while eliminating wasteful and costly binders and printed materials.

Because of their beneifts it is surprising that not all companies have embraced this new way of conducting business. New technology is often perceived as replacing an existing system and forcing the user to take up something unfamiliar. Acquiring new skills, changing old behaviors and regaining a comfort level with different technology can feel threatening for individuals who are used to an established way of doing things, even if that way is outdated or inferior.

In order to reap the benefits of new technology, it’s important to get everyone on board and excited about the change. Company leaders must set an example and commit to the change wholeheartedly. They should provide the encouragement, incentive, support and resources necessary to overcome reluctance to learn and use the new tools. It is also important to clearly explain why change is needed — or example, to save time, to increase productivity, to decrease costs, to improve accountability — so that users understand and respect the need for change.

Competition is fierce in the post industry, and it will only continue to grow. Technology has significantly affected the big picture and makes change mandatory for organizations to maintain a competitive edge. The future prosperity of post companies depends on tech-savvy professionals who embrace and leverage technology to their advantage.