There was a time not so very long ago (we’re going to call it “before 2012”) that digital video tools were mainly the concern of full-time professional media: filmmakers and editors, movie studios, TV networks, post-production facilities, etc. However, we’re quite a bit beyond that now!
The explosive growth of YouTube content, streaming video services, content marketing, video oriented social media, and more has catapulted video creation, posting, and sharing into many people’s day-to-day experience. There’s much more of a need for “everyday people” (teachers, marketers, professionals, and many others) to have a working knowledge of video tools. We’ve laid out the sections below to provide a helpful overview of video tools your business or organization may need and ranked some of the best for marketing and enterprise use!
- What are Video Tools
- Who Uses Video Tools?
- Video Tools Usage Statistics for 2022
- Video Tool Types — for Marketers, Teachers, Lecturers, and More
- Best Features Available for Video Tools
- Top 8 Best Video Tools in Current Use
- Kaltura Video Portal – Kaltura’s Video Tool Platform
- Conclusion: What’s Next for Video Tools?
What are Video Tools?
If you’re completely new to the subject, video tools are a wide range of software, from free apps to complicated software running on workstations, which help their users create, polish, and broadcast video. Ever wonder why one social media video looks like it was recorded with a potato, while another has smooth transitions and catchy graphics that elevate it even if the camera work or picture are a bit mediocre? That’s the work of video tools.
The subject covers a lot of ground, so we’ll break it down further below.
Who Uses Video Tools?
There are two main groups of users of video tools. These two categories can cross over, particularly more “casual” users might dip into professional work or use video “professionally” without requiring the same type of highly-regimented workflow and highly polished output as broadcast television.
The first group are the “video professionals.” If you’ve taken courses in video editing or animation or have certificate training in video production or postproduction software or hardware, you’re probably in this group. These folks are most primed to use high priced, high-capability video tools and may work in “video facilities” as part of broadcast marketing and traditional TV/film entertainment or media.
The second group (and, as mentioned, one that can still cross over into “professional” level) are more “casual” users of video tools and media: independent content producers, hobbyists and social media enthusiasts/influencers, educators, marketers, and others. While they might use video tools in their job (or as their job!), they did not necessarily specifically train to do so. However, as video content becomes more predominant in marketing as well as everyone’s social and professional lives, it’s more necessary for this type of person to embrace the media and video tools. These users will benefit from more user-friendly tools and may be better suited to simpler tools with lower price barriers.
Video Tools Usage Statistics for 2022
For a snapshot of the relevance of video media, here are a few stats!
- Video content currently accounts for more than 80% of web traffic.
- In marketing, 64% of customers make a purchase after watching branded video content.
- 86% of business use video in their social media marketing scheme
- 93% of marketers believe that video is significant to their digital marketing strategy
- In education, 99% of institutions report teachers incorporate video in their curriculum. While this is not a surprising post-pandemic statistic…
- Around 90% of teachers also feel that video does and will continue to play a critical role in the classroom, in part due to their students already existing habits of consuming digital content.
Video Tool Types — for Marketers, Teachers, Lecturers, and More
Enterprise users: proceed to our “Top 8” section below, this section is aimed at individual users. What kind of day-to-day video use cases do you have? What kind of video tool can help you? Let’s open things up a bit.
If you’re an individual or independent creator, these are the main categories of video tools you might need. However even if you’re part of a larger business, organization, or content operation, it’s a great move to have these functions covered in any applications or platform they invest their budget in.
Tools for monitoring social media and social media trends: These tools help with a strategic approach to creating video content. By using tools that keep an eye on the trends that influence your followers and target audience, you can plan and create content that will resonate with them.
Tools for creating visuals/graphics: This type of video tool can design graphics and video screens that will add flavor and character to your video. All your content doesn’t have to be shot with a camera! You also might use this type of tool to generate titles or animation. Essentially all the garnishes that go on a video, or maybe even a substitute for the video completely!
Tools for creating and editing videos: Video editing is an art, but you don’t need to be a Renaissance Master or even a film auteur to create polished video content. Editing transitions your clips smoothly, allows you to arrange them as a stronger story, and helps incorporate other visuals (as described above) into the final product.
Tools for hosting videos: Once you’ve produced a video, you’ll need a place to store and share it. Video hosting tools give you (like you’d expect) a place to host your videos–but also in addition to broadcast/playback, many platforms provide analytics to study video performance and your audience’s engagement.
Tools for scheduling social media posts: If you’re posting to social media, it’s a fast-paced game (especially in marketing!) and you’ll need scheduling tools. This kind of video tool helps you schedule your posts for publishing during times you know your audience is active (even if it’s not a great time for you personally).
Best Features Available for Video Tools
It depends on your personal preferences and use case; however, the following features are crucial to consider in the choice of a video tool:
- Enhanced Editing Capability
Editing is important, as mentioned, for creating polished content. Also, it helps creating impactful social videos. A definite plus for any video tool you choose is the ability to edit sound, video, and images creatively and add animation and effects in a use-friendly fashion.
- Formatting Options
By this we mean being able to upload/export effectively to different platforms, adjust resolution and bitrate, and easily produce (or adjust) videos in landscape or portrait formats.
- Direct Import
Speaking of formatting, if your video tools allow you to upload directly to social platforms like YouTube or Facebook by providing baked-in formats, so much the better. Set it up and forget it!
- User Friendliness
As pointed out, some video tools are intended for professional users; these will have great functionality but also a learning curve. If you’re less savvy, look for tools that are designed to be easy to use, so you can get going on your content right away.
Your video tools should fit your price point! Particularly, don’t over-spend on features you won’t use.
Top 8 Best Video Tools in Current Use
Rather than doing a full run-down featuring side by side comparisons of every free video graphics app (there are plenty, some good, some bad) vs. every professional grade video tool for the media-and-entertainment industry like Adobe Creative Cloud (these types of tools are great for, say, professional video editors and animators, but not always for casual users), we’re opting to narrow our focus.
This list zeroes in on a few video tool platforms relevant to business and enterprise and their features, hopefully giving a broad understanding of the full package.
The popular consumer video platform and other, similar apps in this class have their advantages: namely that it is well known and using it will be familiar to your audience. Particularly if you’re creating content in the gaming or entertainment space, YouTube can be a good way to go for a free option. You’ve probably noticed a lot of businesses using it!
HOWEVER, there are also considerable drawbacks, such as very limited branding options, the fact that your videos will be monetized by others (YouTube now routinely includes ads, possibly even from your competitors!), your video will be listed among your competitors’ videos, and in general there is little content security or limitation of access.
- JW Player
JW Player is a technological ancestor of YouTube player but can hold its own as a user-friendly platform for live streaming and hosting.
JW Player has expanded in recent years from “only a player” to supporting live streaming, video hosting, and delivery services; its platform includes the open-source video player itself as well as several other features. It can also support global content delivery and offers live streaming support even at a free trial level. But plans beyond trial/starter require contacting the company directly for prices and a guide to features.
Its benefits include the cloud-based platform which supports live streaming and VOD hosting, as well as HD streaming that’s supported by multi-bitrate and adaptive streaming. Unfortunately, much like YouTube, security features are very minimal, and it only allows for ad-based monetization. Lastly, support is only included in higher-priced subscription plans.
Vidyard is specifically a video marketing platform. It has excellent capabilities for brands who want to do cold outreach and integration with various sales and marketing tools. As with most video tools, it will allow you to import videos from different devices and edit, as well as record direct video. Into the bargain, it offers a built-in analytic tool for measuring audience data and behavior, a user-friendly interactive interface, and features that make it simple to share to social networking sites.
However, although it can be recommended for marketers, those producing content that is NOT specifically marketing might be left a little cold. In addition, it has what’s been described as a “hefty” price tag.
Camtasia is a video tool from TechSmith that’s designed for capturing your screen as well as polish said capture. The app works on Windows and Mac OS, and enables you to organize both screen footage and webcam footage and offers a suite of editing and graphical tools: effects, transitions, music, title cards, animations, captions, and interactivity such as quizzes and other audience participation. On the other hand, if you’re not working with screen capture specifically, you might just as well rely on a professional or prosumer editing solution like iMovie.
Wirecast is a video streaming production tool from Telestream that allows users to create live video or on-demand broadcasts and includes Wirecast Pro and Wirecast Studio versions. As a set of hardware and software solutions, it’s compatible with a variety of platforms and a wide range of cameras, storage systems and device hardware.
What Wirecast is very good at is creating professional-class broadcast productions for streaming and web distribution. However, if your main focus isn’t live event streaming (or on-demand streaming after the fact of live events using the type of professional, multicam production that Wirecast is geared toward) then you might find that Wirecast isn’t the video tool you need. In fact, similar to some other tools we’re reviewing, useful features might also be paywalled behind tiered service, meaning you’ll only get all functionality with high-cost plans. Wirecast is less recommended for marketers or educators as other choices on the list, and more aimed at content- and event producers.
- IBM Cloud Video
IBM Cloud video is mainly intended for enterprise and large organizations. However, its professional-tier service (which debuted as the video conferencing app UStream more than a decade ago) is a reliable platform with great customer support and a strong set of features that are very good for professional broadcasters. Similarly, its content delivery network (CDN) is a known and reliable quantity.
The drawback is that for those not operating at enterprise level, it could be too much both in cost and learning curve. Likewise, it has several important features locked away only for its higher-tier subscription plans. For individuals, a free trial allows you to test-drive the advanced broadcasting features for 30 days; try it before you pony up the cash.
Vimeo Pro and Vimeo Livestream are some of the largest video tools available on the web and offer a wide range of subscription service plans. Vimeo started as a B2C platform, but its services for beginners outshine most purely “social media” tools. Premium plans unlock the “live streaming” options and excellent privacy and security settings.
Vimeo acquired the 10-year-old streaming service Livestream in 2017 and used it as the foundation for building a second branch focusing on professional and enterprise customers. Benefits include a user-friendly, professional-looking platform, built-in editing tools and transcoding software. Drawbacks include monetization costs that are 10% of revenue, and a pricing structure that more resembles that of video tools for professional media operations.
Our favorite video tools solution by far.
For both enterprise and individual content creators/”subject matter experts” Kaltura offers an all-in-one solution with a buffet of quality video tools beyond what any free account can provide. We’ll give you an excellent user experience as well as high levels of customizability and flexibility for your content. Additional features include an ad-free experience, highest quality security and privacy, and the ability to focus on your brand and your brand alone without any intrusive content from other brands or competitors.
In other words, we can cover everything from video creation, to ingestion, media management, and distribution. We’ll walk you through a few main points below!
Introducing Kaltura Video Portal–Kaltura’s Video Tool Platform
Kaltura Video Portal is an advanced platform with a variety of features available to suit the needs of business and organizations, streamers, and broadcasters. Whichever of our solutions fits your uses, we’ll ensure a vehicle for quality livestreaming and video-on-demand that comes with best-in-class video broadcasting, media management, and security and privacy features.
Not only are our video solutions strong at enterprise level, but we’d also recommend Kaltura as a great solution for individual streamers. Students, employees, and content creators will all have an easy time creating video and setting up and streaming content within a Kaltura-based system. We want to facilitate anyone to become a broadcaster, and enable video for every use case, on any device.
Kaltura Video Portal includes powerful video creation and enhancement capabilities, and we have highly customizable video tools and user environment that are designed to scale easily and custom-fit your content and brand. We’d love to sign you up for a free 30 day trial so you can give it a test-drive.
Our features include:
- Rich video creation and editing tools
- Quality video playback on any device
- Advanced search functions
- Collaboration and moderation flows alongside viewer interactivity
- Channels and playlists
- Player embed options
- In-depth analytics
- And much more!
Conclusion: What’s Next for Video Tools?
Video content is here to stay, and, in no small part due to social distancing during the Covid pandemic, we’re depending on video to connect, communicate, and simply do business more than ever before. For many everyday people, including kids growing up both attending online classes and hanging out and communicating through video-clip-based social media, literacy with video tools is likely to become second nature! The future is most likely to be “user friendly”, as both professional-grade and “casual use” video tools seek to facilitate heavier use by all types of person. Keep this in mind when planning for the future of your business or org, and make sure you’re staying in front of the curve.
Elevate your business with the best video tools on the market. Try Kaltura Video Portal for free, today.