By Sanjay Sarathy, VP of Marketing, Cloudinary
The way consumers find, consume and share digital content has changed dramatically over the last several years. This means that brands and traditional publishers must step up their games to provide richer and more personalized content that speaks directly to their target audience. Not only that, but companies also have to account for diminishing attention spans and an increasing volume of competing content.
The biggest challenge in making these personal connections with audiences via digital content is understanding consumers’ unique desires and preferences, while still delivering a modern and responsive experience online. Images and videos are no longer just important elements of a story told visually online — they are the story. To deliver high-quality content across channels at scale, brands and publishers have to manage content and digital assets with agility, speed, and automation.
Cloudinary’s mission is to empower companies to deliver visual experiences that inspire and connect, based on an understanding of how visual stories are consumed. By helping brands and publishers unleash the full potential of their media through streamlined media management workflows and automation, we help brands connect with audiences around the world, on every platform and device.
The benefits of Cloudinary’s media experience solutions include faster time to market, streamlined visual media management workflows, and better-performing websites, social media pages, and other owned channels. This leads to higher user satisfaction, and both increased digital engagement and conversions, be it retail sales, video views, subscribers, and more. Today, 7,000 customers and more than 700,000 developers and marketers use Cloudinary to manage and deliver rich media experiences.
COVID-19 has altered businesses — and our everyday lives — in ways we could not have foreseen. Over the last several months, Cloudinary has seen customer growth in e-commerce, food delivery, e-fitness, e-learning, and online entertainment. We maintain a balanced approach to delivering both enterprise and self-serve offerings so we can service both a small, five-person business as well as a Fortune 100 company.
Our flagship offering was image management built specifically for frontend and backend developers, but in 2018 we launched a digital asset management (DAM) solution which extends many of the same dynamic media management and delivery benefits to non-technical users on the marketing and creative side of the house. Together, DAM brings cohesion and streamlined workflows to any team or brand managing visual media.
Video is also becoming central to a modern digital strategy, and we’ve seen rapid growth in this segment as companies discover how well video can engage customers.
The diversity of ways in which users consume content makes it a challenge for brands to create personalized and consistent experiences that take into account browser differences, screen size, aspect ratios, bandwidth limits, and more.
It’s not just end-user experiences that Cloudinary helps to optimize content for. Cloudinary also opens up visual media management to both technical and non-technical users, which can be a real pain point for teams internally. Cloudinary’s solutions account for every asset-management need inside the organization, removing the complexity and time-zapping back-and-forth of managing multiple siloed sources of truth.
Future of image and video
The future of image and video management is automated, personalized, and cloud-based, enabling brands to deliver pixel-perfect images and videos on every device through the power of AI and machine learning. This automation allows for the rapid transformation and optimization of media assets. With the right tools, brands and publishers can go from creation to consumption in record time and eliminate content silos because assets never leave the “single source of truth” platform at any stage of their lifecycle.
Automation improves the front-end experience for viewers of distributed content, but the future of image and video management is also an optimized and enjoyable experience for all internal users — whether a technically minded developer or IT team member or a creative designer or marketer, everyone inside the organization should be able to create great online experiences for audiences because they have democratized access to every aspect of asset management. Only then can teams deliver their maximum value to the organization.
Cloudinary can support the publishing industry in different ways that have yet to be fully tapped: native support for responsive delivery of rich media; streamlining the full publishing workflow; using AI to identify the best focal points for images and videos; and much more.
Our platform is horizontal in nature and services virtually across every industry. Where we’ve seen significant traction are those industries where visual experiences are critical to customer engagement and, ultimately, revenue. These industries include e-commerce/retail, media and entertainment, travel, e-learning/edtech, tech/software, social, and even food and beverage companies — all of which include hundreds to thousands of customers.