Need to create a custom page for your streaming content to live on? IBM Cloud Video and Ustream now have customizable channel pages for Streaming Manager and Ustream Pro Broadcasting. This enables easy branding or no branding, offering white label video solutions for enterprises. This allows control over navigation and branding on automatically generated pages. These features are toggleable as well, allowing companies to quickly make changes.
- What Are Channel Pages
- New Header Experience
- No Header Feature
- Custom Header Feature
- Use Cases for White Label Video Solutions
- Suppressed Ustream Features
What Are Channel Pages
Channels are an intricate part of IBM Cloud Video and Ustream. Each channel contains its own live stream, use of which is optional, and an accompanying video library, the use of which is also optional. Viewable from the dashboard of an account, these channels allow individual settings. This makes it easier to customize them and designate specific use cases for them. For example, one channel might be for webinars and gated with a registration gate. Another channel page might be for brand awareness and related to acquisition that needs its own branding. Channels allow assets to be sorted any numbers of way, including by department or use case.
Once created, a channel page is generated for each. These pages contain a video player, a side module (which can be a description, a Q&A module, a chat module, or all of the above) and a list of related videos or other channels, depending on how this channel is setup.
It should be noted that these channel pages can be disabled if desired. This can help if a content owner wants to more discreetly control accessibility and is part of a suite of video access and restriction features.
New Header Experience
Prior to this new feature, the header on external channel pages would feature branding from Ustream or would have no header at all if done through an IBM Cloud Video account. Below is the Ustream version of this header.
Naturally, there is a desire to have more control over this experience. To utilize a more white label and customizable approach.
This new feature allows for either the ability to disable it outright or customize it. To control this, one has to go to the “channel page” sub menu after selecting a channel. This provides a variety of options that were added as part of the new viewer experience, including control over:
- The cover image
- About section
- Featured videos
- Listing recorded videos
- Listing other channels
The new option here includes the ability to control the header, and various settings related to it.
No Header Feature
As implied, the ability to disable the header will remove it outright. This frees up space on the page, minimizing distractions and placing more attention on the video content. This option is new for Ustream accounts, while it remains the default option for IBM Cloud Video users.
While a cleaner look can be appealing, and is easier to setup, there can be a desire to tailor the page design as well. To alter the page to make it more inline with a company’s branding and navigation. This is where customizing the header comes into play.
Custom Header Feature
This option allows you to control both the branding and navigation for the header. This includes being able to upload a logo, which needs to be below 1MB in size but can be a jpeg, gif or png file.
Header links, both the destination URL and the wording, are also managed from this panel. This can provide an extra location to place a CTA (call to action). It can also mimic some rudimentary site navigation found on the main site of the company.
Up to five links can be included in the header. In the event the text for the links exceeds the available space, the header will appear on two lines. However, most viewing resolutions should be able to easily display all five links. It’s rare that the copy will exceed more than 130 characters, a scenario where this will happen at 1440 x 900 resolution.
Use Cases for White Label Video Solutions
One of the interesting elements of this feature is that each channel can have its own header experience. This opens up avenues for how the channel page header can be approached and use cases for each.
Probably the most common use case will be to synchronize the appearance across all channels. Same logo and same links. Five links, however, is often not enough to cover a complete unison approach to a website’s normal navigation, although the most important landing pages can be prioritized.
Going after different audiences for each of your products? The header links could be customized for each, offering different landing pages. Perhaps one link is used to lead to white papers that are most relevant to the target audience. Another option can be linking to datasheets for that product as well, allowing individuals to get a bit more clarity while not having to sift through assets related to other products.
Multi Brand Focused
Companies who work hard to maintain many active brands with their own product portfolios can appreciate being able to customize the look for each. Not only can the links be catered to the specific “sub-brand”, but also the logo as well. In fact, several channels can be under the same sub-brand, and linked to one another through the “other channels” option.
Quick Branding Changes
Designed a new logo? Merged with another company and now have a new name? The custom header can quickly be edited through the dashboard of an account. These changes will then be reflected virtually instantly after being committed. This also applies for any navigation links, which can quickly be cycled out for the latest content.
Suppressed Ustream Features
While not impacting IBM Cloud Video, there are a few Ustream features that are not compatible when using either the no header or custom header option. As a result, these features become hidden from the channel page and the dashboard automatically. These features include:
- IRC Chat
- Social Stream
- Twitter tab
- Remind Me
Many of these features are engagement focused. Other engagement features not mentioned, such as the Q&A module, work when this is enabled. In addition, new features are being developed that will be compatible when the header is not visible or customized that will replace some of the features above.
The new channel page header gives enterprises a great way to customize their video efforts. It can be used to match branding and control desired navigation on these pages. Flexibility in being able to easily add or remove these settings allow companies to quickly update branding as needed.
Interested in trying out IBM Cloud Video Streaming Manager and testing out this new feature?