WebRTC World Feature Article Free eNews Subscription

November 01, 2013

Questionmine CEO Gary Spirer Talks Video Interactivity, WebRTC

People love their video. Not only does video make up the majority of data consumption in North America, digital video use is set to explode in the Middle East and Africa, according to Informa Telecoms & Media. Meanwhile, the overwhelming popularity of VoIP applications like Skype has proven that video chatting is a huge part of the video revolution.

As such, it’s no surprise that WebRTC’s ability to make video conferencing more accessible to a broad array of devices has caused such a stir. But what about standard streaming video? What is its next evolution? Interactivity, according to Questionmine.

Questionmine provides interactive marketing solutions through video, ecommerce, surveys, polls and other lead-generation methods. The company has invented a way to create customizable, interactive videos — whether pre-recorded or live — with three levels of engagement.

The first level involves lead generation forms and calls to action that can appear right in a video, timed to any chosen second. Videos can also be created so that call-to-action buttons appear and disappear as needed.

The next level goes even further, allowing for the overlay of surveys, quizzes, polls, assessments and more. When viewers answer those questions, the answers can be tagged, allowing the message of the video to be tailored to the audience in real time.

The final level of engagement is what Questionmine calls video branching. Put simply, video branching allows users to build a video out of clips, each of which is filmed in response to different answers to each question. The result is a “choose your own adventure” experience that maximizes engagement and elevates video to a truly interactive experience.

These levels of engagement allow Questionmine to create greater interactivity out of practically any type of video — including WebRTC conversations and broadcasts. In fact, WebRTC World Web Editor Rachel Ramsey recently caught up with Questionmine CEO Gary Spirer to learn more about the company’s views to WebRTC, as well as how it plans to approach the technology.

WebRTC World: Are you using WebRTC in a production application today?

Gary Spirer: Planning.

WW: Tell us about the impact of WebRTC on your product line. (Do you see a new market opportunity as a result of WebRTC?)

GS: Yes. Questionmine can turn cost centers into profit centers; answer customer questions via interactive video and interactive mobile video Q&A. Solve their problem saving their time and the company’s resources. Then, feed them different videos based on their answers and give them rewards or loyalty points or enter them into a contest in exchange for their feedback and/or upsell them

WW: How does WebRTC impact the BYOD market? Do you expect you are going to see Google gain more of a presence in the device world?

GS: Yes. With Questionmine, the user can accelerate flow of information internally and externally including real time responses and segmentation based upon customer or employee answers. Google will find BYOD increase their insights to what employees are seeking in organizations globally.

WW: Does the lack of Apple and Microsoft commitment to deliver WebRTC in their products have a major impact on your WebRTC plans? Why or why not?

Questionmine platform and solutions truly enhance theirs now and do not prevent us from delivering a robust WebRTC solution.

WW: Will every device and browser eventually support WebRTC in the future?

GS: Yes. Its explosive growth will mandate it.

WW: Does WebRTC represent a specific implementation strategy in the enterprise? (e.g., remote workers, call centers and other opportunities in the enterprise)

GS: Yes. Organizations must integrate the flow of information and bring the voice of the customer into the boardroom and across the entire organization. For this reason Q&A must be applied to all types of interactions and flow of information to accelerate learning and decision making. Non video content can be converted into video content and made interactive such as photos, images, PowerPoint and Keynote presentations.

WW: How important is VP9 to your mobile strategy?

GS: It can only enhance Questionmine’s solution.

WW: How will data channel capabilities expand the multimedia experience of your solution?

GS: Questionmine’s entire approach to business is multi-media-turning all forms of content and modes of communication into a multi-sense experience that makes all forms of communication more engaging, entertaining and educating while at the same time eliciting better and better real-time analytics.

WW: In theory, HTML5 and WebRTC can eliminate native apps. Do you have plans for native mobile application with WebRTC or the Google Media Engine?

GS: Yes. We have built both-social video sharing with Q&A and an interactive video Web app with coupons and loyalty points. It depends upon what you are seeking to accomplish. Most programmers can handle Web app technology and increasingly there are more tools for building and monitoring Web apps on phones and tablets. Then there is the cost of building Web apps versus native apps. Mobile Web apps are less expensive typically than hiring your own staff or an agency to build two to four native apps. It comes down questions such as the degree of personalization and the amount of data to be sent and received or content monetized which favors native apps. Responsive design is better for SEO, a limited budget and if you want to get something universally accepted.

WW: Where do we stand on the adoption curve of WebRTC? (Are we in the bowling alley? Still in the hype phase?)

GS: We are exploring its applications but very excited by its potential.

WW: How often do you have to explain what WebRTC is to your potential customers?

GS: Often.

WW: How do events like the WebRTC Conference & Expo help drive the WebRTC community?                   I feel it is a great way to meet, exchange ideas and be on the forefront of technology.

WW: What will you be doing at the WebRTC Conference & Expo in Santa Clara? Exhibitor, sponsor, speaker, etc. – what will you be exhibiting? What will you be speaking about?

GS: We are an exhibitor, sponsor, and speaker. We are showing an all–in –one interactive video platform that has three levels of real-time engagement and analytics to get customer or employee insights, feedback or opinions.

Level One is video hosting, lead gen forms and call-to-action buttons.

Level Two delivers the ability to over lay any video or content converted to video such as a PowerPoint, photo or image with Q&A formats such as a survey, quiz, poll or assessment.

Level Three morphs into a choose-your-own-adventure or video branching that feeds different videos based upon answers to questions and collects the analytics for each video clip.

The application of Q&A enables our clients to segment the answers by tagging them and apply lead scores to them. Then, send the data in real time into their CRM or CMS systems. In addition, you can re-purpose and leverage video assets or other content converted into video by uploading the videos into Questionmine and turning them into interactive marketing and sales materials.

What we will speak about is how to bring the voice of the customer into the boardroom and across the organization since many organizations are still using older traditional one-way marketing and advertising broadcasts. This results in lower and lower marketing and video ROI since they are turning off customers who have turned to social media and other sources of information about products and purchasing decisions. Questionmine retains or brings back the customer by creating as close as you can the face-to-face, two-way conversations we have in real life and enables you to measure very accurately the customer’s digital body language.

WW: Why did you decide to attend the WebRTC Conference & Expo?

GS: We feel it’s the future.

WW: What do you hope attendees will learn about you at the event? Why should they come see you?

GS: Questionmine is designed to engage, entertain, educate as well as to retain -- to create a great customer experience -- while assisting organizations in turning costs into real-time sales. We want to show how our interactive video solutions can give attendees a new way to interact and gain insights with their customers and employees. We would appreciate the opportunity to collaborate.

Edited by Rory J. Thompson
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