With remote work environments now more common, modern media management tools and technologies empower post-production teams by providing a flexible, secure way to work and collaborate across time zones and geographies.
To better understand today’s workflows, we are taking a closer look at each stage of the post-production process and how today’s tools support a distributed, often global, workforce.
We covered post-production stages 1 through 4 in “A Shift in Postproduction Workflow: Taking Content from the Camera to the Rough Cut” and “A Shift in Postproduction Workflow: Taking Audio and Video from Concept to Reality.”
In part three of the series, we explore the final post-production phase: delivering and distributing the content.
Workflow Stage 5: Delivery
Once the creative work is finished and all of the elements are in place and approved, the finished piece is ready for final touches and the transition into the distribution, sales, and marketing workflows.
At this point in the post-production process, it may be necessary to create different versions to meet the specifications of the various end users and applications. An assistant editor, editor, or output specialist will conform and create generic masters and multiple versions based on the anticipated requirements. This can often require dozens of different versions and file sizes, all of which can be organized and tracked in an all-in-one media management tool, such as Shift.
Many hours of work go into creating video assets, so it is crucial to ensure the outputs and elements used in the piece are stored appropriately. Your archiving strategy should include everything—original camera footage, camera logs, XML files of metadata, sound elements, visual effects elements, graphics, and all versions of the masters.
A cataloging and naming convention and a versatile, robust storage platform are critical to being able to find assets later for revisions or to create future versions if needed.
Localization and Captioning
If a film, show, or ad is going to be shown in multiple regions or countries, the post-production team will often create different versions for each audience based on language, political climate, or accessibility. For example, the team may add dubbing or subtitles for non-U.S. audiences or closed captioning for audiences who are deaf or hard of hearing and viewing platforms that exhibit without sound.
In addition to the work itself, promotional materials are often generated that may include trailers and teasers; photographic assets; printed posters and artwork; and even tie-in promotional products, such as T-shirts, mugs, and hats.
Many of these materials are in the works throughout the post-production process, and they are often subject to versioning and team approvals, similar to the film. Centralizing storage and access to the marketing and promotional content and the associated stakeholder input ensures that marketing creates promo content from the latest version of the film.
Distribution and Traffic
When the finished work is ready for distribution, a traffic manager or broadcast business manager should oversee the process. The piece will likely need to be sent to multiple recipients, including networks, studios, theaters, and digital portals, each of which is likely to have its own preferred specifications.
Although remote production workflows are new to many people, distribution and traffic teams have been remotely coordinating delivery to end users long before the pandemic.
Although remote production workflows are new to many people, distribution and traffic teams have been remotely coordinating delivery to end users long before the pandemic. Media management tools let them deliver assets in the file size, format, or compression algorithm that is best suited to the client’s systems. These tools also help maintain file security at rest or in transit to protect proprietary content and intellectual property that might be attractive to overzealous fans, competitors, or hackers.
Shift Supports Nontraditional Workflows
Today’s increasing use of remote collaboration makes nontraditional workflows almost mainstream. Because these new ways of working make designing workflows more challenging, flexibility is key to making sure work is done efficiently.
For example, time-consuming visual effects may have to get underway before the picture is locked. Or music may be composed before the shoot is even complete so that it can be played on set and the characters can react to it.
The key to managing a nontraditional workflow is organization. Without a well-synchronized team and a solid post-production structure, a huge amount of time, effort, and money will be wasted.
The Shift platform was built for the flexibility and organization required by nontraditional workflows. It supports the creative team and provides ideal tools for keeping every team member up-to-date and working toward the same goal, even when the post-production situation is complicated.
Shift provides robust solutions for managing, storing, versioning, and distributing all of your final assets and is a critical tool in the marketing of your project. It also helps to protect your intellectual property by ensuring it gets into only the right hands.
Start your free trial today and see how Shift’s all-in-one media management platform empowers distributed post-production teams to deliver media content seamlessly and securely to marketing and sales teams, clients, and end users.