Technological advances in the last few years have allowed non-professionals to create video, photo, and web content just short of professional grade, but short enough for no one to notice.
The latest Inc magazine headlines an article on the recent success of GoPro. They manufacture compact consumer video cameras used religiously by the extreme sports community. The company now claims a 90% market share of all wearable video cameras sales worldwide. The GoPros HD quality and affordability also has won the company a number of high-quantity buyers including dozens of reality TV shows to film episodes. Add on the many commercials and YouTube videos filmed on the small cameras and there’s little doubt you’ve seen them at work.
This past November CNN notably let go a number of photojournalists from their staff due in part to the rising quality of consumer cameras and camera phones. The CNN Senior VP noted, “We looked at the impact of user-generated content and social media, CNN iReporters and of course our affiliate contributions in breaking news. Consumer and pro-sumer technologies are simpler and more accessible. Small cameras are now high broadcast quality.”
View the source code of the GoPro website or scroll to the bottom of any CNN blog (Political Ticker, Anderson Cooper) and you’ll see it’s powered by WordPress. WordPress is an open source web platform that has gained traction with many large corporations, news agencies, and successful magazine-style blogs. Techcrunch, GM, UPS, Katy Perry, Jay-Z and even WCCO utilize it. It’s fully functional, continually improving, and completely free.
Welcome to the age of sufficient quality. We live in a time where professional level quality is available at a consumer level price. The latest GoPro runs just under $300. The iPhone costs just $200 and coupled with a decent app or two and you can capture photos good enough break a news story. Partnered with a domain, hosting service, and a little ambition, a $100 a year can get you a WordPress website as functional as some million dollar corporations.
These advances mean that small and medium sized organizations (churches, non profits, small businesses, etc.) who can’t afford to have full-time web designers or videographers can produce media for their marketing and communication projects with sufficient quality… quality that looks good enough so the masses can’t tell it wasn’t done by a professional.
Look for posts over the next week or so with cost-effective multimedia solutions in graphic design, web, and video to take your organization to the next level by achieving sufficient quality without breaking the bank.