Yoni is a marketing manager at Cincopa and a guest blogger for Guru. 

It might be ironic, but the race towards cutting-edge, forward-thinking learning methods seems to be spearheaded by those far-removed from traditional classrooms and lecture halls. Modern companies, specifically those that are tech-oriented, have issued-in the era of bite-sized learning.

Proper onboarding and quick, efficient adoption of products have direct, tangible effects on companies’ bottom lines. With our attention spans at an all time low, organizations were prompted to take swift action. While comprehensive, traditional knowledge sharing and product adoption approaches are simply inconsistent with the way we consume media and other content in 2020.

Relying on antiquated methodology becomes an even bigger problem when the product or service in question is complex; requiring both employees and users of the platform to react to constant updates and new features. Bite-sized content is the equivalent of a no-nonsense business call:The one delivering the message needs to do so in a short window, forcing him or her to get right to the point.

Conversely, the team member or product user is presented with an easy to digest, highly-comprehensible set of directions and / or piece of advice.  

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Video as a facilitator of bite-sized learning

Adopting a ‘bite-sized-first’ approach in regards to text messaging is a critical first step. Slack’s meteoric rise to internal communication supremacy can be traced back, amongst other notable aspects, to companies realizing the importance of cutting to the chase.

The platform is designed to veer users away from diatriabes and towards communicating in compact, to-the-point messages. However, when delivering the message textually entails abandoning the bite-sized approach, video emerges as a crucial game changer; for both internal and external communication.

With a variety of webcam-based free or affordable extensions, employees can record themselves and send short, no-frills videos to teammates or customers in need of a quick answer. Syncing with video hosting platforms (more on that in a minute), companies analyze how these videos are interacted with. 

Getting a busy salesperson to share timely, sage advice by way of recording a 30-second video will prove far easier than asking him or her to write a post about it. You can (elegantly) cram entire blogs-worth of content into a 30-second video. With visual demonstration doing the heavy lifting, app users are sure to comprehend concepts too intricate or complex to be conveyed in 100 characters or less.

Product walkthroughs and short-form videos

Remember when you started seeing these pop up everywhere?

bite-sized-graphicThis is no coincidence.

Digital adoption platforms are a booming industry.

New desktop apps continue to emerge, while existing ones become increasingly complex. Since technical mastery over all the tools in our tech stacks isn’t easily achievable anymore, it’s crucial to help platform newcomers acclimate, and to notify existing users regarding new features without overwhelming them with daunting technical verbiage. Great release notes are one way to tackle this internally, but what’s the best way to share these updates externally?

Many organizations in the SaaS world are opting for simple, friendly product walkthroughs. The way product walkthroughs work is pretty straightforward:
Visitors are encouraged to engage with arrows strategically positioned besides important sections of the website. Once clicked on, the arrows prompt the emergence of small text bubbles, containing concise tips or instructions pertaining to the functionality of the button or tab the arrow pointed at.

Platforms such as Walkme and Pendo.io are successful because the solution they offer is consistent with the way information is conveyed and consumed. We all want things explained to us immediately, and in a way that’s easy to consume and comprehend. It wouldn’t hurt if the knowledge is relayed in a stimulating fashion; one that prompts us to engage with it when we might otherwise ignore it.

Ideally, video should complement existing, text-based product adoption approaches. As long as the videos also remain relatively short, users will be treated to a cohesive, consistent onboarding experience. The use of video will be perceived by customers as a natural switch to a more dynamic medium when the limited-yet-effective text blurbs cannot be used in similar, bite-sized fashion. 

Videos prove to pack the most punch in this regard when they closely-resemble GIFs. Remember the 8-second rule for video engagement? A no-frills GIF-like video is most conducive to such a tight timeframe.

Using video to encourage complex product adoption

When it comes to the really complex industries, let’s take healthcare as a case study here, information overload is a pressing issue. Investment in healthcare IT, digitization of health records, and utilization of knowledge management tools in the healthcare profession have all given way to significant improvements in patient care. Although the tools are out there to help alleviate the constant and ever changing flow of knowledge in the industry, the buy in from employees and decision makers to invest in the tools and then actually adopt them into their everyday lives is a different conversation entirely. 

SignalPath is a great example. This is an application relied on by thousands of clinical researchers to streamline the process of managing clinical trials. Given the complexity of managing and distributing the findings of clinical trials, the application is, in turn, much more involved. SignalPath users would be subjected to a steep learning curve if they were to engage with it without a robust, thorough, product adoption system in place. Providing users with a thorough understanding of the app is critical, and not just during the onboarding process. With constant updates and revisions, app users need to be guided and updated on a frequent basis.

Explaining SignalPath’s intricacies to users requires visual demonstrations.

A long-time user of Cincopa, a video hosting and management platform, SignalPath began  pursuing a product adoption system that would enable it to leverage video prompts and learning to encourage product adoption.  

As users click through the product, bubbles containing instructional, bite-sized videos pop up.

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This approach has yielded considerable results and led to platform adoption of a beneficial technology that might otherwise be difficult to promote.

The implementation of learning and adoption facilitation tools helps to encourage actual usage of the complex IT products that are the way of the future in all industries, beyond just tech.

Bite-sized learning in a new era of work

Modern work, as we know it, is likely to continue to undergo major shakeups. The need to facilitate comprehensive, yet easy-to-consume information is key if the show is to go on in the era of remote work. With tech training at the helm, bite-sized learning has aptly developed to benefit both conveyors and consumers of information. Lending itself perfectly to cause, videos have assumed go-to status in regard to bite-sized content distribution and presentation. 

Whether incorporated in product adoption software or assuming a seminal role in traditional learning endeavors; expect bite-sized video to become a staple of modern training and knowledge sharing in the immediate future.

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