Situation and Challenges
Tribune Broadcasting operates a Creative Services Department, an in-house ad agency, for WPIX-TV in New York City, along with a Spanish station, LATV and a Web site. The Creative Department promotes its shows with video and other digital assets. The department employs 10 people, serving approximately 150 staffers at the TV station.
Tribune faced challenges in deploying sales promotion material around the country to its 23 television stations using traditional snail mail and FTP. Because these video and graphic files were very large, Tribune had used a commercial courier service for delivery. The system required Tribune to dub multiple copies of the videos and customize them for the individual markets, leading to expenses for editing time, courier services and raw materials such as the tapes themselves.
Tribune also tried setting up internal and external FTP sites to feed its affiliate stations sales spots, but some users had difficulties accessing the sites given the stations’ varying IT infrastructure. “FTP caused a lot of confusion and wasted a lot of time and effort,” said Creative Services Manager Ari Pitchenik. “We got lots of headaches from the various FTP software and firewalls. When we thought we solved the problem, a station would call us with a complaint.”
Tribune needed a better solution. It began looking for one through an Internet search and turned up the names of a number of companies offering digital file delivery. Pitchenik, however, remembered YouSendIt from having used it in the past. “I recalled that a show distributor from Amsterdam sent me a large video file with YouSendIt and it worked well and it was easy to explain,” he said. Tribune sent a group sales promotion to stations around the country via YouSendIt to test the service and had no problems with people receiving or downloading the file. Then YouSendIt for Business was brought into the creative department’s workflow to streamline distributions, assign YouSendIt accounts to multiple station employees and maintain centralized administrative control over the service. “It went from nice to use to ‘there’s no other cost-efficient way to send materials out reliably,’” said Pitchenik.
In addition to maintaining a corporate account for the creative department, Tribune also set up an account for the WPIX news department to receive user-generated videos from viewers, using YouSendIt for Business’s SiteDrop application which is embedded directly on its Web site as a simpler, faster way to receive content.
Why YouSendIt for Business
While Tribune’s Creative Services Manager Ari Pitchenik “appreciated the reliability and ease of use of YouSendIt for Business,” Tribune chose YouSendIt for Business for a variety of reasons:
- Fast and easy large file transfer: Non-technical people found it extremely easy to use and allowed employees to send information quickly. In addition, the drag-and-drop functionality of the YouSendIt for Business Express desktop application made workflow more efficient for WPIX.
- Easy for recipients: It was easy for file recipients to download files. All they need to do is click on a link embedded in the email.
- Supported transfer of large video files: It enabled them to send files up to 2GB which was much higher than any other solution.
- Affordable and easy to deploy: Virtually no training was required to deploy YouSendIt for Business across the department — everyone could use it.
- Ease of use: Unlike confusing FTP systems, YouSendIt for Business proved to be an efficient, easy way to transfer files. Also, the address book feature made it easy to send information regularly to the same people.
- Cost savings: Tribune was able to eliminate the costs of copying files onto disks and courier fees for delivery. In addition, eliminated the costs associated with video tape dubbing and editing, which could be up to 23 tapes per project.
- Time savings: Technical support staff no longer needs to spend hours each week helping stations figure out how to download files from an FTP site. Production team doesn’t need to spend time dubbing multiple copies of videos. Plus, each of the stations could now download the videos directly from the YouSendIt for Business site after they were uploaded.
- Timely delivery: News videos must be broadcast on schedule, and YouSendIt for Business allows fast delivery of these videos to WPIX with SiteDrop.
- Enhanced file tracking: With YouSendIt for Business, Tribune could determine how many people had downloaded a sales promotion. YouSendIt for Business’s reliability and automated delivery receipts ensured that files were downloaded by the intended recipients.