Here is an email I received today about providing an adequate cloud server for streaming webinar podcasts, followed by my response:
I work for a small software company and we are looking to start distributing recorded webinars as podcasts (These are wmv files, approximately 45-60 minutes each. We host approximately 5-10 webinars a month and get as many as 50 people viewing these at a time).
I understand from my IT team that streaming podcasts will be a huge burden on our server, depending on the number of individuals viewing these at any one time. Because of this, we are looking into third party hosts that would be able to handle a greater demand across their farm of servers. Can you give me a little more information about your company, how you might be able to help, and what costs are associated with this service? Let me know if there is any more information you need and I can reach out to my IT team.
Thank you for your inquiry. As cloud services become the way of the world, my company has been in transition away from technology and back to our origins of lead generation via marketing strategy and content development across the many platforms our clients use, from their website to their blog to social sites and online advertising.
As such, I have been advising anyone who will listen to consider using only the most known and reliable providers, to ensure security, quality of service, and longevity of vendor existence. In addition, the simpler you can keep things, the less change you will need to deal with as those cloud platform evolve.
For example, it sounds like you may very well just need to start a blog site on the WordPress community (wordpress.com). If you upgrade to a Pro account and acquire a subscription for video and audio streaming, you won’t have to worry about storage space or bandwidth or security or updates to the software or much else. The costs for these services are all very inexpensive, compared to the more-commercial providers, and expandable as needed.
The WordPress community cloud-based platform has the essentials for a user-friendly, flexible, optimized and robust website, and what it does not have you either really don’t need or can easily import from or link to at another cloud service. I have spent so much time updating software for self-hosted websites that it gets ridiculous. I cannot honestly recommend a new self-hosted website as a viable solution moving forward.
The important thing is that the platform you choose will be there in five years and that you can acquire decent technical support. Amazon, Google, Salesforce, Godaddy and others will surely be here in the future and have the resources to maintain and grow their systems as the cloud takes over as the means of delivery of all software and services. Many other cloud service options exist, as well. If all you need is cloud storage space or your files are too big for WordPress or other cloud service prociders, RackSpace.com is one of the originators and bigger providers, though many others exist as well and just about any web host company has some sort of cloud service to offer.
I suspect your IT team knows most of what I’ve relayed, so I hope this reply helps you. Let me know if I can be of service regarding your web marketing strategy and content development. We are basically writers and marketers who understand how to gain visibility on the search engines and the web to convert qualified prospects into customers, which is what we find most companies need and want.