Viewers worldwide are cancelling their cable TV packages and turning to online broadcasts at a steady rate. In the U.S. alone, nearly 25 million households lacked cable by the end of 2015. More than 1 million American households are expected to cut the cord this year, and they will be joined by millions more households across the globe.
But it’s not just weekday sitcoms, made-for-TV movies and daily news that are migrating online. Sports fans are clamoring to stream their favorite teams—and that’s where Footters, which launched this month, sees an opportunity.
Based in Spain, Footters is an online streaming company providing a platform for federated soccer clubs—the semi-professional and even professional players who are part of clubs worldwide that aren’t popular enough to merit the blanket television coverage given to the English Premier League or La Liga, Spain’s top professional soccer association. These minor league clubs might not be powerful enough to ink their own television deals, but they have a large, largely underserved audience. With an estimated 24 million clubs comprising 270 million players around the world, Footters’ potential reach is enormous.
The live stream video begins, and the carefully prepared speaker begins addressing an audience of thousands of viewers. The presentation is going smoothly until, just a few minutes into the opening keynote, the video freezes. Some viewers sound the alert in the chat window, others try checking their own connection. But many viewers have left: On average, one in five viewers will immediately stop watching a stream with poor video quality and never return.
Most of the time, common live streaming video mistakes—poor sound quality and a broken (or unattended) chat function, among others—are easily avoided with careful advance work. Organizations new to streaming video should heed this advice from Jeff Irwin, customer success manager for IBM Cloud Video. In the process of helping customers implement and manage streaming video, Irwin has identified common mistakes that stand in the way of streaming events and their viewers. So follow these 13 tips to avoid any unlucky mishaps on your next broadcast.
Note that this list assumes that you are using a platform that is scalable, able to reach large audiences without crashing, and is mobile friendly, having adaptive bitrate delivery. If not, these would be priorities as well.
- Failing to account for variables
- Ignoring audio quality
- Not checking your audio
- Forgetting to confirm adequate bandwidth
- Discounting the importance of your location
- Having no lighting plan
- Failing to promote the event
- Being late
- Not running pre-show content
- Making a weak first impression
- Not engaging your audience
- Skipping the chat moderators
- No follow up, CTA or post event strategy
Events have exploded beyond the stage with live streaming. From company announcements, to press conferences and award ceremonies, most events today have two audiences: the one in the room, and the one behind their screens.
For organizers, the expanded reach is a dream come true, as are the insights from live stream analytics. But live streaming also requires a new attention to detail: even the Super Bowl and Apple keynotes have fallen victim to seemingly minor mistakes, amplified by the real-time nature of streaming.
To make sure live streams go off without a hitch, organizers should follow this checklist to ensure a secure connection, reliable equipment and high stream quality. If you are looking more for assistance on which gear to get, though, check out our Video Studio Recommendations white paper.
Just about every minute of every day, there’s a live stream event taking place somewhere in the world — on social media platforms, corporate networks, and entertainment company apps. From the recent solar eclipse to the Mayweather-McGregor fight to the MTV Video Music Awards, online users are showing a healthy appetite for seeking out live video events to watch.
Of course, every event needs an audience — and given the effort that goes into a live streaming event, video planners want to ensure that, at start time, there’s a large and highly engaged audience. Social media can be used to whip up enthusiasm before the event, encourage discussion during the live stream, and continue the conversation after it ends.
If you are looking for some additional advice for marketing your video content, or creating marketing videos, also be sure to check out our on-demand 9 Mistakes to Avoid in Your Video Marketing Strategy seminar.
Tour de Office, an Australian nonprofit, is encouraging office-bound workers to get more active while raising money for charity — and streaming video plays a key role.
“The growing knowledge economy is putting more people behind desks for longer periods of time,” says Tudor Marsden-Huggins, an avid cyclist and founder of Employment Office, a recruitment agency based in Australia. “Research shows that sitting for more than four hours per day greatly increases your risk of chronic disease.”
In 2011, Marsden-Huggins launched Tour de Office, a week-long relay event to raise awareness of those health risks. The events are part friendly athletic competition, part fundraising challenge. Participating companies compete for a charity of their choice, and Tour de Office live streams the action online to maximize donations. (See how a live stream solution like this quickly scales.)
An expert in North Korea agreed to an on-camera interview with the BBC in March but a few seconds in, everything went pear-shaped.
First the man’s young daughter walked in and he gently tried to coax her out during the interview. Then his eight-month-old son strolled in on a squeaky walker. Finally, the man’s wife frantically tried to herd both children out of the room.
The clip went viral, to the point where Robert E. Kelly, the so-called “BBC Dad,” felt compelled to give a press conference explaining himself.
Most glitches during a live stream don’t rise to that level of comedic gold, with a lot of them related to delivery issues that could be corrected for through scaling as mentioned in this Scaling Video Delivery to Reach Massive Audiences white paper. Very often, though, unexpected problems during live streams leave the impression that the presentation is unprofessional. But presenters can salvage such moments by taking some cues from the world of improv comedy.
On August 21, a total solar eclipse will take place in the U.S. for the first time since 1979.
“It began with no ado,” wrote Annie Dillard of the event 38 years ago. “It was odd that such a well-advertised public event should have no starting gun, no overture, no introductory speaker. I should have known right then that I was out of my depth.”
Viewers of this year’s eclipse can expect the same wonder that Dillard describes in her now-famous essay, but those who tune into NASA’s 2017 live broadcast will hear commentary, too.
The eclipse has captured the world’s attention, but it’s not the only event NASA will live stream this year. Online video plays an important, dual role for the space organization. Its regular live broadcasts, using CDNs and services like IBM Cloud Video, are a way to communicate with the public whose tax dollars support its missions, while video is also an indispensable internal tool for research and development.
When Taylor Swift launched her Wonderstruck fragrance at Macy’s in Midtown Manhattan, she was accompanied by hundreds of excited fans and dozens of media outlets. Also present was video production company Suite Spot, working in the background to make sure the event’s video live stream went off without a hitch.
Suite Spot regularly produces major events like this: filled with high-profile people, large viewing audiences and heavy logistical burdens on the people behind the scenes. While the events themselves can be formidable undertakings, the exposure and excitement generated by a live stream can be a major asset for any company.
Adam Drescher, Suite Spot’s cofounder and partner, explains how he and his team make preparations for success—before, day-of, and after the event takes place—and speaks specifically to the nuances of running live streams at a large scale. Armed with his suggestions, anyone can successfully execute their own live stream for a primetime audience.
Also, if you are looking for tips in bitesize form, be sure to check out our 5 Pro Tips for Live Video Production guide as well.
When mergers and acquisitions are months, even years in the planning, organizations have time to communicate the impact of the change to all employees. Often, however, the change happens fast, leaving little room for creating a communications plan.
But high-impact communication is necessary, and typical avenues such as email newsletters and all-hands meetings might not draw the attention of a workforce that needs extra reassurance and knowledge about the new entity. Such cases require a more compelling presentation format, which is where streaming video can make a difference. Read on to learn more about why your post acquisition and merger integration plans need to incorporate video, while also learning how the company AngioDynamics succeeds with this approach. If you are looking for advice on executing an internal video strategy for this, be sure to watch our archived webinar on Video Best Practices for Your Internal Communication Strategy.
Think about today’s video viewing experience. Thanks to HD video, stereo sound, and high-pixel displays like the iPhone’s Retina feature — not to mention ever-higher bandwidth — entertainment and news video and audio is exceptionally clear, even for the lowliest smartphone or tablet.
Now, take that audience of viewers, accustomed to the very best HD video and deep stereo sound, and place them in front of a live streaming event that doesn’t have the same production values. Dark, blurry video and muffled audio won’t hold their attention, especially when you consider that online video drop off rates can run as high as 20 percent in the first 10 second of a video.
The good news for creators of live video is that even without a team of directors or a state-of-the-art video studio, it’s possible for organizations to up their game in terms of production quality. According to Jeff Irwin, customer success manager for IBM Cloud Video, a few simple fixes and some strategic and affordable equipment purchases can make any live stream look and sound better. So read on to learn how to make a live video look professional with these 4 proven methods. If you find this article useful too, be sure to check out our 5 Pro Tips for Live Video Production guide as well.