A few days ago, I happened to host a Q&A (Question & & Answer) session by using a live video streaming solution. All the attendees seemed to be highly excited. They bombarded me with genuine questions- some were funny, some were insightful and of course, some were absolutely thought provocative. Live video streaming software services are being leveraged by each and every company to connect with their respective target audiences and subsequently boost engagement. As an intrinsic part of their cultural ethos, organizations have started sharing live events. Stories can be created and important announcements can be made.
One of the important 7Ps of the marketing mix is People. Live video streaming software helps you establish a nexus between people and product. It not only keeps the audiences engaged but also converts them into avid learners. Thanks to several tangible and intangible benefits that a live video streaming software offers, organizations are keenly looking forward to a completely integrated video solution.
A completely integrated video solution contains features such as:
- Tracking and Analytics
- Hardware and Software
- Dedicated Support
- Production Solutions
To develop a fully functional integrated video solution, one requires expertise in web programming stack such as LARAVEL, MEAN (Mongo DB, Express JS, Angular JS, Node JS) etc. Expertise in server programming is mandatory. A few years ago, organizations used to hire web development teams and shell out a good deal of money to get their video streaming software designed. Today, the scenario is different in its entirety. There are various live video streaming solutions available. Organizations can choose any one particular video solution from the enlisted top 10:
Livestream is a video streaming service solution founded in 2007 with a mission to enable organizations to share experiences through live video, unlock the world where every event is available live online. From being a channel based software solution to an event based streaming solution, Livestream has come a long way. As far as the Broadcaster setup is concerned, Livestream has done an amazing job. Livestream services are available on App store, Google play and ROKU TV set-top box. As far as the subscription plan is concerned, there are two plans available: Basic and Premium. The basic plan starts at $42 per month while the premium plan is priced at $249 per month. You may visit Livestream here.
In January 2016, Ustream was acquired by IBM. This live video streaming software claims to be powering more than 2 million broadcasts every month. Ustream is integrated with analytics software. It allows you to track audiences and gain valuable insights into their viewing habits. Apart from providing customer insights and best-in-class support, Ustream allows you to craft great video campaigns, capture as many leads as possible and export to CRM (Customer Relationship Management) module. Mobile support, social sharing, live broadcasts and VOD (Video on Demand) services are also available. PRO plans range from $99 to $999. If you are an enterprise, you should contact the ustream staff for pricing. You may visit Ustream here.
This live video streaming solution broadcasts user-generated gaming video content. As a user, you can follow channels that you enjoy watching. Users get instant notifications when the channels go live. There is a feature in which users can chat with fellow viewers, send and receive direct messages. Of course, you are also entitled to start your own broadcast. Viewers need not register to watch the broadcasts. However, to start your own broadcast, you should register as a member. To know more about the plans and pricing slabs, visit Twitch.
Bambuser is a leading mobile video streaming solution for organizations and app developers. It is integrated with various features such as online storage, geo-location, and tagging etc. This streaming platform allows users to live stream videos not only from smartphones but also from computer webcams and DV cameras. It goes without saying that this service is completely social media friendly. It is perfectly possible to stream live mobile videos on Facebook, Twitter, and WordPress. You may visit Bambuser here.
Skype has always been the hot favorite of businesses. Skype is known to facilitate team collaboration, instant messaging, file sharing, team conferences etc. In 2014, the developers of Skype launched Skype QIK, a robust mobile video messaging app to help people share moments with their peers. Skype QIK has all the provisions for video embedding and social sharing.
This live social TV platform enables users to broadcast videos through mobile phones and webcams. There is also a video-chat feature that helps you connect live with talented broadcasters. It is available as an Android app on Google Play. You may visit YouNow here.
Freedocast allows you to capture all wonderful things in life, share the captured beautiful moments with friends and family members. It is available as an easy to use app on Android and iOS devices. It has quite a great reputation in UK and European markets. Apart from broadcasting videos, you can add effects to videos and chat with fellow users. Freedocast is integrated with flash video encoder which provides state-of-the-art quality streaming. You may visit Freedocast here.
Move Networks provides a complete solution package built using adaptive streaming technology. This package contains DRM- Digital Rights Management software, subscription packaging, middleware, billing and other modules. Apart from facilitating revenue generation through subscription based services, revenue through enhanced advertising solutions is also provisioned. Move Networks promises quality viewing experience. There shall be a little delay and wait timing is close to zilch. You may visit Move Networks here.
TiVo stands for Television in Video Out. It is a unified entertainment Digital Video Recorder (DVR) that lets you watch all your favorite stuff from Amazon Prime, Netflix, etc. Watching commercials can be frustrating at times. Thanks to the built-in SkipMode, you can skip all the commercials and resume your show sans any interruption. This way, you can save a lot of time. Undoubtedly, TiVo works with any fancy and every non-fancy TV. It works with 4K TVs as well. You may visit TiVo here.
Vaughn Live is a controversial social broadcasting site which aims to foster an interactive social environment. You are liberty to choose any niche- News & Technology, Nature, Miscellaneous, Lifestyles, Creative, etc. Apart from the featured content, this site allows users to telecast their own videos. However, this social broadcasting site is not monitored. As a result, teens under 18 should be granted supervised access only. This social broadcasting site was recently in news for its racist content. Most of the viewers opine that this channel encourages antisemitism.
You may visit Vaughn Live here.
If you are eager to start your own live video streaming service, you should definitely try Streamhash. This turnkey video sharing script lets you build your own Netflix clone and YouTube clone website. It comes with three incredible themes. To know more about its features, please click here.
If you have any concerns, feel free to drop a line or two in the comments section. I shall reply in a day or two. My best wishes are with you and your live video streaming venture. Cheers!
Video streaming applications have become permanent fixtures in a rapidly growing number of devices across the world. What started off as an add-on service to DVD and digital download packages has now flourished into a multimillion dollar industry and a favourite pastime amongst millennials, courtesy lightning-fast internet connections and a burgeoning number of mobile devices world over.
The success of video streaming services all boils down to differentiation and first-mover advantage. Presenting to you, the top video streaming sites of 2017.
You’re probably no stranger to Netflix. Netflix is one of the best video streaming sites, emblazoned on the face of the video streaming industry. With a generously stocked library that is continually pumped with new content, its offerings are novel. Plus, Netflix has always stayed ahead of the game by introducing original programmes such as House of Cards and Luke Cage.
So, what is the hype around Netflix?
Well, other than the massive selection of titles that it features, Netflix allows varying degrees of concurrent streaming through differentiated packages. Its $7.99/month plan, for instance covers one Standard-Definition (SD) stream. Move to High-Definition (HD), and the pricing changes. For simultaneous usage on two different devices on the same account, Netflix offers a package of $9.99 for new members. Talk about 4 concurrent streams from the same account, and the price moves up a notch to $11.99. Whichever way you look at it, Netflix offers value for money! Netflix now also allows offline viewing, and offers more fluidity across devices than any other service provider in the market. So, if you have a flight to catch, or a car journey with sketchy signal, download content beforehand and enjoy it on the go!
Through Netflix’s localised content strategy, it has also clinched partnerships in new world markets to deliver regional content. In India, for example, it has inked deals with telecom operators such as Airtel, Vodafone and Videocon to deliver content Over the Top (OTT).
Of course, as newer technologies take root across the world, video streaming is becoming more fluid than ever before. Streamhash, a turnkey technology that underpins many successful video streaming startups today, provides a seamless device-agnostic user experience that can be customised to embrace a suite of devices.
Netflix has pioneered a revenue model that has inspired many businesses to follow suit. Here are some reasons it stands out:
- Subscription Fee: Netflix’s move to bring in a subscription fee was considered risky, because it had never been attempted before. Yet, the standard price offering clicked, and many Video on Demand (VOD) services have adopted the same model.
- DVD Rentals: Surprised? Don’t be. Few people even know that Netflix offers DVD rentals as a service. Most of us associate Netflix with pure video streaming. DVD rentals contribute a measly percentage to the overall Netflix revenue, though the service was popular when it was launched. However, with technology evolution and internet ubiquity, Netflix’s video streaming service has become a massive engine of growth.
Netflix’s approach to marketing has been heavily focused on consumer insights:
- Personalised Dashboard: What you see on your Netflix home screen is probably very different from what your neighbour sees. Netflix’s brilliant algorithms customise recommendations by curating movies and shows that you’re likely to enjoy based on your past preferences. It is an excellent way to micro-target customers and build user engagement.
- Brand Identity: Netflix has spread like wildfire thanks to social media. Its digital presence and subtle campaigns have worked magic for the brand, especially its youthful tagline, #NetflixAndChill. It hasn’t spent much on Above the Line media, like traditional advertising.
- Listen to Users: We already know about Netflix’s sophisticated data mining approach. But the company uses data trends to assess user behaviour and tweak its offerings. A market insight uncovered by Netflix revealed that users enjoyed binge-watching shows at one go, and that the experience proved more enjoyable this way. Thus, Netflix started releasing all the episodes of a given season at once, to boost user contentment.
Amazon Video is always attempting to one-up Netflix through pricing or promotion. On the pricing front, its $10.99/month includes a suite of benefits, like Prime’s free shipping, Amazon Photos and the Kindle Lending Library.
Amazon Video offers an annual package at $99. Its streaming service contains about 40,000 titles, but very few of those qualify for Prime Streaming. The ones that don’t, need to be bought, regardless of Prime membership. Like Netflix, Amazon Video also offers provides offline downloads. The only real challenge with the service is that it isn’t as device-agnostic as Netflix, and doesn’t work on Google’s Chromecast. The service also offers concurrent viewing from two streams.
- Annual Subscription Fee: Ditto, Netflix. This plan offers users the option to pay upfront for a full year, with a built-in pricing benefit.
- Standalone Monthly Subscription: Here, a user may can subscribe to Prime whenever, wherever. There’s no long-term obligation.
- Streaming Partner Program: Where Amazon Video really stands apart, is with its Streaming Partners Program. With this OTT streaming subscription programme, Amazon has collaborated with twenty broadcast companies, such as Showtime, Starz and CBS. The service allows you to add specific networks to your account at a discounted price.
- Bundling: Amazon’s competencies are diverse, and the company has leveraged its array of skill sets in its promotional bundles. By packaging its Kindle line, streaming and express shipping service together, it has created a value proposition that no other pure VOD player can match!
Hulu is still coming into its own. What used to be a free, ad-speckled viewing experience has taken on a Netflix-like twist. And it all lies in its monetisation plan.
Unlike its more popular counterparts, Hulu manages to procure content aired on television within days of it being televised. Netflix and Amazon, on the other hand, take months to broadcast the same content. Its partnership with big studios is its ticket to quick content.
- Monthly Subscription Fee: Hulu is priced at $7.99/month. Interestingly, Hulu is ahead of Netflix and Amazon in procuring television content.
- Advertising Spots: Hulu still takes on advertisers, despite its monthly fee model. This means that viewers still see ads. The company also offers a $11.99 variant, that comes with an ad-free experience.
- Advertising Spots: Hulu is one of the only VOD players to continue with advertising spots in a world where netizens tend to skip advertisements. Still, Hulu is looking to capitalise on these spots to draw advertisers and enhance the ad viewing experience of users.
- Original Content: Netflix and Amazon have already cornered this opportunity, and now it’s Hulu’s turn. By introducing superior content onto its platform, it will create a differentiator for itself.
HBO is the first media company to branch out onto the internet. Although it started its online expedition with HBO Go, the media house found that it didn’t work as well, because users needed a pay TV login to access it.
As the name suggests, HBO Now streams content owned by HBO. There aren’t any stream limitations so multiple streams can be opened on devices with the same username.
HBO Now sells for $14.99/month. Because HBO owns the content, shows and movies debut online within minutes of being broadcasted on television. HBO Now can be accessed from any device, through Amazon, Google Play and the App Store.
- Well-Timed Programming: HBO’s launches have been well thought-out. For instance, it timed its tremendously popular show, Game of Thrones, with the launch of HBO Now.
- Tailored Content: There isn’t a significant difference in cost between HBO as a cable addition and HBO Now. However, by offering customers a unique, made-to-order viewing experience, HBO is combining its traditional and online properties to envelope a customer in the brand’s prowess.
CBS All Access
Meet another television entrant on the online bandwagon!
Like HBO, CBS has also developed an exclusive digital platform. And while you may find it odd that a platform could possibly broadcast shows from a single channel, CBS has cracked the code. By offering its stellar line up of shows the day after their telecast, CBS has viewers tuned in to stay up to date with missed shows and new content.
It isn’t difficult to start an online streaming platform anymore. Many media companies purchase ready technologies like Streamhash to complement their traditional offerings. And with the plethora of handy customisation options and fantastic features that such technologies provide, you save a whole lot of time and money.
- Monthly Subscription Fee: CBS All Access is available for $5.99/month.
- Advertising Spots: CBS follows a differential advertising approach. It broadcasts ads for primetime, day-time and late night content, but television classics are run uninterrupted.
- Television Advertising: CBS’s first phase of marketing involved advertising on its own television network, followed by spots on select outside networks. Thoughts like Watch live. Watch later and Binge away were pushed to consumers.
- Digital Advertising: After traditional media, CBS resorted to a focused advertising approach through digital devices. The advertising featured specific shows or behaviours that would appeal to customers.
- Influencer Approach: CBS launched an influencer-based approach, aimed at generating referrals through fan websites and word of mouth. It also hinted at rewarding these fans with a referral bonus or a free trial of All-Access.
The top 5 video streaming sites in the world are ideal models to follow on your own entrepreneurial path. Curate content for a unique geography as an acid test, and then expand your platform to cover more content. Take a leaf out of each of these company’s marketing books to forge your own journey!
Entertainment today takes a variety of forms, with many of them residing on the internet. Whether it is insta-recipe snippets, music videos or laugh-a-minute shows, the online video landscape has quickly become a veritable Eden for entertainment seekers. And that means only one thing: there’s more money on the internet than ever before.
Today, we lift the lid on one of the most effective ways to leverage internet traffic; one that has caught the fancy of many savvy entrepreneurs. Say hello to video streaming, a technology that allows users to broadcast content, captured on a camera, through a device connected to the internet. The viewer receives this content, on another device, either in real-time or later. Streaming is a fun, engaging experience being adopted by an array of brands, to grow a personal relationship with each consumer. Live streaming, in particular, is catching on quickly. Look at Facebook Live, Instagram Live, Twitter’s Periscope for inspiration, if you’re wondering how it works.
There are endless possibilities in every sector, when it comes to setting up a video streaming business model. If you have a background in finance, video streaming could help you open a window between you and your customers with live chats, real-time financial advice and quicker turn-around times. If you have a passion for cooking, you could turn your kitchen into a makeshift studio, streaming stylised recipes through improvised techniques. And you do not even need a hefty bank balance to get started. Turn to a turnkey technology called Streamhash, a platform that lets you maintain your own streaming site, thereby lending you a singular online identity. Streamhash allows you to set up the technology within 2 days, and your launch costs will be 100 times less than if you were to develop and launch a technology from scratch.
If you have an exceptional idea and have been wanting to tread the entrepreneurial path, there has never been a better time than now to monetise your brand. Here are some ways to make money from home. Get ready to be inspired.
You’re probably already well-acquainted with the advertisements that slide in and out while you’re watching a video on YouTube. And while these ads may seem unwelcome to a viewer, they sweep in the most money for broadcasters. The fee is usually determined by the length of the video, and advertisers will pay you per click. Here’s where volumes play a big role. If you have a sizeable following, you can easily rake in about $1,000 monthly, from ads alone. This also means that you can maintain free viewership and draw a larger following.
But there’s more to online ads than meets the eye. In recent times, ads on the internet have been largely segregated into two: native ads and traditional ads. You’re already familiar with the latter concept; the kind of ad that appears intermittently during a YouTube video, pushing a product or service. A native ad, on the other hand is modelled after tremendous research, and employs powerful storytelling coupled with a journalistic narrative. These ads are educative and entertaining, and often, the audience may not even know that the content is sponsored. That’s the beauty of native ads; they mimic quality content that sits on your platform, and your user is likely to follow it right through to the end.
In January, this year, Samsung launched a digital campaign in India called #SamsungService. The campaign sparked curiosity and inspired a personal connect amongst viewers, because of a touching, four-minute film that the company launched on YouTube and across 50 channels as a condensed ad. Amazingly, the film garnered 18 million views in its first six days. Not only did Samsung profit from a farther reach, but YouTube prospered from astronomical ad revenues.
When you do decide to take the ad route, consider featuring a healthy mix of native ads and traditional ads. If your native ad content leaves a mark on viewers, you’ve struck gold.
Donations are wonderful, and will work once you have reached out to your followers and have made an impact. Consider integrating a donation feature on your site, almost like a virtual tip jar, that viewers can fill at will. If you are thinking of starting your own video-sharing website on the lines of YouTube, there are several ideas you can use for donations. For example, South Korea’s Afreeca.tv has an inbuilt feature where viewers can pay for star balloons as they follow a broadcaster, which that broadcaster can then swap for real money. On Afreeca, 1 star balloon equates to about 10 US cents. Now that’s not a lot, you may think. But it is, when volumes add up.
Afreeca feeds on South Korea’s quirky culture of broadcasting every aspect of life, whether it is dining in front of a screen for your viewers, or simply donning makeup and appeasing a fan following. Afreeca is built on a virtual gift economy, with a free flow of gifts between viewers and broadcasters. With 25 million users and 7,500 channels, it’s a winning product. One streamer, Yoo So Hee set a record by making US $37,000 in one night, back in October 2014. She did it by prettifying herself and then interacting with her followers on Afreeca. But hey, where’s the money for Afreeca? Well, Afreeca gets a share of every star balloon that is bought, and the more money a broadcaster makes, the more Afreeca makes. It’s a win-win situation.
YouNow, a webcast service headquartered in New York operates on a similar model. With a user base predominantly under 24 years old, the site is used as an interactive platform for dance and music, amongst other activities. Sometimes, users simply stream themselves sleeping, or other routine activities that make up their day. In March 2015, a Brooklyn cashier named Tayser Abuhamdeh, made headlines after he began streaming snippets of his daily life to his audience. His following grew rapidly, but so did his phone bill. And soon, his virtual lifestyle became unaffordable. When he wrote in to YouNow, they put him on their partner programme, which would allow viewers to leave virtual gifts and tips.
YouNow’s partner programme is unique. Through it, viewers can earn coins by just interacting on the platform. In turn, these coins can buy digital gifts like hearts, sticks, beers and fist bumps. When these gifts are given to broadcasters, YouNow gets a cut in its value. The platform has also opened a premium gifting service for the partner programme, which allows viewers to buy gifts using money f, in the hope of eliciting a personal mention, or a declaration of gratitude. The premium service hives off a portion of a broadcaster’s earnings as profit. It’s a bright business model that can be applied to any trend really; cooking, gardening, cycling. You name it.
Sponsorships come with the territory if you’re a successful streamer. But how do you make money as a site owner? Sometimes, brands may approach a streamer directly, reaching a mutual financial agreement. If you’re a site owner, though, you can approach brands with the promise that you’ll have your top 10 users endorse their product during a fixed number of streaming sessions. This saves the brand money and time, and it leaves you as the middleman. This of course, means that you can liaise the deal with a fee in between. A revenue share agreement would make most sense in such a case, where the advertiser would pay a fixed sum per click, which you would then share with the broadcaster in a pre-decided ratio.
Exclusive Video Previews:
You don’t have to limit your site to the users that you have. Reach out to brick-and-mortar businesses and feature previews of their offerings on your site. Let’s say there’s an upcoming gym in your city. Have them shoot a video of an engaging exercise sequence and display it on your site. Or if there’s an exciting new restaurant in town, stitch together a behind-the-scenes teaser. While this doesn’t have to be your main business, it’s a great source of extra income.
Premium Chat Windows:
YouTube recently announced that it is going to launch Super Chat, a fantastic new chat window feature that monetises creators. Through Super Chat, viewers of a live stream will pay for chat messages that will be highlighted in bright colours and pinned to the top of a chat window, to catch the creator’s attention. It’s a monetisation tool for broadcasters, and excites viewers who receive virtual recognition. YouTube, of course makes a commission on each chat message bought. Think of how a premium chat service could fit in to your video streaming business model!
If you’re inspired, reach out to Streamhash to get your website started and make money from video streaming. Growing your bank balance has never been easier.