Friday, 8 February 2013

Broadcasting is changing as we know it.

Broadcast is changing as we know it. Gone are the days where only big broadcasters in television held the means to reach mass markets across the globe. Now anyone can put a video on YouTube and reach people around the world almost instantly. For people who make their living in the television/media/broadcasting industry this is ever an increasing market with endless possibilities. Anyone in the Freelance or Video Production industry can now bypass the traditional broadcasters and reach potentially millions of viewers around the world. This is a big revolution. In my day to day interaction with production companies I am hearing an ever common theme. Many of them are ditching their previous broadcasting routes and focusing more and more on web distribution. With more video podcasts, webisodes and YouTube channels becoming an increasing way to access information and entertainment  people are getting onboard and there is money to be made as well. Take for example YouTube. The top one thousand channels on YouTube generated almost 90 million social interactions on the site. These interactions spread over onto other sites like Twitter and Facebook. Some of the 1,000 highest preforming channels make some good cash as well, with a average monthly payout for the top channels of $23,000 dollars. However this not the case for all channels and only the very top preforming channels reach these numbers, it does however show what is out there in terms of revenue and viewer potential. Some of the top YouTube channels reaches tens of thousands of people every week with millions of subscribers. Look at the success of channels like Ray William Johnson, Shane Dawson, Epic Meal Time and FPSRussia and it becomes clear that reaching millions of viewers all around the world is now a real possibility. Most of these top channels have been around since day one, are regularly updated and also employ many other people to help with their productions but they all started out has humble channels with a great idea. OpenSlate a company which measures the value of video content for advertisers found that YouTube has over a million channels that run paid ads on them reported YouTube writes cheques annually for more than one million people every month. These numbers are staggering and show you just the potential of this new frontier in Broadcasting. Traditional broadcasting routes are becoming outdated. This is opening the flood gates to millions of creative people who up until a few years ago didn't have a medium to get their ideas and content across. No need for pitches, chasing grants or getting broadcasters to sign off on your content when you can potentially reach millions of people through hosts like YouTube, Ustream and Livestream. At the end of the day what it all comes down to is content. Content is still king. If your idea isn't great or you have nothing to say than no matter how much production value you poor into something, viewers just aren't going to watch. However once the idea is in place it is now easier more than ever to get your video scene by people. It's also getting a lot cheaper as well. Putting a video online can be as easy as buying a webcam or as complex as building the a proper studio and everything in between. Many of the top YouTube channels started out as simple webcams and raised their production value as their viewership grew. For a few thousand dollars it is more than possible to build a home video podcasting studio. Something I will explore further in this blog in the coming posts.

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