How to Thrive in the Light Broadcast Market

Published: 2016-12-06

We’re heading quickly toward 2017 and we know many of our readers are evaluating how to make more money in the next 12 months than they did this year. Those who were part of the 2016 Total Tech Summit in Atlanta learned more about what CI editor Tom LeBlanc called “a huge pocket of revenue.”

If you weren’t there, though, don’t worry. The largely untapped area to which LeBlanc was referring in his session was what he dubbed “The Light Broadcast Opportunity.”

“You need to rethink how your firm approaches video,” said LeBlanc, who moderated the session that featured Frankie Escribano of Yorktel, Rob Ziv of Almo Pro A/V, Steve Bacon of BlaCon Media and David Strupp of W.H. Platts, all of whom have thrived in working in the light broadcast arena.

“Integrators only solve part of their customers’ video needs,” said LeBlanc.

“The way people use content has changed. Today, customers across every vertical are candidates for using video. Companies need to help with creation, storage, deployment, management, who’s consuming the video content and what to do with the information. A lot of companies don’t know how to do all of that, even some of the ones with the word ‘Video’ in their names.”

Ziv agreed with LeBlanc’s self-described soapbox presentation, saying, “There’s absolutely a demand and an opportunity.”

Yorktel, CI‘s 2015 Integrator of the Year, earned that distinction in part because of its push to be among the industry leaders in helping customers create, manage and share video content.

CI editor Tom LeBlanc (center) talks about the importance of the light broadcast market at a Total Tech Summit panel discussion.

“Customers are looking for someone to manage that content and keep it up to date,” says Escribano. “They buy a bunch of equipment and don’t know what to do with it. It became our responsibility to help them when we sold them that equipment.

“You have to put a strategy around it. Don’t be afraid to bring in a partner to train your staff. It’s a lot easier for customers who don’t have the time or expertise to pay you than do it themselves,” he said.

Although Bacon certainly would rather see integrators come to him for help, integrators can do it themselves if they want, starting with a producer, cameraman and editor.

“As the equipment comes and goes, it becomes more expensive to stay ahead of the technology curve,” said Bacon.

Leave It to the Experts

BlaCon Media helps integrators who aren’t well-versed in aspects of video content creation and related services by serving as their Wizard of Oz in many ways, although he often joins integrators at pitch meetings as a representative of the company.

“Integrators want to seem seamless when it comes to distributing content,” said Bacon. “A lot of integrators don’t want it in-house but you’re offering a lot of money on the table if you don’t offer a soup-to-nuts solution.”

Strupp partnered with BlaCon because “we didn’t understand the difference between integrating conference rooms and developing creative. We didn’t have any of the people on staff we needed.” W.H. Platts created more than 400 pieces of content for one digital signage deployment, said Strupp, before deciding they needed help the next time around.

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“You never know what project is coming in the door next. We didn’t want to have to turn those down,” said Strupp. “We can’t support the creative process internally, but it’s good to have a partner who can. It didn’t involve any investment at all, just trust.”

Strupp says his partnership with BlaCon adds $150,000 to larger projects, but it’s important to find the right partner.

“You have to find someone who complements your own company ethos,” he said.

BlaCon has solidified its place in the market, recently partnering with AT&T to take on their video content creation responsibilities in addition to serving as the point person for a worldwide jazz festival that’s broadcast from several different continents.

Ziv advised integrators to start with a project a bit smaller if they plan to dip their toes in the water.

“Depending where you are on the spectrum, it’s probably best not to start with a multi-continent live jazz festival,” he said with a laugh.

Escribano acknowledged video content creation and management “isn’t for everybody,” but he expects Yorktel’s offering to double in size in the next couple of years.

Watch the entire session below.

Read Next: The Factors You Can’t Ignore When Offering Content Creation


Posted in: News

Tagged with: Yorktel

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