Live streaming is set to be a whopping $1.49 billion market by the end of 2023. But this is hardly a surprise. 2020 was an inflection point for live streaming video as it kicked off a fabulous growth rate. This trend is set to continue, with the market estimated to quadruple over the period 2021- 2028 from a revenue of $988m to $4290m at a CAGR of 23%. There’s no stopping live streaming !99%. This trend is set to continue, with the market estimated to quadruple between 2021 and 2028 from $988m to $4290m. There’s no stopping live streaming!
Content owners, especially those in the sports and events niche, are latching on to this live streaming gold rush.
Live streaming OTT monetization offers multiple avenues for sports content owners and to make the most of alternative revenue streams that add value to bsuiness bottom lines. Live streaming also offers sports leagues and content owners the opportunity to improve fan engagement. Take the example of LIV Golf Plus, a golf live streaming platform launched recently that’s taking the world by the storm! DTC service and ViewLift customer LIV Golf launched its new app and global live streaming service in a record three weeks, enabling fans to enjoy the 2023 LIV Golf League both live and on demand. Almost immediately after LIV Golf Plus went live, it achieved the top sports app position globally on Google Play Store and Apple App Store in the opening weekend. With 10,000 downloads under its belt in the very first week, the live stream service reached 380 million homes around the world. All of this, with an excellent viewer experience, as the live stream could handle millions of concurrent users seamlessly. The app comes highly rated among users on app stores and industry stalwarts.
Inspired? Let’s help you start a streaming service or quickly create a live streaming app. Here’s how you can get your live streaming platform up and running in minutes and monetize your content like a rockstar!
How to create a live streaming app in 7 steps
1. Find your niche
The first and most crucial step is to decide where you want to be. Is it sports, is it events, or is it music? Political rallies and even religious events have significant audiences. These are profitable niches with a vast audience and revenue growth potential.
Do your market surveys to identify potential genres, research players servicing such genres in your target geographies so you know what you’re up against, and finalize your niche. Understand your target audience, demographics, interests, and behaviors. Next, define the size of your target audience to evaluate revenue potential. Work backwards from there.
2. Decide your monetization strategy
Like any other business, your live streaming platform needs to be profitable for it to sustain. The good news is that streaming platforms offer standard and customized features to enable monetization directly to the content owners and in collaboration with other stakeholders like brands or sports leagues when relevant.
A live streaming platform delivers a more immersive and engaging user experience and can be enabled for in-app e-commerce – that’s yet another revenue stream. In addition, apps have the advantage of device-specific features such as push notifications, camera integration for realistic virtual shopping and much more.
3. Set up the tech infrastructure for your live streaming platform
A lot of technology goes on behind the scenes of live streaming. It can be a complicated mess for the creative, not technical, content owner. Some parameters that need to be considered as you start a streaming platform, include:
- Concurrent audience
A large concurrent audience, which means a large audience viewing simultaneously, tests your live stream platform’s reliability. Your tech stack cannot disappoint your audience for even one critical minute during live shows.
- Reliable streaming
The entire live streaming workflow from ingest to delivery needs to be of the highest level. What you’re looking for is the capability to seamlessly stream broadcast quality high-resolution content 24×7 without disruptions.
- Low latency
Your viewers demand buffer-free live streaming. Low-latency streaming protocols like HLS are the gold standard and an absolute must. Moreover, its compatibility with HTML5 video players allows seamless access from practically every internet-enabled device like smart TV, smartphone, tablet, and gaming console.
Look for platforms that deliver the highest standards of privacy, authorization, embedding restrictions, and content security to protect your own, your partners like sports leagues in the sports niche or creators in the event niche as well as
Live streams, just like sporting events and concerts, are best when watched with communities of fellow fans or friends. So include ways for your audience to interact with each other and with your live streaming content via live chats and polls, band or sports team trivia and more.
- Payment gateways
For monetization and ecommerce integration, your live stream platform must support the safest and most popular payment gateways and all major credit/debit cards.
4. Choose a live streaming platform
Disruptions, buffers, complex navigation and UX on a live streaming platform can break your business. So choose your live streaming platform partner carefully. Choose one with the necessary infrastructure – from ingest formats to monetization capabilities. All so you can create a live streaming app in minutes.
Look for total flexibility in ingest formats so you can host user-generated content as well as professional high-resolution live streams. Ensure you can host live streams wherever your audience is – website, mobile app, social media platforms, or a combination of these.
ViewLift Live, with its global CDN network-supported low latency capabilities, HLS protocol, and full stack tech infrastructure, ensures stress-free live streaming, no matter how large your concurrent viewership. In addition, its inbuilt Player SDK enables you to live stream in your web app or elsewhere with no extra effort or investment. You choose the template and content – ViewLift does the rest.
Our customers love what ViewLift does for them. Italian professional basketball league, Lega Nazionale Pallacanestro, popularly known as LNP, used ViewLift’s unified technology stack for its DTC VOD and Live platform, the LNP Pass. With a comprehensive multi-device strategy, LNP Pass streamed a staggering 2000+ live games streamed in the 2021-22 basketball season, raking up its revenue 2x!
5. Build your video library
You do not want your audience to miss the live streaming of a favorite live concert or a crucial game
So build your own archival library and reach out to a significantly larger audience using live-to-VOD archiving for on-demand playback.
ViewLift, with its auto-archiving or live-to-VOD capability, will enable you to build an archival library that allows your audience to view events at their convenience, besides allowing you to create event highlights, promotional videos, and more.
6. Promote your live streaming platform
What’s the point of having brilliant live streaming content partnerships if your audience can’t find you? First, choose a platform that offers integrations with leading digital ad platforms. For example, Meta and & Google integrations help promote your live streaming platform or upcoming events with ease. Also, ensure your live streaming platform can integrate with leading customer engagement tools to scale and hyper-target your marketing efforts with push notifications, in-app messaging, SMS, email, and more. All so your audience keeps coming back for more.
ViewLift comes integrated with both Meta and Google and delivers viewer retention and high usage through integrations with customer engagement tools like CleverTap, MailChimp, and Mandrill.
7. Engage your audience in real time
The live streaming platform audience is passionate about their interests and loves to share experiences, especially when watching their favorite team sports. A robust live streaming platform partner helps them do this with ease.
Offer your audience in-built features that allow them to share stats and trivia, rosters, rankings, and event schedules. All so they don’t miss the community viewing experience on a live streaming event.
It all might seem like a whole lot of work. And to tell you the truth, it is! It’s just that with all our experience building live streaming platforms for some of the world’s most popular leagues and sports content owners, we make all this hard work look easy. For example, with ViewLift, UK-based RugbyPass, catering to the world’s largest independent English-language rugby audience network, launched its SVOD live streaming service in four days. You heard that right! Today, RugbyPass has viewers from over 92 geographies, all of them enjoying lag-free games on devices of their choice and frictionless payment experiences.
Get your pricing right for profitable content monetization on your live streaming platform
Considering cultural nuances, demographic insights, and shifting OTT consumption trends among viewers are all crucial when deciding a monetization strategy.
For example, SVOD has long been the mainstay of streaming services, but recent surveys suggest widespread subscription fatigue due to multiple factors. Viewers are simply not able to keep up with the services they have signed up for and either want out or need a most cost-optimized way to stay entertained.
Diverse monetization models, like AVOD, SVOD, TVOD, PPV, and hybrid monetization, which combines two or more options like PPV+AVOD, are critical to acquiring and retaining all audience segments. This will ensure a diversified revenue model to boost revenue while guarding your profits against fluctuations.
Live streaming platform partners like ViewLift offer these diverse and hybrid monetization models. They also make ad insertion on AVOD and other ad-supported models a breeze with SCTE markers. SCTE markers signal advertisement opportunities in live streams in combination with third-party ad services that insert the actual ads.
Read: Top 22 Live Streaming Platforms: A Guide for Content Owners
OTT revenue mean machine: 5 best ways to monetize your live streaming platform
1. Integrate ecommerce in your live streaming platform
You can generate additional revenue by directly selling branded merchandise like t-shirts, mugs, and other memorabilia to your fans and audience. Do it by choosing a live streaming platform partner who provides ecommerce integration.
Live commerce empowers brands by accelerating conversions through immersive content, taking customers from awareness to purchase quickly.
Limited-time coupons delivered on the live streaming platform generate a sense of urgency and can be an excellent revenue tool.
2. Diversify your monetization models
Different customers have different needs. Therefore, a good OTT monetization model will ensure all crucial customer segments are catered to with tailored pricing, no matter how diverse their price sensitivities.
You can launch services on AVOD despite having a subscriber base on SVOD. This will bring new price-conscious customers onto the platform and open up avenues for future upselling, besides a steady revenue stream from ads.
3. Deliver pre-roll, mid-roll, display, and overlay ads for ad-supported monetization
Pre-roll ads are a great way to monetize your VOD content and are commonly used by AVOD services. As the user has explicitly requested the live stream, the likelihood of them watching the ad is relatively high.
Similarly, mid-roll ads are considered to be effective due to their high completion rates. Your viewers are unlikely to abandon their favorite match simply because of an ad.
Display ads combine text, images, and a URL that links to a website where you can learn more about the product or make a purchase.
Overlay ads during your live stream enable you to promote related or upcoming games or other third-party brand advertisements. They are typically displayed in the lower third of the screen (overlapping the broadcast video) and disappear after a few seconds. Overlay ads are non-interruptive, delivering a top-notch viewing experience.
4. Create new revenue opportunities with brand deals and sponsorships
Brands want to promote their products to potential customers, and your live streaming platform could be just what they need.
Garner brand interest with the ability to serve measurable ads to a sizable captive, engaged audience. Partner with brands that align with your audience preferences. For example, sports gear manufacturers for sports live streams and auto OEMs for auto show live streams.
5. Integrate betting in relevant geographies
Fans have long associated betting with sports. This affinity is shaping the next big opportunity for sports live streaming – live betting. Leading streaming services have already integrated with betting apps in geographies, while others are also considering it due to its engagement potential for sports viewers.
Live streaming platform partners like ViewLift can help you integrate betting apps where legal, adding a new revenue stream to your business.
As you see, your live stream platform’s audience is your real game changer. Deliver quality in your live videos, create professional-grade streams with the right live streaming platform partner, and build a live stream and VOD content strategy that addresses your customers’ preferences. Revenue will follow fast and furious!
Ready to create your live streaming app? It all starts here
Sports aficionados are hungry for their preferred matches, live streamed on devices they love or available on demand even after the match is over.
You can thrive in this fast-growing live streaming market with the support of a partner like ViewLift.
Get started now! Talk to our experts to learn more about ViewLift Live Streaming solutions.