LTN – The challenges and opportunities of scale in today’s media industry

LTN – The challenges and opportunities of scale in today’s media industry


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LTN – The challenges and opportunities of scale in today’s media industry

Journal Article from LTN

Mon 19, 09 2022

Rick Young, SVP, Head of Global Products

SVP, Head of Global Products

Today’s broadcasting landscape is highly dynamic and characterized by non-stop technology innovation, increased competition across different platforms, and rapidly evolving consumer demands. Scale is one of the most pressing issues influencing these factors. New viewing platforms are emerging quicker than ever, and broadcasters need flexible, scalable distribution solutions to keep up with this rapid pace of change.  It’s a top priority for almost all major media companies, yet delivering it efficiently and getting the best content to viewers across numerous digital platforms without heavy and costly infrastructure is a big challenge in the current environment.

An effective combination of strong (not high) investment and robust technology solutions can give media companies precisely what they need. With this in mind, media companies across the whole chain need to make the proper steps to thrive in this unpredictable environment. The decisions they make today will significantly impact how they will perform in the constantly evolving future. Making the right ones will empower them to take advantage of new opportunities.

Maximising the yield from content

One of the major challenges for the industry is making the most of the content assets available. Faced with squeezed ad revenues and the rising cost of content, broadcasters need to maximize the yield from their live and non-live content assets and drive cost savings, while finding new audiences, wherever possible – without compromising service quality and reliability.

Audiences on traditional linear platforms are in decline. Consumers have now migrated toward OTT platforms - both ad supported and subscription based, ensuring that a robust digital distribution strategy can be the key to creating outstanding content that maximizes that yield.

One way to do this is by ensuring that media companies put customization at the heart of their strategy. Today, great content needs to be targeted to deepen platform loyalty and drive viewer engagement. As we continuously see, digital platforms replace traditional cable services as the primary viewing source for many consumers. Connecting with these audiences at a local level with tailored content can act as an essential service differentiator. Whether it is local news, sports, platform-specific or region-specific programming, it is a clear path to retain consumers. A versioning and customization strategy is  achievable without breaking the bank and is a critical strategy to get into the streaming world and grow a fragmented audience.

Looking up at the cloud

Achieving scale in the digital era is complex, and it is one of the hallmarks of the cloud. For many media organizations, it requires both a business and technology shift. Pivoting from CapEx-focused models to OpEx-favored approaches with a cloud-defined technology strategy can help companies increase scalability and business agility, allowing them to spin up services rapidly based on evolving requirements. Said another way - media companies need to experiment to find the right product mix to reach audiences wherever they are.

Boasting impressive data storage capacity, processing power, and networking, these can all be scaled through cloud computing infrastructure quickly and easily.  Scalable cloud architecture is made possible through virtualization. Cloud technology solutions, done right, are highly flexible and can be easily scaled up or down. Workloads, workflows and applications can be distributed across a region or the globe as needed. This ability is perfect  for media companies to meet the fluctuating market demands.

Finding the right partner to make this possible

As mentioned, the cost of investment in such technology is high, and with tighter budgets, this is where the right business strategy can save a company hundreds of thousands. This is where partnering with a company like LTN makes the most sense. Tapping into LTN’s wealth of knowledge acquired over years of experience gained from building a one-of-kind global IP transmission network from the ground up and incorporating that into the capabilities and technical solutions while also understanding the business operations and configurations can help media companies navigate today’s landscape.

LTN is one company at the heart of this intersection of media output. Its award-winning platform, LTN Lift, builds on the dynamic capabilities that media companies need and allows them to automate the creation of multiple derivative versions from a primary linear channel, spinning up secondary channels and integrating live and non-live programming.

A solution like Lift allows companies to adjust programming to fit cross-platform programming requirements or provide tailored, localized content for different audiences. Media companies can provide fresh, local, and engaging content across these OTT platforms and FAST services, optimizing audience reach and monetization.

The right partner also has advantages with the cloud. Through a third party, the cloud providers have all the infrastructure already in place. Prior to hosted and cloud-based solutions like Lift and Arc, scaling with on-premises physical infrastructure would take weeks or months and require tremendous expense, often resulting in lost opportunities tied to time to market.

Media companies should also consider a partner that offers a customer-centric approach. In the constantly busy and unpredictable media world, a good partner can provide 24/7 support from a team of experts and professionals to help maintain quality and consistency - avoiding the apparent downsides of going alone. 

Final thoughts

Spinning up new channels automatically and extending audience reach across digital platforms creates opportunities the industry has never seen before. Overcoming the challenges is not easy, but there is no better time for media companies to act and stay ahead of the curve. Scale is not a buzzword and will only evolve as our industry progresses, and it can be achieved more easily than initially thought. In doing so, media companies will not only expand their reach across digital platforms. They will enjoy the benefits that come with it, including capturing new eyeballs and fueling revenue generation. As we embark on this new era of storytelling, there is no better time to embrace it.

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