A message from Gary Bettan, President of Videoguys.com
"In 2020 we made Live Streaming work –
In 2021 we make it look better, work better and easier to produce!”
I get asked all the time what I think the future of live streaming is. Was it a COVID spike or is it a sustainable new business model? My answer is the quote above, and it doesn’t just apply to live streaming, it goes for remote production, virtual collaboration and all of the video based tools we all had to adapt to during the global pandemic and shutdown.
A little background here. My company has sold video technology for decades. About 5 years ago we started the pivot from postproduction tools to live streaming products and workflows. From 2015 to 2019 my company was seeing steady growth, in 2020 things exploded. Demand for our products went through the roof. Over the summer we could not get enough products to feed demand, despite seeing our sales more than double from the summer before. The Federal governments CARES act pumped billions into technology spending for Schools, local governments and companies realizing they had to keep the doors open while not being able to have people gather together. We had product shortages and delays and supply chain issues into the Fall. I’m convinced we could have tripled our business if we could have acquired the products.
In Q4 when supply finally caught up, we were anticipating a slowdown in demand. While sales fell from the insane Q3 numbers, we were still running at more than 75% above Q4 of 2019. In Q1 of 2021 we were not sure if things would drop or level off. When I saw that our sales had in fact leveled off from Q4, but were still running 75% ahead of Q1 2020, I knew my hypothesis was correct. Live streaming technology is here to stay.
In a nutshell in 2020 we had to use live streaming to make social distancing work. Without it we could not have gotten through the impact to our economy, our schools, and our lives. Here are just a few examples:
- Schools, colleges, universities, teachers, professors, and students have had to adapt to remote instruction, collaboration, and learning
- Houses of Worship are streaming their services, lectures, and classes. This allows them to reach more people and makes it easier for people to be a part of the church. A win-win situation!
- Government agencies, offices and politicians are using streaming to update their constituents not just about COVID, but anything and everything else going on in their communities.
- Corporations have had to adapt to using live streaming instead of in person selling, training and collaboration.
- Businesses of every size have had to turn to live streaming to reach their customers, build their brand and market their products to deal with the global shutdown and restrictions limiting their operations.
So why am I saying that his will continue in 2021, after we all get vaccinated, and we can move and gather freely? Because what we learned is that while our first choice in being there, we do not have to miss things when we can’t be there. Being able to watch and participate via live streaming will keep us connected and allow us to share our experience and knowledge and expertise even when we cannot meet in person.
- For educators there is no substitute for in person schooling and the connections it can build, but live streaming and remote teaching will allow those in underserved areas to have equal access to the best lessons. By delivering remote classes higher education can become much more affordable and even more people can have access to it.
- If a church can reach more people by streaming their services, why would they ever stop? Many churches have also learned how to encourage donations from those watching the live streams, increasing their revenues.
- Live Streaming makes local governments more transparent and gives the community a better understanding of not just what is happening in their local government, but how it is happening. This will only increase community engagement.
- We will still have sales conferences and training, but why should we have to miss it if we cannot attend? Why should we be forced to reschedule because a few people cannot make a meeting but everyone else can?
- Businesses will be able to save a fortune on travel, lodging, meals, and entertainment. It will not all go away, but you will not have to send as many people or travel nearly as much when you integrate live streaming into your sales, training, and management programs.
- Businesses of every size from major corporations to local shops are realizing that live streaming is one of the most cost-effective ways to build your brand, engage your customers, drive demand and increase customer loyalty. Why? Because live streaming comes across as so much more authentic.
I am confident we will see strong sales in our live streaming products such as:
- Video cameras, especially robotic PTZ Cameras
- Webcams & Document cameras
- Encoders & Converters
- Mixers / Switchers
- Streaming & Video conferencing software
- Integrated solutions
- Wireless Mics, Tripods and lighting
Why? Because everyone who figured out how to stream in 2020 is going to want to do it better in 2021. If you are a church using a PTZ camera, you are now looking at adding more. If you were a teacher using your Chromebook, you are figuring out how to incorporate another webcam to document camera or PTZ camera into your lessons. If you were streaming with one camera in 2020, you are looking to add more cameras, and graphics and production quality in 2021. And for every business that is not streaming yet, you are going to have to jump on the bandwagon or lose market share to your competition. LIVE STREAMING IS HERE TO STAY!
If you are a house of worship, school, university, government agency, corporate video department or a small business looking to get started in or expand your live streaming capabilities call Videoguys 800-323-2325 or visit our website www.videoguys.com
We have knowledgeable sales reps who use our products every week to produce our own shows. We are here and we can help you find the right gear to meet your needs, budget and utilize your existing video gear. No matter what level of live streaming and video production you are looking for, Videoguys has the products and knowledge to help you produce the best possible live streams to connect you to your audience and customers.