Monetizing premier live event broadcasting with intelligent IP transport

September 13, 2023 by Justine Gardner, VP, Business Development, EMEA

Live events are among the most demanding types of content to deliver successfully on a global scale. Recent major tournaments like the Women’s World Cup have broken TV viewership records for women’s football in the UK and Spain, while further afield, the 2023 Indian Premier League (IPL) cricket final set a new record for the most concurrent views of any live streamed event. In an increasingly fragmented sports landscape where rights holders and broadcasters need to navigate complex distribution agreements while delivering live content across a wide range of digital platforms, efficient and intelligent video transport mechanisms have never been more important. Meanwhile, inflationary pressures and macro-ecomonic challenges mean that reducing operational costs and driving ROI on costly content is top of the agenda for media business leaders. Many of our customers are looking for new ways to deliver the biggest live events to global audiences with maximum efficiency, and we’ll be talking to a range of rights owners, content providers and sports broadcasters about how they can achieve this with IP-based transmission at IBC2023 in Amsterdam later this week.

The evolution of live event broadcasting

Live event broadcasting has evolved drastically over the past few years. Broadcasters are reducing their on-site production footprint in favor of remote and cloud-based workflows to drive efficiencies, minimize costs and work towards sustainability targets. As audience expectations around viewing quality become more demanding than ever, content providers need highly scalable and reliable video transport infrastructure to deliver a greater tonnage of 4K UHD video. At the same time, media companies need to bring tailored versions of live event content to multiple platforms and geographies to fit diverse language and platform requirements while providing personalized viewing experiences.

Achieving this level of customization at scale and increasing digital distribution while serving traditional linear audiences is incredibly challenging. As media organizations wrestle with the complexities of a global, multi-platform distribution model, many are migrating toward IP-based transmission for a more flexible and cost-efficient approach to live video transport. These organizations have moved far beyond experimentation stages — IP-based transmission technologies are now tried and tested on the biggest stages. Every day, Tier 1 media companies around the world trust IP transport solutions like LTN Wave for the distribution of high-value live content, while harnessing cloud-based live event versioning solutions like LTN Arc to achieve customization at scale for diverse global audiences.

Managed IP transport for reliable foundations

The limitations around fiber-based and satellite media transport are no secret. Fiber lacks the reach, flexibility, and redundancy required to pursue an effective international distribution strategy, while delivering a high number of channel variants and customized feeds via satellite is unfeasible from a cost perspective. It makes sense from both a business and technology standpoint to embrace a managed, multicast-enabled IP network for high value live event broadcasting, unlocking greater scalability, reliability, and content versioning capabilities.

While rights holders and media companies around the world are recognizing the benefits of IP transport for live event broadcasting, it’s important not to underestimate the complexities of internet-based delivery. The internet wasn’t originally designed for transporting valuable live video content at scale. Protocol-only IP solutions that rely on standard internet routing architecture can suffer from issues around delay and reliability — both of which are table stakes for live event broadcasting. With intelligent routing protocols and proprietary infrastructure, LTN’s fully managed IP network overcomes the challenges of internet transport, delivering high reliability and low latency worldwide. Major broadcasters trust us to bring their premier live events from anywhere to everywhere — and we make sure they get a good night’s sleep knowing their content is in safe hands.

Business intelligence maximizes your ROI

Rights holders and streaming companies need to bring more versions of content to more platforms than ever before, and they need to experiment with growing business models such as free ad-supported streaming TV (FAST) and direct-to-consumer (D2C) to diversify their offering and capture new audiences. Business model experimentation requires flexible technology foundations. Seamless and flexible integration with LTN’s full chain video workflows from production through to cloud playout enables media companies to scale and tailor their distribution strategies quickly and easily without breaking the bank. While automated ad signaling and metadata triggers enable maximum downstream monetization and personalization, LTN’s intelligent IP-based transmission solutions provide next-generation levels of visibility and monitoring to give customers greater insight and control over their live event content.

As the commercial and technical intricacies of premier live event broadcasting become more complex than ever, adopting an IP-first approach to high value video transport is the best way to maximize profitability while seamlessly monetizing content across any platform or region. For broadcasters and streaming companies looking to drive ROI and future proof their distribution roadmap, partnering with a trusted and forward-thinking provider like LTN is the smartest place to get started.

Launching a transition to IP-based video transport is quicker and easier than you might think — head to this blog by LTN’s SVP, Head of Global Products, Rick Young, to explore four simple steps to transforming your media distribution strategy.