Scaling up digital distribution with a cloud-first approach

July 12, 2022 by Rick Young, SVP, Global Products

Scale is one of the words that come up most often in my conversations with customers nowadays. It’s a top priority for almost all major media companies. However, many of them are scratching their heads, thinking of ways to efficiently deliver content at scale in a complex and fast-changing digital landscape. Organizations ask themselves how to get their best content to viewers across numerous digital platforms without heavy and costly infrastructure investments. In other words: ‘How can we do more with less?’

Fortunately, we’ve been thinking about this question for some time now, and we’ve aligned our technology roadmap to tackle this challenge head-on, cloud-first with the launch of LTN Lift. Lift is LTN’s award-winning fully managed, cloud-based playout solution that enables media customers, particularly news-producing broadcast stations and sports networks, to spin up new channels automatically and extend their reach across digital platforms, capturing new eyeballs and fueling revenue generation.

Keeping up with the pace

Audiences on traditional linear platforms are in decline. MoffetNathanson revealed that cable viewership dropped 18% this year as consumers migrated toward OTT platforms and AVOD/SVOD viewing. In parallel, media companies contend with squeezed ad revenues and surging costs of content. Right now, business leaders need to maximize the yield from their content assets and drive cost efficiencies to have any chance of surviving and thriving in a fiercely competitive market.

Designing and implementing a robust digital distribution strategy is enough to keep business leaders up at night — navigating a proliferation of platforms, connected TV services, and distribution channels is a complex task. New platforms emerge as quickly as they might disappear, and existing services evolve and change shape in a flash. Media executives don’t want to worry about the technical requirements of bringing content from A to B, C, and D. They want to focus on creating outstanding sports, news, and entertainment content with the peace of mind that they can deliver that content to viewers wherever, whenever, and without a hitch.

Today, great content needs to be customized to deepen platform loyalty and drive viewer engagement. As digital platforms replace traditional cable services as the de facto viewing method for many consumers, broadcast organizations are looking to connect with OTT audiences at a local level with targeted, tailored content. Local news, sports and other region-specific programming act as key service differentiators and an enabler for subscriber retention for broadcasters launching streaming channels. Delivering localized content through customized channels for different audiences without breaking the bank is a fast-track route to streaming success.

Cloud alignment for efficient scale

Scale represents both a huge challenge and a tremendous opportunity. Achieving scale in the digital era is complex, and for many media organizations, requires both a business and technology shift. Pivoting from CapEx-focused models to OpEx-favored approaches with a cloud-defined technology strategy helps companies increase scalability and business agility, allowing them to spin up services rapidly based on evolving requirements.

Furthermore, the impact of the past two years accelerated the adoption of remote workflows as teams embraced distributed cloud-based solutions. As much an operational shift as a mindset shift, organizations have continued along a path to the cloud. They now need solutions accessible from anywhere to align with operational and commercial requirements.

Lifting customers to pole position

We listen to our customers and design curated workflows and solutions to fit their multi-platform needs today and in the future. LTN Lift is our latest offering to help our partners efficiently expand their digital reach, bringing together a range of next-generation video technologies across the LTN Ecosystem.

Using LTN Lift, you can take a primary linear channel and create multiple derivative versions with altered programming to fit cross-platform programming requirements or provide tailored, localized content for different audience groups. Automatically distributing fresh, local, and engaging content across OTT platforms and FAST services round the clock while integrating live and non-live content assets has never been easier. In fact, it’s never been possible. And to ensure optimized reach equals optimum monetization, built-in signaling and ad enablement capabilities mean customers can drive ad value with advanced advertising capabilities on any platform.

A tried and tested award winner

Today, LTN Lift is helping our broadcast group customers unlock new revenue streams and reach new audiences at the touch of a button. Our customers have already harnessed LTN Lift to bring a range of local streaming channels to diverse audiences across the country, 24/7. For instance, using Lift, a major media company’s owned station group connects local audiences with specialized news and weather coverage and other geographically tailored programming. Lift is about empowering digital storytelling on a local level — but at a tremendous scale.

Services like LTN Lift are underpinned by our customer-centric approach, always-on support, and dedicated team of engineers and broadcast professionals. LTN Lift isn’t just a technology platform that puts your organization in first place in the race for digital eyeballs. It’s a proven, award-winning, problem-solver and revenue generator for streaming at scale, with confidence.