The Three Phases of Growing a Global DTC Sports Streaming Service

Today, sports streaming services should be racing to go direct-to-consumer (DTC). It’s the future. Companies opting not to prioritize a DTC approach remain many laps behind in optimizing their fan experiences.

Rick Allen

A DTC sports streaming service complements linear broadcast deals. Linear partners don’t broadcast every live event. And they can allow the content owner to re-air a game after a hold-back period (typically 24 hours). DTC has solidified itself as the perfect solution to securing the broadest possible distribution across sports streaming markets.

Streaming services, particularly DTC, offer companies a better understanding of fan behavior and needs. While live events drive viewership, shoulder programming on OTT solutions — such as those powered by ViewLift or a service like ESPN+ — extend engagement and create new fans. Much of this comes down to real-time data, which remains a principal value content owners gain from live-streaming.

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At this year’s NAB Streaming Summit, I moderated a panel of industry experts, including Fabio Gallo from LaLiga Tech, Riccardo Quaglia from the Italian Basketball League (LNP) and Andy Wasef from the National Basketball Association (NBA), and discussed the benefits of using data to enhance DTC streaming. We agreed that growing a DTC sports streaming service requires companies to complete three critical phases:

  • Phase 1: Start ramping up live content to build viewership and consumption.
  • Phase 2: After attracting viewers with live content, capture audience data to understand their consumption habits and develop a 360-degree view of the fans.
  • Phase 3: Once streaming services mature, leverage the data to define and understand consumption, churn behavior and marketing behavior on a granular level.

 

Sports streaming services must adhere to these three phases because data ultimately makes or breaks these companies.

Phase one

Live-streaming sports over-the-top has advantages for attracting and retaining customers. These tools help expand fan bases globally.

Collecting the correct data, making it available in real-time and maintaining reliability while scaling, will be invaluable to content companies.

More people globally are consuming live content. In fact, 63% of millennials watch live-streamed content regularly. According to Tech Jury, the live-streaming industry will reach $184.27 billion by 2027. Parks Associates finds that 78% of those who subscribe to an OTT sports service watch live-streamed content, versus 25% who don’t subscribe to an OTT sports service.

Live content provides significant opportunities to collect data over time; the more live games or matches carried by streaming services, the more precise the learnings that can be gleaned from the data. Examined monthly, fan viewership and engagement data sharpen how a service presents content (personalizes) and can help determine what kinds of content and styles of approach will serve the broadest audience.

Phase two

Data has the power to explain everything. Obtaining data is just the first step, however. What streaming services do with that data — how they structure, use and interpret it — is the critical component of phase two.
According to The Future of Sports Broadcasting: Enhancing Digital Fan Engagement report, 25% of sports customers expect a customized OTT viewing experience. Capturing and properly using data enhances personalization and the fan experience. Personalization allows fans to find their favorite teams easily, favorite players and the kinds of content they want. Sports streaming companies typically target customer experiences by:

  • Generating content and marketing recommendations tailored to the audience’s interests based on viewer data.
  • Leveraging data with AI algorithms and frameworks to create advanced customer experience personalization.
  • Using automation to streamline the customer experience through personalized user interfaces.

 

For example, LaLiga’s customer analytics tool collects all the data inside one unique “data lake.” With this data lake, they can profile the data and receive a complete 360-degree view of each fan. The data should translate into creating great content, live games and personalized experiences for the fan.

Phase three

Real-time second-by-second data on viewer consumption becomes crucial in understanding audience behavior. One key piece of data focuses on if — and when — viewers turn the game off. This data informs decisions about what audiences prioritize and what holds their interest. Data on viewer consumption answers questions like:

  • What supporting content do the fans want during live games?
  • What content lengthens viewing sessions?
  • Do fans want more content focused on players, coaches or owners during or between games (feature stories, interviews)?

 

Player performance data attracts audiences as well. Large B2B businesses, like SportRadar and Genius, thrive on the entertainment value and utility of performance data. AWS’s Next Gen Stats — a leader in performance data — provides sports fans with relevant data to interpret what’s happening in the game. The platform also predicts what will happen next based on AI and many data sets. This information is the lubricant for fantasy and free-to play games and what guides many professional (and weekend) gamblers in their sports betting approaches.

Content companies need streaming partners that collect the correct data, make it available in real-time, maintain reliability while scaling and help optimize the mix of monetization models.

Data-driven companies are the future

Sports leagues with a DTC model have evolved into data-driven companies. Linear deals may provide the single largest revenue source for sports leagues and media companies, but that structure inserts the media partner between leagues and their general fan base. Adding a DTC service to the distribution mix mines fans themselves, with personalized content. Providing added value to subscribers remains a focus for many leagues.

While hundreds of streaming subscriptions exist today, those tapping into niche consumers will see more success as they use personalized data to understand, anticipate and satisfy fans’ desires.

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Sports data — particularly viewer behavior — offers an enormous asset for leagues. But diligence throughout the collection and analysis process remains critical. Collecting data begins with selecting the right technology partner.

Streaming services should start with a deep dive into the viewer information collected by their partner’s platform. Ask questions. Is viewer information accessible in real-time? What kind of assistance does the platform provide to our analysts?

It’s time for sports streaming services to treat tech partners as their pit crew with the knowledge and power to drive their OTT service into the winner’s circle.

Rick Allen is the cofounder of ViewLift. He has been in the video and streaming industry for over 30 years. He has led some of the biggest media companies, including stints as CEO of Sporting News; CEO of National Geographic Ventures, with responsibility for 10 business units including TV/Film and Digital; and SVP of Discovery. He also served in the Clinton White House. Allen has authored two best-selling books on Robert Kennedy and produced three award-winning films. 

Q&A: Streaming Media Expert Dan Rayburn on the Future of SVOD and the Rise of AVOD

Dan Rayburn is a veteran streaming media expert who chairs the Streaming Summit at the annual NAB Show. He has produced over 50 in-person conferences for the industry. Rayburn is considered one of the leading authorities, speakers, and writers on streaming media technology, content, and business models. An avid blogger (www.streamingmediablog.com), author and analyst, Rayburn has been quoted more than 2,000 times by the media, with regular TV appearances on CNBC, TD Ameritrade Network, Bloomberg TV and NPR, among others. He has also received invitations to speak as a witness at hearings by both the U.S. Senate and U.S. House of Representatives on topics pertaining to net neutrality, telecom mergers and content delivery architectures. He spent 15 years as a principal analyst at research and consulting firm Frost & Sullivan, where he published market data and analysis on the industry.

Media Play News asked Rayburn to share his thoughts on the streaming business at a time when cracks are beginning to appear, with Netflix losing subscribers and analysts talking about streaming fatigue amid the high cost of multiple subs.

MPN: What do you see happening in the subscription streaming space over the next 12 months? Will there be consolidation? Is any service “bulletproof?”

Rayburn: Consumers have a lot of choice in the market when it comes to video entertainment services, both subscription-based, advertising-based and a hybrid combination of the two. While content variety is a good thing, it also adds complexity, since most consumers can’t sign up for just one or two services to get all the video content they want each month. Nearly all streaming services continue to raise prices each year, due to their ever-expanding content creation and acquisition costs, which are expected to continue to grow. This is driving up pricing and creating a dilemma for consumers who have a limited budget and can’t sign up for every streaming service in the market.

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The biggest change we will see over the next 12 months is Disney and Netflix adding new ad-supported tiers to their offerings, so they can lower subscription prices and “hopefully” make up for the difference in ad revenue. Disney will offer a new option that includes ads with Disney+ and Netflix will also have an option for ads in a new Netflix tier. Both services have always been ad free, but the two companies realize that with so much choice in the market and many consumers having to sign up to four to six different video services, some consumers want the option for a lower monthly price and are willing to sit though ads to be able to pay less. That said, this is not a business that has a one-size-fits-all model, and some consumers will still be willing to pay more each month for a package with no ads.

We’ve already had ad-supported streaming services in the market from Hulu, Peacock TV, HBO Max and others, so this is not new for the industry. But it is for Disney and Netflix. By my estimates, the companies could get $5 to $7 per user, per month, in U.S. advertising revenue soon after the rollout. Outside the U.S., the number would be lower, at $2 to $3 of ad revenue per user, per month. What the user experience will look like with ads, how many minutes of ads will be shown per hour and how the advertising plan will roll out globally is still unknown for both Disney and Netflix. It is expected that both will offer their new ad-supported plans by the end of 2022.

MPN: What can, and should, streaming services do to differentiate themselves and rise above the competition?

Rayburn: All streaming services are focusing on trying to create and license the best content, based on the user(s) they are targeting. From a technical standpoint, they are also working hard to make the services easier to use, be more reliable, and have better content discovery and personalization features — with the goal of keeping users engaged longer on their platforms. They also are working to make the apps load faster, be easier to navigate, include more metadata around the videos and provide better content recommendation options. Streaming services have been working on improving their video streaming technology stack since day one to improve video quality and the user experience, so none of these efforts are new. But they are crucial in helping to make their service stand out among all the others competitive services in the market. Content is important, but so is ease of use, reliability of the service and the ability to navigate and find the content you want.

MPN: If, as they say, content is king, then is the streamer that spends the most on original content going to win, or is there something else?

Rayburn: Content budgets matter, but it’s also what the service is getting in return for the money they are spending. Netflix, Hulu, Amazon, and the others all take chances on producing original content they think will do well. Sometimes, the content doesn’t give them the return they expected and, as a result, they don’t produce more episodes and cancel the series. It’s a difficult business to be in when you have to create a lot of different types of content for many different audiences. There is a lot of risk involved. While having a large content budget helps, since it gives you more volume of content to offer and market to consumers, it’s also the number one reason why services keep raising prices in the market — expanding content budgets. This cost also contributes to the profitability of the service and causes the company to have to work harder to please those on Wall Street. As an example, in Q1 of calendar year 2022, Disney’s D2C business lost $900 million, just in one quarter. The company expects Disney+ to become profitable sometime in fiscal 2024, and there are some who believe it might take even longer than that, if the rate of growth of Disney+ subscribers slows down, as we have seen with Netflix at the start of the year.

MPN: How accurate is audience measurement, given, for one, the abundance of free trial offers and, for another, Amazon mixing in free shipping with Prime Video?

Rayburn: The only companies that truly know what is going on with streaming services, in terms of viewership, popularity of content, engagement etc., are the streaming services themselves. Some companies, like Alphabet with YouTube TV, don’t even disclose high-level numbers of how many subscribers they have. No streaming media service gives out much in the way of data the industry can use to determine what’s really taking place on their platforms. This is why there are a lot of third-party services in the market that are all trying to measure engagement, churn and retention across many streaming services. These third-party firms struggle to provide detailed and accurate data in the market as their methodology, definitions and comparison of services all vary. Some do give a high-level overview of popular content and what’s trending, but none have a good detailed understanding of churn, retention, ad delivery, or how consumers start and stop video services. It’s also important to note that many streaming services define terms like users, paying subscriber, churn and retention using very different definitions.

MPN: What impact will AVOD have on subscription streaming? It has been said that consumers, since the birth of home video nearly half a century ago, have shown a willingness to pay more to not have to deal with commercials. And yet AVOD has shown remarkable growth over the last few years.

Rayburn: Consumers have different needs depending on content type (live/VOD), length of content (short-form/long-form), desired quality (HD/UHD), device it will be played back on (large screen/mobile), business model (AVOD/SVOD/hybrid) and what type of overall video “experience” they are looking for. Subscribers will pay for ads, and we have many examples of such services in the market including Pluto TV, Tubi, Roku Channel, Twitch, Peacock TV and Amazon’s Freevee. Warner Bros. Discovery, Disney and others have told the industry that their lower-priced tiers, with ads, are some of the most popular plans consumers sign up for. The entertainment business, including music and video, is not a one-size-fits-all model.

MPN: What can be done to elevate the consumer experience, and why is this important?

Rayburn: The best technology is not always what’s adopted. The right consumer experience is all about using the proper combination of technologies within the streaming video workflow to make the experience a great one. Things like ease of use, reliability of the apps and services, the quality of the video and the ability to easily find content and navigate through content, all have to work together. There is no silo in the streaming media ecosystem; you need them to all work together to provide the best experience possible.

 

NAB Issues Preliminary Attendance Figures, Sets Dates for 2023 Show

LAS VEGAS — The National Association of Broadcasters (NAB) on April 27 announced preliminary registered attendance of 52,468 for the 2022 NAB Show, the big broadcast trade show for the media, entertainment and technology industries that was held here April 23 through today.

“We are thrilled that our exhibitors, attendees and partners from all corners of the world turned out in force this week in Las Vegas,” said NAB president and CEO Curtis LeGeyt. “The enthusiasm and engagement on the show floor, in sessions and throughout the entire event have been invigorating.”

Of the registrants, 11,542 came from outside the United States, representing 155 countries

All numbers are based on pre-show and onsite registration and subject to an ongoing audit. 

The NAB also announced that the next NAB Show, the centennial celebration of the first NAB Show, will be held April 15 through 19, 2023 in Las Vegas.

New, Emerging Technologies Take Center Stage at NAB 2022

LAS VEGAS — Attendees at the National Association of Broadcasters (NAB) show this week can’t help but notice the differences between the big broadcast show, back after a two-year absence, and CES 2022 just three months earlier.

Masks were conspicuously absent, social distancing went out the window, and people were shaking hands with the enthusiasm and vigor of campaigning politicians.

We may not be in the clear from COVID-19 just yet, but you wouldn’t know it from the looks of the NAB show, which concludes its four-day run April 27.

Attendance estimates have already been revised upwards 10% to 55,000, and the evening party circuit is in full swing.

Curtis LeGeyt (NAB photo)

As new National Association of Broadcasters (NAB) President and CEO Curtis LeGeyt said April 25 in his first State of the Industry address: “Welcome to the 2022 NAB Show! Six words that I’ve waited three years to say!”

Officially, the show’s focus is on broadcast, entertainment and technology — but in truth it’s door No. 3. Just like CES, most of the excitement is being generated by new and emerging technologies, from production to monetization to distribution, mostly streaming.

LeGeyt even said as much, promising attendees, “This week will offer a reimagined and unforgettable experience as we explore the technologies that will power this industry for years to come.”

The new head of the NAB noted that “the next generation of technologies includes not only the revolutionary new broadcast standard — ATSC 3.0 — but also other content delivery methods — whether it’s 5G, streaming, or mobile video.”

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On the policy side, LeGeyt vowed support for the trade group’s legacy broadcast membership. He called for Congress to take action “to rein in the gatekeeping ability of the Big Tech giants who are stifling the economics of local news.” He urged lawmaker and regulators to “modernize media ownership laws to reflect the realities of the marketplace,” and called on the FCC “to reorient how it thinks about broadcast policy more broadly.” He also encouraged congressional support for the Local Radio Freedom Act, which opposes a new performance fee on local radio stations.

At the two-day Streaming Summit, which concludes April 26, conference chair Dan Rayburn shared industry outlooks and trends — and reiterated what he said in an interview on the NAB Amplify website earlier this year: that while the proliferation of streamers has left consumers feeling “overwhelmed” due to the escalating cost of subscription stacking, AVOD is providing them with a free or cheaper alternative, even if there’s a lack of premium content and newer movies and shows.

Earlier, on Sunday, PBS Chief Digital and Marketing Officer Ira Rubenstein and Wavetable founder Howard Gray discussed public television’s streaming strategy. Rubenstein said streaming is important, but “complicated” for PBS. During his eight years at PBS, he said, “I’ve been very focused on broadening the distribution of our local stations to digital, and you have to do that at scale. It’s just not practical for every one of our 300 stations to figure out on their own live streaming to Roku and other devices.”

As a result, he said, PBS has been working in partnership with companies such as YouTube and DirecTV Stream on “bringing our content to those live platforms.”

On the eve of the show,  Whip Media, an enterprise software platform and data provider, announced partnerships with Plint, Digit, Limecraft, and NexSpec for the Whip Media Exchange, the company’s global licensing and research platform for film and TV content. The four are the latest companies to join Whip Media’s global distribution services program, which includes existing partners Bitmax, Giant Interactive and OD Media. Through the program, Whip Media offers content buyers and sellers access to a network of partners to support content distribution and accelerate deal-making.

Whip Media and partners held a Sunday evening party at the Vdara. (L-R): Saj Jayasinghe, Whip Media’s SVP of global enterprise account management; James Crossland, SVP and head of global content operations at WarnerMedia; Jonathan Schiminske, VP of client relations and operations strategy at WarnerMedia; Carol Hanley, president of Whip Media; and Jerry Inman, chief marketing officer at Whip Media. (Media Play News staff photo)

Plint, a provider of dubbing, subtitling and cloud-based localization workflow management tools to the TV and movie industry, will provide smart localization services to Exchange clients as they license their content globally.

Digit, a progressive media supply chain business offering transcoding, monetization and delivery across VoD, OTT and broadcast, will provide global content distribution services.

NexSpec, which offers SaaS solutions for media and entertainment companies, will help Whip Media Exchange customers redefine inventory management and automate the media distribution supply chain.

And Limecraft, an online collaborative workspace for video production, will allow Exchange clients to take advantage of the latest in AI and machine learning to automate the grunt work and to speed up production and distribution processes, including subtitling and localization.

“As the amount of streaming content available has exploded and spread to more global markets, we’ve developed an ecosystem of leading partners that help facilitate the entire content licensing process as content distribution models rapidly evolve,” said Alisa Joseph, SVP of business development and strategy for Whip Media.

The NAB Show is put on by the National Association of Broadcasters, an advocacy association for America’s broadcasters. The NAB advances radio and television interests in legislative, regulatory and public affairs.

NAB Opens in Las Vegas Amid Growing Concerns Over Streaming’s Future

LAS VEGAS — The annual National Association of Broadcasters (NAB) trade show opened April 23 just as the streaming business, one of the show’s key focal points, is encountering unprecedented turbulence.

The NAB show runs through April 27 and this year is hosting representatives from broadcast, entertainment and technology interests in 154 countries. The show is returning to Las Vegas after being waylaid for two years by COVID-19; organizers have said they expect up to 50,000 attendees.

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The 2022 edition of the annual trade show has three themes — creation, connection and capitalization — with a special focus on intelligent content.

“As a platform for millions of dollars in commerce, the NAB Show is pivotal in ushering in the latest innovations propelling content forward and leading our community into new territory,” new NAB President and CEO Curtis LeGeyt said in a statement. “We are excited for attendees and exhibitors to experience the curated journeys available on our reimagined convention floor as we get back to doing business face-to-face.”

Acquisition and production companies are in the Create zone. Distribution companies are in the Connect area, while monetization companies are located in Capitalize.

A two-day Streaming Summit, which begins today (April 25), will feature speakers and presenters from the OTT, broadcast, sports and streaming media industry, discussing technical and business challenges and opportunities in packaging, monetizing and distributing online video. Topics range from ingestion and transcoding to media management and playback. 

Highlights include conference chair Dan Rayburn sharing some of the latest industry trends and outlooks; a “fireside chat” with Warner Bros. Discovery executives on delivering live sports through digital platforms; and a panel discussion on bundling and distribution strategies for growing subscribers.

The show opened a week after Netflix stock nosedived after the leading streaming service reported a loss of subscribers rather than the expected gain. Fearful investors dumped the streamer’s stock amid growing concerns that SVOD growth is stalling as consumers grapple with too many services at too high a monthly cost. A TiVo study last year found that due to subscription stacking, the average household SVOD cost, including the required internet access, is $142 a month, higher than the average cable bundle.

The NAB Show is put on by the National Association of Broadcasters, an advocacy association for America’s broadcasters. The NAB advances radio and television interests in legislative, regulatory and public affairs.

NAB Show Launches April 23 With Attendees From 154 Countries

The NAB Show, the annual conference for broadcast, entertainment and technology professionals, will host attendees from 154 countries April 23–27 in Las Vegas, according to organizers.

Speakers at the show include Nick Cannon, Ashleigh Banfield, Lester Holt, Byron Allen and comedian Jim Gaffigan.

Attendees from outside the United States make up nearly one-quarter of all pre-registered 2022 NAB Show attendees, which closely mirrors the 2019 NAB Show percentage, according to organizers.

“At a time when content can travel around the world in a blink of an eye, there is nothing like NAB Show to help the content community discover the tools, trainings and insights that will unleash the next global phenomenon,” said Chris Brown, NAB EVP and managing director of global connections and events, in a statement. “We are excited to welcome back our friends and partners from all across the globe as our industry gets back to doing business in person.”

The NAB Show participates in the U.S. Department of Commerce’s Trade Event Partnership Program, which recruits international trade delegations to select U.S. trade shows and connects international buyers with U.S. suppliers.

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Delegations attending the show hail from Brazil, Columbia, Germany, India, Japan, Mexico, Nigeria, Panama, Peru, Turkey, Vietnam and more.

The NAB Show’s exhibit floor, located in the North Hall, Central Hall and the newly constructed West Hall of the Las Vegas Convention Center, will host 358 exhibitors from 38 countries outside of the United States, including the United Kingdom, Canada, Germany, Belgium and France. The exhibition will also host the following pavilions:

  • Bavarian Pavilion — Central Hall
  • Brazilian Pavilion — North Hall
  • French Pavilion — West Hall
  • Great Britain & Northern Ireland Pavilion — North Hall
  • Global Trade Show Row — West Hall

 

Additionally, several international organizations, including the Brazilian Society of Television Engineering (SET), will host meetings for their members at the NAB Show. Demonstrations of global technologies currently deployed outside of the United States will also be conducted by broadcasters and other media and entertainment companies throughout the confab.  

The NAB Show is put on by the National Association of Broadcasters, an advocacy association for America’s broadcasters. The NAB advances radio and television interests in legislative, regulatory and public affairs.

NAB Show Canceled for Second Year, Eyes Return in April 2022

Concerns over the coronavirus Delta variant, and the pullout of several high-profile exhibitors, has prompted organizers of the annual National Association of Broadcasters (NAB) Show to scrap its live event, scheduled for October in Las Vegas.

Key elements of the show will be offered online, with a planned return to an in-person event in April 2022.

The move comes less than one month after organizers announced they would require attendees to provide proof of COVID-19 vaccination.

The April 2020 NAB Show was one of the first big events to be canceled after the COVID-19 pandemic was declared by the World Health Organization on March 11, 2020.

In a Sept. 15 email Chris Brown, EVP and managing director of Global Connections and Events at the NAB, wrote, “For more than a year we have worked tirelessly to bring our industry together safely in Las Vegas at NAB Show. Unfortunately, the pandemic and surge of the Delta variant has presented unexpected and insurmountable challenges for our global community. … It has become apparent in the face of these challenges that we can no longer effectively host NAB Show or our co-located events, the Radio Show and Sales and Management Television Exchange, in person. … We will not move forward with a show that delivers anything less than the excellence our community has come to expect and deserves from us.

While we are disappointed that we will not be together again in person next month, we look forward to converging at the 2022 NAB Show, April 23-27, 2022, to reignite our passion for our business and focus on a bright future ahead.

Stay tuned for details regarding virtual options for accessing select 2021 NAB Show content through NAB Amplify.”

The NAB Show has become increasingly focused on streaming in recent years.

NAB Show to Require Proof of COVID-19 Vaccination

The NAB Show scheduled for Oct. 9-13 in Las Vegas and associated co-located events will require attendees to provide proof of COVID-19 vaccination, Chris Brown, EVP and managing director of global connections and events for the National Association of Broadcasters, wrote in an email to the community.

“While the enthusiasm is building, we are keenly aware of health and safety concerns tied to the spread of the COVID-19 Delta variant and want to assure you that we are putting in place a comprehensive, data-driven plan that prioritizes safety and creates a productive environment at these events,” he wrote. “We have worked for the past several weeks to finalize protocols that will maximize the experience and safety of all members of the NAB Show community. This process has involved extensive consultation with health and safety experts, gathering feedback from a range of exhibitors and attendees, and review of the safety measures recommended by national and local health authorities, including Nevada Governor Steve Sisolak’s important announcement this week regarding large events.”

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The show floor will feature major brands such as Amazon Web Services, AJA, B&H, Canon, Grass Valley, MediaKind, Panasonic, Ross, Sony, Verizon and more, he wrote.

Major industry events, such as the Radio Show, Sales and Management Television Exchange and AES Show, will co-locate in Las Vegas.

NAB Announces Free NAB Show Express May 13-14

The NAB Show’s new digital experience, NAB Show Express, will take place May 13-14, 2020, according to a release from the National Association of Broadcasters.

The platform is free and designed to engage the NAB Show community by offering 24-hour access to content curated and customizable for the global media and entertainment community. NAB Show Express offers three educational channels, on-demand content and a Solutions Marketplace featuring exhibitor product information, announcements and demos.

Registration for the event will open April 20 at NABShowExpress.com.

The traditional NAB show in Las Vegas in April was canceled due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Powered by Brightcove Inc. and Frequency, NAB Show Express will comprise three education channels that mirror traditional NAB Show experiences. These include:

  • BEIT Express, a channel focused on broadcast engineering and information technology;
  • NAB Show Experience, offering a variety of educational sessions, product innovation showcases and interviews with industry trailblazers;
  • And Tech Talks, an NAB Show Live Special Edition, produced by Broadcast Beat and showcasing relevant conversations with NAB Show community influencers.

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Each channel will feature eight hours of content streamed daily and available on-demand. NAB Show Express will also offer NAB Show’s podcast, exploring relevant themes and featuring speakers.

The digital platform will feature more than 100 educational sessions, including interactive panels and select sessions originally slated for the NAB Show in Las Vegas, such as NAB President and CEO Gordon Smith’s State of the Industry address. Education partners include the Advanced Imaging Society, the Advanced Television Systems Committee (ATSC), the Broadcast Education Association (BEA), Future Media Conferences (FMC), #GALSNGEAR, the Hollywood Professional Association (HPA), the International Trade Association for Broadcast and Media Technology Suppliers (IABM), the North American Broadcasters Association (NABA) and the Society of Broadcast Engineers (SBE), among others.

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The NAB Show Express Solutions Marketplace will offer exhibitor profiles, company-hosted events, press conferences and special offers for those interested in exploring new products and exhibitor news, according to NAB. Resources, such as industry-related white papers, articles, webinars, guides and research reports, will also be available for those who register.

Additionally, NAB Show Express will feature three standalone training and executive leadership events for which separate registrations will be available soon. These include:

  • Executive Leadership Summit (May 11), produced in partnership with Variety – free to attend;
  • Cybersecurity & Content Protection Summit (May 12), produced in partnership with Content Delivery & Security Association (CDSA) and Media & Entertainment Services Alliance (MESA) — registration fees apply;
  • And Post | Production World Online (May 17 – 19), produced in partnership with Future Media Conferences (FMC) — registration fees apply.

NAB Show Moves from ‘Postponed’ to ‘Canceled’

The annual National Association of Broadcasters (NAB) show, scheduled for April in Las Vegas, has moved from “postponed” into the “canceled” category.

In a March 20 email NAB president and CEO Gordon Smith announced that rather than rescheduling the big TV show for later this year, “NAB would be unveiling a new digital offering called NAB Show Express, and enhancing NAB Show New York later this year.”

“The COVID-19 pandemic has created a truly unprecedented situation around the world,” Smith wrote. “We believe it is our responsibility to help stop the spread of COVID-19, and put the health and safety of our show community first.”

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Noting that “the landscape has continued to shift dramatically,” with sports leagues and school districts shutting down and business closures sweeping the nation, “it is impossible to hold a rescheduled 2020 NAB Show this year. We will instead proceed with a two-pronged approach to deliver as much value as possible under these circumstances to our exhibitors, partners, and the broadcast industry as a whole.”

First, Smith writes, “we are exploring a number of ways to bring the industry together online, both in the short and long term.”

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NAB Show Express, launching in April 2020, “will provide a conduit for our exhibitors to share product information, announcements and demos, as well as deliver educational content from the original selection of programming slated for the live show in Las Vegas, and create opportunities for the community to interact virtually,” Smith writes.

Second, he continues, “we will be enhancing NAB Show New York with new programs, partners, and experiences. We have already had numerous conversations with show partners about expanding their participation, and have heard from numerous exhibitors interested in enhancing their presence at this fall’s show. NAB Show New York represents the best opportunity for companies to announce and showcase their latest innovations and comes at a perfect time for the industry to gather face-to-face to restart, refocus, and reengage as we move forward together.”

NAB Show New York is scheduled to be held Oct. 20 and 21.