Blog | Leslie E. Russell, Linear Distribution and Marketing
June 4, 2015

Content Distribution Technologies Integrate to Create a New Paradigm

In the past few years, content distribution has become increasingly complicated as assets need to be prepared, managed and delivered for both broadcast and digital workflows. In order to accommodate all platforms, a single asset needs to be acquired, moved, stored, converted and transported using multiple files, technologies and expertise to ensure that it can be seen by viewers, when and where they want it. These disparate workflows are complex, causing frustration at a minimum and significant costs or duplication of efforts in the worst cases.

As online video consumption moves to the mainstream and the technologies proven, content owners are looking for ways to streamline the workflow from asset creation and acquisition to distribution and playout at its destination.

While ideal, this panacea remains illusive. Many content owners have either set out to build their own unified workflow or settled for a piecemeal solution comprised of a network of partners. Some specialize in the preparation and transmission of linear or on demand content. Others have made their mark in the digital space, focusing on online content management, streaming or player capabilities. Yet others offer a network on which to move all of the content. And, though the market is crowded with partners promising an end-to-end solution, very few offer a complete approach to the complexities of multiplatform content distribution.

Rather than cobbling together a broadcast and digital solution, consider a content distribution partner who can offer a holistic solution that includes:

  1. Seamless acquisition capabilities – The first step in managing multiple file types and delivery formats is getting all of them in the same place. This may seem obvious, but can be a challenge. Before selecting a partner, be sure they can accept your assets in any format you have them and let them handle conversion. This will save you time and money.
  2. Connections to diverse destinations – No matter how you manage your assets, they cannot get consumed until they reach a distribution point. Cable operators, VOD systems, broadcast stations, radio sites and online channels are only a few potential destinations. To simplify your workflow, select partners with maximum reach amongst your target audience. The more places a single partner can get your content, the greater economy of scale you receive.
  3. Infrastructure – Some partners have a large dish farm, others a vast network of leased fiber, and others still have robust data centers or content management capabilities. Imagine how much simpler distribution would be if you could access all of this in a one place. It would be like going to a single station where you could choose to take a plane, train, car or hovercraft depending on what was going to get to your destination the fastest.
  4. Innovation – Technology is changing at a pace unprecedented in the history of broadcast television, cable or online content distribution. The platforms built today may not sustain the business models of tomorrow. Every time you switch there are costs in both money and time to reestablish your library or business requirements. Look for partners with the platforms to support you today and the insights to help you succeed tomorrow.

In today’s content distribution landscape, there are more players and more variables than ever before. Finding a way to navigate the complexities can be overwhelming. Building your own solution is a gargantuan undertaking; identifying a partner, only slightly less daunting.