In 2021, the TV industry had a total worldwide revenue of over 230 billion dollars.
Even though this is an already impressive number, the industry’s annual revenue is said to increase even more in the years to come. With that being said, there has never been a better time to establish your very own TV network. However, before you start your TV channel, there are some things you can consideration and implement so that your channel reaches its ultimate success.
Every new TV channel owner needs to make sure they’re familiar with the important beginning strategies, elements, and rules for launching their network.
Naturally, we at TvStartup understand that you need all the support you can get. That’s why we’ve compiled a list of the 10 important things you need to know before starting your TV channel. So, let’s get started.
1. Find Your Niche
The first thing any creator looking to start their own channel should do is establish their channel’s brand, meaning they need to decide what their channel is about.
There are different TV industry niches you can choose from depending upon the type of content you’ll be making and the audience you wish to reach. Really take some time out and determine the end goal of your channel. It’s not enough to just pick a genre and roll with it. You need to know the specifics of A) what your channel is trying to accomplish; B) how you’re going to accomplish it, and; C) who your audience is going to be.
Once you determine those things, you will determine your niche. And once you determine your nice, it is important you stick with it and always stay on-point when it comes to your content.
2. Get Your Technical Equipment Ready
Making sure that you gather and ready all the technical equipment that you need for your TV Network isn’t something to overlook. Don’t get worried when we say technical equipment because depending upon the scale of your channel and the broadcasting measures, the technical equipment can differ.
For example, if you’re running a news broadcast, you’re going to need things such as a broadcasting space, apt lighting measures, high-quality cameras, microphones, reporters, and much more.
On the other hand, if you’re thinking of running an on-demand TV show channel, you can get started with a good CMS, great content, and high-speed internet. So, technical equipment is subjective, but the goal is to get it ready before you start.
3. Choose the Right OTT Service Provider
There are a few OTT service providers out there, mostly focusing on certain aspects of the streaming world. Make sure you select an OTT provider who can accommodate all of your needs, whether you are looking to create video-on-demand categories, schedule playlists, or predominately focus on live streaming.
It’s very important that you prioritize OTT providers who offer customer support, a user-friendly dashboard, multiple monetization options for your content, the ability to easily collaborate with other creators, and a powerful CMS capable of handling all of your creative needs.
4. Have Some Content Beforehand
Before you start your TV channel, you need to make sure you have at least 4 hours of content. If not, then you won’t have enough video to play on a scheduled playlist.
Of course, you can start with more than 4 hours of content. The general rule of thumb is just to have at least 4 hours. This helps your channel have a more established feel for those who will see your channel first. You want to always do everything you can to make sure your channel is seen as a dominant player in your niche, especially at the beginning of its launch.
5. Know How You’re Going to Get Paid
Obviously, you’re going to have to set up a proper payment method for your viewers and subscribers. This comes along with picking the right OTT provider who should allow you to monetize your content.
The OTT provider of your choosing should offer several gateway methods for your viewers to choose from. Whether it be PayPal, Stripe Payment Processing, or another transaction method, make sure you aren’t limited on how you receive your funds.
Your OTT provider should be giving you access to these transactional gateways so that you can generate revenue from your content by A) running ad-injections; B) placing subscription rates on certain or all content and ; C) placing pay-per-view event charges on certain content.
These options allow for a decent amount of profit to be made from your video and audio content. That’s why it is vital that you have the necessary access to different forms of payment.
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6. Create Good Content
Without a doubt, the most important part of any channel is its content. From your channel’s initial launch, you’re going to want to start off with a bang. That’s because in today’s world, content is king. You’re going to have to consistently come up with fresh, unique, and high-quality content.
If you’re successful in doing so, you’re going to gain the interest and attention of a lot of viewers and hopefully life-long subscribers.
Just make sure your content is on brand and matches your niche, and you never force anything that doesn’t align with your channel. The number one mistake content creators make is lack of consistency, which brings us to:
7. Understand Consistency
Yes, this needs to be said again and again. While most people are aware that consistency plays a major role for any success story, very few truly practice it.
When it comes to starting your own TV network, the deciding factor in whether your channel makes it or not can very much be consistency. This is because sadly, many people think putting a piece of content out here or there is going to make them go viral, and in turn, they will become rich and famous.
The truth is, you need great content that is put out on a regular basis if you actually want to have a thriving channel. You have to be driven and disciplined when it comes to your craft if you want to reap its benefits.
8. Know Marketing 101
Yes, starting your channel on platforms such as Roku, Fire TV, and Apple TV can bring in a large number of organic traffic, no marketing necessary. However, understanding just the basics of how your channel will be marketed is very useful if you want to gain even more in viewership. Alongside choosing an OTT provider who can answer all of your marketing questions, it is best to at least do the minimal amount of research on how to better your channel’s growth.
Here, we’ll even help you get started. Did you know that platforms such as Roku automatically place every new channel into what they call the, “New Channel Category,” and then separate each new channel by niche so that they are easy to find by new viewers? While that is a huge first step for gaining traffic when you launch your channel, make sure you also check out other resources such as Roku’s 30-day marketing tool and resources on the basics of digital marketing.
9. Use Social Media
So, once you have some of the basics of digital marketing down, use it to your advantage. Post on social media that your new channel is on the way and engage with your followers before you even launch. Build up and leverage your engagement as much as you can so that people get excited about what is to come from your brand and channel. This will ensure that you have both organic traffic from being a new channel and promoted traffic from your social media accounts.
Also, make sure you have chosen an OTT provider who will allow you to re-stream the content you make on your channel to social media such as YouTube and Facebook. This is incredible important so that you can save time and energy, as you should be focusing on the quality of your content rather than the functionality of the software you are using.
10. Strategize and Schedule
Lastly, you want to make sure you have a strategized schedule for your content. Remember how we mentioned in finding your niche that you need to have goals when it comes to the specifics of your channel? This is where you decide how you are going to implement your strategy for those goals and create a schedule for your content.
Scheduling your content will help you stay on point with your niche and teach you true consistency. We’re not talking about saying things like, “Okay, I’ll post new content twice a week,” and then calling that a schedule. While it’s great to know how often you wish to post, statements like that are lacking critical information and leaving questions unanswered. Which days of the week are you going to post? What kind of content are you going to show your viewers? Make sure you fill in all of the blanks so that your channel stays on track and never leaves your viewers disappointed.
Making a great content piece is what gets you an audience, consistently making great content pieces is what KEEPS an audience. Schedules do matter.
Knowing these 10 things before starting your channel will help you build the best possible experience for both yourself and your audience.
You can now have a successful channel that brings in both organic and promoted traffic, providing life-long subscribers.
And, since you understand the value of monetizing your channel’s content and catering to your audience’s desires, the last thing to do is launch your established TV network.
To your success!