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Taking Care of Business
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Old October 19th, 2009, 02:36 PM   #1
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Making it pay

Iíve been looking at a Tricaster/Broadcast switcher from Newtek. Neat device that seems to work as advertised. Of course the one I want ends up being about $12,000. Which begs the question, How do I pay for it?

I watched a live football game that was produced using the Tricaster, looked fine, but during the breaks the ads that they ran were not going to cover the cost of producing the game.

So I guess my question is this, how do you generate enough revenue to cover costs and make a few bucks?

Can you ever get enough online clients to make it pay? Will people pay?

I donít expect you all to divulge any secrets, but it seems like it is worth a discussion.
Thanks jm.
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Old October 19th, 2009, 02:59 PM   #2
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Instead of looking for jobs to fit the gear, you should look for gear to fit the jobs. Anyway, you need to determine what is an acceptable ROI for a $12k piece of equipment. If that ROI is 24 months, then you need to honestly ask yourself if you can average $500 per month in additional business because you own a TriCaster. Maybe you can, but I know I can't.

Fortunately, I have a local rental house that has a TriCaster Pro for $100 per day.
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Old October 19th, 2009, 03:41 PM   #3
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Good points. If I could bring in an extra grand a month, it might be worth it. It looks like a good tool, just not sure how to make it pay for itself.
If I had a rental house close by that would be an great alternative. But if you have to pay over night both ways and rent for a week its right back to being expensive. j
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Old October 20th, 2009, 06:58 AM   #4
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In my opinion it would be a foolish business purchase based on the information you have provided....
(A) You do not know how you would pay for the gear.
(B) You do not currently have any clients requesting this service.
(C) A similar setup in your area can not generate enough income to cover operating expenses.
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Old October 20th, 2009, 08:25 AM   #5
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David's dead right. Let the gigs drive the gear you need. Not the other way around. While the Tricaster looks like a neat bit of kit, do you really need a $12,000 toy?
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Old October 20th, 2009, 11:09 AM   #6
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I agree with whats been said. Now is not the time to be wasting money. I would not buy one if I couldn't pay cash for it.

But at what point does a company offer new services?

Perhaps this is the most important question. Is there an emerging market for such a service?

Yes I know its dangerous on the bleeding edge of things.

jm
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Old October 20th, 2009, 09:08 PM   #7
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You have to understand your local market in order to know the trends. In a relatively small market, the research could be as simple as talking to your clients, business owners that you know and even some you don't. If you know people in TV or cable in your area, sound them out too. You're trying to sniff out a need. If none of those people express the specific need you seek, it's likely it doesn't exist yet. Or ever.

Remember, they don't call it the "bleeding edge" for nothing and you don't want to bleed green if you can help it.
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Old October 21st, 2009, 11:06 PM   #8
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Start with this
Telestream Wirecast - Overview
for $449 and then grow your business.

I think one issue is that you're looking to create content and sell advertising without having a viewership.

You might find local business that might find streaming as a method of outreach. Then you'd be selling the service itself and not the advertising.

It might be political candidates interested in doing a live event/fundraiser to a ready made email list.

It could be the same for a charity looking to do an online fundraiser.

A local club interested in creating their own "channel" for live events.

A local radio station interested in creating a live video stream.

A local business forum that might want to reach a wider audience.

BTW some of the above might work as an add on to production/shoot package.

Look here for ideas
USTREAM, You're On. Free LIVE VIDEO Streaming, Online Broadcasts. Create webcasts, video chat, stream videos on the Internet. Live streaming videos, TV shows

At least for $449 you can start small.
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Old October 22nd, 2009, 08:11 AM   #9
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Craig has some great suggestions. What comes through to me is that you need to find groups or individuals who think there is tangible value in broadcasting live to the Web. Convincing people if they are closed off to the idea is like pushing a wall of Jello. Messy and not prone to success. However, if you find individuals or groups that are open to the idea and see the value, you could realistically bring them over the wall. Then all you have to do is get them to pay you. (Grin)

As an aside, I've never understood why a radio station would want to broadcast video of their studios unless it's a talkie with lots of in-studio guests. I worked in music radio ages ago and aside from the odd mad panic when I was late getting the next program element queued, nothing visually interesting happens there.
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Old October 22nd, 2009, 08:28 AM   #10
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Thanks everyone. Craig, the Wirecast looks like a geat option. I've got an old Toaster laying around to use as a switcher. Cool, thanks. jm
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Old October 26th, 2009, 10:46 AM   #11
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John, In some respects I think you'll find Wirecast more adequate than the Toaster unless you have a very recent Toaster.

You can switch with Wirecast as well as long as you can get multiple inputs into your computer.

Tripp, radio is worth watching in much the same way someone would watch a standup comic tell jokes. Body languages does a lot to enhance communication.
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