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Back to all articles
15 March 2021
7 min to read

How To Start A Streaming Service: Tips from Experts

Yevhen Piotrovskyi
CTO and Founder at Yojji | Web and Mobile Development

The success of Netflix and HBO, as well as the streaming services of Apple and Amazon, showed that more and more people tend to choose these platforms instead of standard TV. In this article, we’ll discuss how to start a streaming service and what benefits you can get from this.

Streaming Service In a Nutshell

Streaming services work on the principle of transferring content from provider to user. All content is already uploaded on a third-party server – the end-user doesn’t need to download anything to watch or listen to. The content is broadcast in real time; the download speed directly depends on the user's Internet connection.

The research by Sandvine Incorporated found that video transmission accounts for 60% of all Internet traffic, most of which is online streaming of news, TV shows, sports, films, etc., on such platforms as Netflix, YouTube, Twitch, and other industry giants. When building your own streaming service, you may draw on their experience in development, design, and marketing.

A Step By Step Guide To Create A Streaming Service

If you’re starting a streaming service from scratch, here are some tips.

  • Explore the market

First, you need to start by researching the local market. Maybe there is a lack of services where users watch video content in their own language. Or perhaps the available streaming services work slowly, offer a scanty selection of content, or their interface is flawed. By improving these shortcomings in your product, you can easily draw the audience's attention to it. A platform where every viewer can choose what they like best and pay less is a great alternative to TV.

  • Research your target audience

The target audience is your viewers who are ready to pay for your product or service. When creating your streaming service, you need to analyze who your target audience is and who will need your content.

It is also important to know what common problems users experience with similar streaming platforms. This will help you improve your product and make it even more user-friendly.

  • Decide on your niche

One of the top priorities is identifying a niche. There are many niches in the field of streaming video and you can choose the most suitable one: education, entertainment, e-sports, etc. Your best bet is to choose niches that lack premium quality products. You can also combine multiple niches like fitness and healthy food into one to expand your audience.

  • Define your content type

There are different types of video streaming services. Choose the most preferred option for your platform: whether it will be live webcasts from TV broadcasts, time-shift broadcasting, or video on demand.

  • Come up with your USP

In order for your product to be competitive, you need to offer your audience something unique and interesting. It takes research to come up with a good USP.

First of all, you need to research the user behavior with content – for this, study the reviews.

Consider the location. For your video streaming service to work well globally, you need to test it in your area first. Make sure the content you create is available globally, not just in your location.

Implement the latest trends. Technologies such as machine learning, artificial intelligence, and panoramic video are the next big things and you can benefit from them.

Offer interesting and useful features to attract users. For example, if your platform provides content in foreign languages, consider adding subtitles. Nowadays, many people learn foreign languages by watching movies – why not provide users with the opportunity to mix business with pleasure?

Consider monetization

If you’re creating a local streaming service, add payment systems that are supported specifically in your country. To go international, add payment methods that are used around the world. Let users pay by card, subscribe to the service through AppStore or Google Play, connect Apple Pay and Google Pay. Keep in mind that your reputation depends on the reliability of the payment service.

The chosen monetization strategy determines how you’ll make money. Here are some common ways to monetize:

  • Subscription

After payment, users can immediately start watching high-quality content without ads. But how to further motivate them to purchase a subscription?

  • Trial period. If your platform works by subscription, users cannot get full access to the content until the moment they pay. If you allow users to try your product before paying for it, they are more likely to become buyers. A free trial period may push up sales.
  • Extra features. Motivate users to switch from the free version of the app to the premium subscription with extra bonuses. For example, provide improved video quality: Full HD in the free version, but 4K for premium users.
  • Advertising

If you have a large and active audience, companies will pay you to advertise their products and services. This method of monetization can bring more money than a subscription. In this case, access to the video must be free, but users will have to watch the ad before and while watching the content.

  • Decide on the product functionality

Have chosen the type of content and the model on which your product will work? It's time to contact the developers and define the functionality. A team of professionals will help you make the final decision on everything related to features, tech stack, and user experience.

Top 5 Things To Consider When Creating A Streaming Service

1. Hosting

Choosing a hosting service for a streaming site usually comes between two options: your own server or the cloud. While each option has its benefits and drawbacks, the cloud seems to be preferred as it has the added benefit of scalability.

2. Multiple Content Delivery Network

A content distribution network provides high-quality streaming all over the world. It optimizes the load process and makes it possible to broadcast video worldwide with minimal loss of speed.

3. Streaming protocol

This protocol enables multichannel broadcasting. There are several streaming protocols. For instance, HLS streams from a standard web server without any special settings. The cross-platform RTMP gives priority to persistent connections. A platform that integrates the above streaming protocols will help make the broadcast the most comfortable for the user.

4. Transcoder

The transcoder converts video into various formats. This makes it possible to adapt the streams with multiple bitrates for automatic quality setting. A service supporting a number of file formats and adaptive bitrate delivery ensures better quality.

5. Cross-platform support

Cross-platform support allows viewers to enjoy content on any device. The lack of this option reduces the target audience and makes the platform virtually non-competitive.

To Sum Everything Up

The demand for new entertainment services is constantly growing, so launching a streaming platform is a good idea for a startup. By carefully considering the functionality and the monetization strategy, you can turn a streaming service into an effective business.

To develop the platform itself, as well as to configure cybersecurity systems, use the service of professionals. You can get in touch with Yojji team of developers – we have experience in creating streaming platforms, as well as supporting and ensuring the security of such services.

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Meet up in person

NL, Amsterdam

Ildar Kulmuhametov
CEO, Co-Founder

USA, Austin

Yevhen Piotrovskyi
CTO, Co-Founder