77 Predictions for Live Streaming & Digital Media in 2021
Our 6th Annual All-Star Panel Peers into the Future of Digital Media
77 Featured Predictions for Live Streaming, Podcasting, Virtual Events, YouTube Strategy, Video Marketing, Social Media, Education Technology and Online Business in 2021
Rob Greenlee on replacing in-person conferences with live virtual events
Andrew Haley on new monetization opportunities for creators
Nancy Myrland on the perfect integration of blogging, podcasting and video
PJ Taei on using video to grow a sustainable business
Andrew Kan on why YouTube likes live streams
Bee Smith imagines the pandemic without live streaming
Jon Burk on the impact of streaming on American television
Ani Alexander on making the viewer the hero of your story
Margie Analise on creating hybrid courses that include live streaming
Marc Gawith on the growth of live stream production businesses
Victor Cajiao on live video transforming relationships between musicians and fans
Louise McDonnell on live streaming in the travel industry
Wágner dos Sandos on why his agency adopted remote work pre-lockdownLeading #DigitalMedia personalities make their 2021 predictions for Live Streaming, #podcasting & #socialvideo at @LivestreamUni. #2021Predictions #livestreaming Click To Tweet
Note: Some of the links in this post are affiliate links. Livestream Universe earns money from the sale of Amazon products.
Live Streaming’s Finest Moment
Before we present the predictions for live streaming and digital media in 2021, a few thoughts on the state of the industry.
Writing about the state of live streaming at the end of 2020 isn’t as much fun as in past years. Who wants to look back at a year dominated by a pandemic? And, yet, take a moment to imagine going through these lockdowns without live streaming. It’s hard to do.
So while celebrating advances in live video might seem frivolous, it isn’t. This has been live streaming’s finest hour, bringing people together despite social distancing and providing a level of connection and interactivity not possible for most people had this pandemic hit a decade earlier.
People who had no interest in ever being on video were asking for microphone and camera recommendations so they could look and sound good during business meetings, sales calls and virtual events. Companies realized that not only were employees more productive working from home, but video conferencing technology also made it possible to retain a close connection with your workforce.
Zoom, of course, was the big winner in video conferencing and became almost ubiquitous with the ability to see and hear your whole team or have a face-to-face meeting with a colleague.
Meanwhile, the pandemic brought on-site industry conferences to a screeching halt before the first quarter of 2020 was over. Many in-person events were canceled while others held sessions online.
Transition to Virtual Events
Livestream Universe’s first experience putting on a live virtual event was our half-day broadcast where most of the predictions in this post were delivered. We learned what can be done over a short period of time, organizing the live party and show in less than two weeks.
To celebrate our 5th Anniversary, 60 friends, creators and entrepreneurs joined us on live video while hundreds more participated in the live chat. It was a moving confirmation of the strength of virtual connections and communities.
We were live for five hours without a break, which was exhilarating for me as a broadcaster. Enjoy the 77 predictions as well as the fun banter and shared experiences featured in many of the entries below.
Thanks to a great group of respected industry brands that celebrated with us. A total of 13 brands offered more than $13,000 in prizes, some reaching out unsolicited to offer giveaways.
Livestream Universe looks forward to hosting more live virtual events, including an award show, and applying what we learned during the party to future productions.
Innovative Virtual Event Organizers
Three event organizers featured in our predictions stand out for their ability to adapt to, and thrive in, the virtual format.
Dan Currier had a short window to convert People of Video from an on-site to online conference. He used UScreen to provide on-demand access to the pre-recorded video of each presentation, StreamYard for live panels and interviews with speakers, and Zoom for networking. With a powerful lineup of speakers, high-quality branding and effective use of the aforementioned tools, People of Video is positioned as the northeast’s premier video marketing event for creators in 2021.
Super Joe Pardo, host of the annual Independent Podcast Conference, moved to fill the void left by cancellations of in-person events by hosting full-day virtual conferences every other weekend. As a speaker, it was a great way to hone your craft at presenting virtually and come up with new topics to add to your offerings. It also meant that Joe was an old pro at running a virtual production when it was time for the big annual event.
No virtual event I attended better replicated the feel of an in-person conference than Podfest Global Summit. While setting the Guinness Book of World Records title for most attendees at a one-week podcast virtual conference with 5003, founder Chris Krimitsos leveraged the features in the Whova app to enable the conversations and virtual meetups that typically happen in the hallways and hotel lobbies. His subsequent VidFest Global Summit even added a virtual expo where attendees could meet with vendors to learn about products and receive special offers.
Investors Target Live Streaming Technology
On the broadcast side of live streaming, StreamYard continued on its remarkable growth trajectory, becoming the choice of newbies, experienced creators and even veteran television professionals for its winning combination of ease of use and high-quality audio and video.
The level of stability achieved by StreamYard is unmatched by other browser-based live streaming and live video production tools. As a result, StreamYard’s total number of broadcasts increased from 350,000 in 2019 — its first full calendar year in operation — to 9 million in 2020. (Full disclosure: I host a show sponsored by StreamYard. I was an enthusiastic StreamYard user prior to that arrangement.)
In early 2021, fast-growing virtual event production startup, Hopin, acquired StreamYard for $250 million in cash and stock options. Hopin plans to integrate StreamYard as the native live streaming tool for its event producers while continuing to have StreamYard operate as a standalone product for those not hosting events through Hopin.
Investment in live streaming products was also strong in 2020. Restream raised $50 million in 2020 following the release of its studio functionality that enabled live video production without the need for additional tools. BoxCast brought in $20 million in Series A funding assisted by Shure.
Multistreaming has evolved from a professional/specialty feature to a commonplace practice among many new and experienced live streamers. StreamYard, Restream and Switchboard Live all provide reliable and affordable services for sending your video to multiple destinations.
Simulcasting your live streams across social media means you are feeding content to your audience where they prefer to consume it, while no longer captive to the whims of a single platform’s algorithm. Successful streamers often have dedicated audiences on more than one social channel.
Live Streaming Platforms Rise and Fall
Amazon Live rolled out live steaming to its associates in the influencer program. With the alignment of e-commerce and live streaming likely to move across all the major platforms, Amazon Live is a great option for getting your feet wet pitching affiliate products during your live streams.
Meanwhile, the last of the three major pioneering social livestreaming apps from 2015 is shutting down. Periscope has stopped accepting new users and will go dark in March 2021. Twitter plans to move all live video to the main app.
It would be a good idea for anyone with a following on Periscope to encourage your audience to connect with you on Twitter. Start Tweeting more frequently to ensure engagement keeps the new arrivals connected.
This time last year, I would’ve told you that LinkedIn Live is the best opportunity in live streaming. LinkedIn seemed to notify your entire network once you went live. Organic reach, however, began dropping steadily over time until streaming to LinkedIn became an afterthought for many creators.
Waiting on LinkedIn Live
LinkedIn Live remains in Beta and is still available by application only. Perhaps LinkedIn is planning some new features or a wider rollout, which might lead to better organic reach. One such feature, scheduling, was added in 2020. This solves what was perhaps the biggest challenge for LinkedIn Live users — not having a link to share with your community prior to going live.
If I asked you for the most popular category of live streams on Twitch, you would probably say gaming. And for most of Twitch’s existence, you would’ve been right. Recently, Just Chatting passed gaming on the world’s busiest live streaming platform. Twitch remains a challenging destination for non-gamers to build an audience for live shows (different from Just Chatting) and podcast recordings.
Vertical Video Arrives
Vertical video is one of the hottest trends in digital media at the end of 2020. TikTok has exploded with fun, creative videos of less than a minute grabbing the attention of its young demographic. However, that which starts with the teens and early 20s — think Facebook and Instagram — won’t stay that way for long.
Digital marketers and creators of all ages are learning the platform and many seem to genuinely enjoy using it. To provide users with a similar experience, YouTube added Shorts and Instagram launched Reels. Video stories are now a part of every major social network and probably some minor ones too.
The Clubhouse app has taken off with live, real-time, interactive audio conversations on mobile devices. Think Blab on iOS without the video and recordings. Given the amount of time people are spending on video in Zoom meetings, Clubhouse is tapping into the desire for voice-only discussion in a closed, community-type environment.
Since users don’t have to worry about their visual appearance or set up studio gear to participate, it’s quick to jump into a room and join the live conversation. Discovery is unmatched as everyone schedules and attends events and meetups within the app. Twitter is expected to jump on this trend with a new feature for live audio-only discussion.
Creators Getting Paid
Creators are also moving live and recorded videos to closed venues to monetize their following and expertise with paid, exclusive content. Courses, subscription communities, YouTube channel memberships, Patreon supporter perks and mastermind groups provide educational or entertainment content and/or increased access to the creator. Members-only live streams are a popular feature or perk in many of these programs.
Options abound from the Netflix-stye, premium all-in-one video monetization platform, UScreen, to an ever-growing number of course and membership SaaS products entering the space where Thinkific, Teachable and Kajabi remain the most widely recognized names. Plenty of DIYers are also monetizing with a landing page, PayPal account, Zoom subscription and Facebook Group.
Livestream Universe believes that audio is the most important technical aspect of your live video. It should almost always be the first priority when it comes to making any purchases toward your livestreaming kit (assuming you already have a computer or smartphone, earbuds/headphones and internet access). The value in most live streams comes more from what you say than your visual presentation.
New Year, New Gear
For the past five years, it has been a no-brainer to recommend the Samson Q2U USB/XLR dynamic microphone as the first purchase for anyone in need of an audio upgrade from built-in mics, earbuds or USB condenser mics that pick up too much background noise. It was both less expensive and sounded better on most voices than any of the other well-known USB microphones.
This fall, Shure changed the game with its own USB/XLR combo microphone, the MV7, which looks a lot like the beloved SM7B, only it doesn’t need a mixer/audio interface, costs a lot less and has more than enough gain to work with any consumer or professional preamp. It’s the best, cleanest sounding USB microphone I’ve ever heard.
It doesn’t mean that the Shure MV7 is a better choice than the Samson Q2U for all creators. Budgets, future plans and use cases all need to be considered. It does mean that there are two strong options for new streamers and podcasters who want to sound good right out of the gate and anyone seeking the simplest setup without the extra time, space and expense of working with mixers or audio interfaces.
Audio for Video Creation & Live Streaming
If you are open to using an audio interface, the options at the consumer and professional ends of the creator spectrum have grown in recent years. Audient and Solid State Logic, companies with excellent reputations for building large studio consuls, released new, budget-friendly interface lines that are relatively easy to use, have high-quality preamps and a couple of unique features, along with a simple form-factor.
Two prominent audio companies, Focusrite and Shure, have teamed up for an affordable podcasting bundle containing the essentials for your home studio. The package includes a Focusrite Scarlett 2i2 USB audio interface, Shure SM58 dynamic vocal microphone, 25ft XLR cable, Shure SRH440 closed-back headphones and recording software.
With the Podtrack P4, Zoom has released a sub-$200, light-weight, small portable device that can record 4 XLR microphones and serve as an audio interface simultaneously, unlike the Zoom line of Handy recorders. The sound quality is also better than the Handy recorders and closer in quality to the $599 RodeCaster Pro minus the popular RodeCaster’s massive feature set and attractive, sturdy build.
The Sound Devices MixPre-3 and MixPre-6 portable mixers/recorders/audio interfaces remain unmatched in terms of sound quality, durability and versatility (as they’re designed to work with cameras on video shoots). The MixPre lines remain a favorite of professional and prosumer audio and video creators in the sub-$1000 product class.
Raising the Bar for Video
Creators at all experience levels elevated their video gear in 2020. With the whole world using webcams for Zoom calls and live streams, many creators have chosen to stand out online by constructing sets or using green screens, dialing in their lighting and making the move from webcams to mirrorless cameras and DSLRs.
The Sony a6400 is popular for live streaming with its accurate, speedy autofocus, outstanding low-light performance, and clean HDMI output. The a6400 has no recording limit and won’t overheat during long live streams. The budget-friendly Sony a5100 is a very capable camera for live streaming from home assuming you don’t need your audio to run through the camera as there is no mic input on the a5100. It also makes a great B camera.
The Canon M50 remains a popular vlogging camera with its fully articulating monitor, ergonomic grip, light-weight feel, easy-to-navigate menu and excellent color reproduction. Unfortunately, it lacks a clean HDMI output on autofocus, limiting its usability as a live streaming camera.
The M50, along with many other Canon mirrorless cameras and DSLRs, can get around the HDMI issue with software downloads that enable them to be plugged into computers as USB webcams. This also eliminates the need for capture cards but doesn’t deliver the same size resolution as HDMI.
The most exciting development in 2020 on the video side is Blackmagic Design’s ATEM Mini HDMI switchers. Bringing high-quality video scaling and switching to 4 HDMI video sources starting at $295, Blackmagic has done for video creators what Sound Devices accomplished with its MixPre audio line: making professional-quality available at consumer prices, albeit without all the features both companies include in their higher-end gear.
Podcasting is Big Business
Podcasting continues to attract investment and interest with Spotify spending big on exclusive deals with talent and on acquisitions of apps and production companies. It seems like every day another celebrity launches a podcast.
We’re also seeing the growth of podcasting in the enterprise, especially internal podcasts created as an informational and educational vehicle to communicate with employees on a device they take with them, in a content format that’s familiar and personal, and on-demand rather than at a scheduled time.
The first predictions blog post came out as 2015 turned to 2016, shortly after Livestream Universe was founded. I offer this tidbit of information in case it seems strange that the sixth annual edition follows so closely to the Fifth-Anniversary Party and Show for Livestream Universe.
A special thanks to the three people who have contributed predictions all six years: Jennifer Quinn aka JennyQ, Coach Jennie and Mitch Jackson. Thank you for your insights every year and the class you bring to the live streaming medium. It’s been an honor and a joy to share the mic with you across a variety of shows since 2015.
And a huge thank you to Beauty Bubble TV for sharing her expertise in event planning during the development of the Livestream Universe 5th Anniversary Party. Thanks as well for your support in the live chat throughout the entire five-hour live stream.
Curious about what people had to say in other years? Here are links to the previous 5 editions:
- 160 Predictions for 2020
- 105 Predictions for 2019
- 91 Predictions for 2018
- 88 Predictions for 2017
- 37 Predictions for 2016
Bring on 2021!
What’s next for live streaming and digital broadcasting?
What are the best opportunities for monetizing content?
Will live streaming shows move from social media to tv?
What’s going on with LinkedIn Live?
How will the pandemic change the nature of conferences once the lockdown has lifted?
Will the current enthusiasm for vertical video last?
Let’s get to the predictions!
Ross Brand: Let’s get right to Mr. Rob Greenlee. Rob, good to see you. How are you doing?
Rob Greenlee: I’m doing terrific, Ross. Congratulations on five years. It’s exciting to be back. This is quite an event you got, lots of people lined up and ready to provide some entertainment to your viewers here. It’s awesome.
Ross Brand: Yeah, it’s been fun. You’ve got a lot going on between Libsyn and the new professional Podcast Academy. Tell us a little bit about that. A lot of people are starting to talk about it. You’ve done an amazing job getting some buzz going in the podcast community.
New Podcast Award Show
Rob Greenlee: It’s all about trying to reward and bring attention to the podcasting medium and terrific productions and content that’s being produced. It’s not unlike what’s happened in movies and TV and the music industries around the Academy Awards or the Grammys. That’s what the organization is putting together.
Along with that, building educational initiatives and trying to bring the industry together, create some mentorship relationships between creators and people that are involved in the industry at all levels. So it’s a big effort, but it’s really focused on the content creation side of the industry. It’s exciting to see the whole industry come together to make this happen.
For many years, the podcasting industry was a bunch of stray cats running off in different directions. It’s great to see some co-working together and trying to build something that’s good for the whole industry.
Ross Brand: That’s awesome. Do you have a prediction for 2021?
Rob Greenlee: I’ve been listening to a lot of your guests here and I tend to agree with Brent (Basham) who was on earlier talking about the growth of online video.
I’ve been participating a lot in online virtual conferences and events and COVID has really put us on a fast-forward track around online video and people’s use of technology to get involved in media. I’ve been creating online media for 20 years now, but there’s a lot of people out there that jumped on the bandwagon here over the last six months. And it really accelerated this.
I always had the vision that this online media thing was to going to become something important and I think, unfortunately, it took a tragedy to accelerate that. But we’re on a fast-forward track. Online event experiences that we’re seeing are still kind of rudimentary. They’re still trying to figure it out. And as others have said prior to me, I think it’s ripe for some innovation. There’s going to be a lot of improvement in the online video virtual event experience. It’s still a little clumsy today. I just did the Podcast Movement virtual event and there’s a lot of room for improvement there, but I think that’s going to happen. I’m confident.
I’m seeing a lot of innovation, a lot of new companies really doing great things, but live video is definitely exploding. So was podcasting on a global scale. It’s all on fast forward right now.
As far as on the podcasting side, I see podcasting remaining a free and open medium. That’s probably one of the best mediums for free speech as it continues to support online open standards as opposed to a lot of the other media types that tend to get mostly behind proprietary technology.
Podcast Listener Privacy
But I do think the area of concern as we look to the future in podcasting is around listener privacy. The industry really needs to come together to work on that and to get a handle on that before it gets out of hand. So those my predictions and thoughts.
Ross Brand: I guess it’s a lot of adjusting for vendors who are used to going to events as their primary outreach to podcasters or video creators. And now they have to figure out a way with virtual events. How do we make an impact in the same way when we can’t actually stand around the table and talk to people and shake their hand and give them some merch? It’s going to be an interesting adjustment to see who can create that kind of experience. Or is there a bit different and better way to do that virtually?
Rob Greenlee: As we come out of this and get back to in-person events again, what we learn from the virtual side is going to be applied to the in-person events. We’re going to see more of these events become what they call hybrid events. It means that the things that we have learned on the virtual side will apply to the in-person events and it will grow the capacity of these events to scale on a global basis.
Ross Brand: Thank you so much for being here, Rob. I’m honored that you took the time to join us. Hall of Fame Podcaster, Libsyn VP, and the head of the new Podcast Academy’s governing board. There’s going to be an award ceremony and a lot of different things coming up. If people want to join the Academy, how can they do that?
The Podcast Academy
Rob Greenlee: Well, it’s simple. Go to ThePodcastAcademy.com and fill out the form. It’s about a hundred dollars a year right now to join. We’re also accepting nominations for a podcast to be given an award in March. So if you have a podcast that you feel real proud of, and you would like to submit it to the Academy for consideration of a Podcast Academy award, you can do that right now.
Ross Brand: That’s exciting. A lot to look forward to. Thanks so much again, Rob. Great to see you.
Rob Greenlee: Thanks, Ross.
Rob Greenlee is a Hall of Fame podcaster, chair of The Podcast Academy, co-host of the New Media Show and vice president of content and partnerships at Libsyn, a leading podcast media hosting and distribution service. InsideRadio named him to their list of 2020 Podcast Power Players.
Ross Brand: Let’s talk to the great, the amazing Chef Daniella. Thank you so much for being here, Chef D-Malfi.
Chef Daniella Malfitano: Hey, Ross. It’s good to see you. Congrats. This is huge.
Ross Brand: So I imagine you just got done with a show of your own, not too long ago?
Chef Daniella Malfitano: I did. And, because I knew I was coming on, I baked you some mini mummy Halloween cupcakes, because I wanted to celebrate with you. Unfortunately, you won’t get a taste, but I’m going to eat them all on your behalf.
Ross Brand: Well, thank you. That is so nice of you to do that. Yeah, I haven’t eaten in about five hours, but that’s okay. Throw food in my face [laughter]. No, it looks delicious. I love it.
You do such a great show. It’s amazing how you use multiple cameras with StreamYard to really bring us into your kitchen and show us how you make what you make. It’s amazing. It really is. So congratulations on all your success with the show and everything you’ve got going on.
Chef Daniella Malfitano: Thank you so much. Yeah, it’s new for me. I had never done this before this year. So I’m super thrilled to be in this ecosystem with you all now.
Ross Brand: Do you have a prediction for 2021?
Chef Daniella: You asked me the question a couple of weeks ago when you invited me to come on and I started doing a little research. I have three quick predictions. They’re all really good and they make me feel good.
Chef’s Transition to Plant-Based
The first is that the United Nations has declared 2021 as the International Year of Peace and Trust. I love that. When I read that, I was like, “Yes, I’m in it for 2021.” But that’s not all. They also say that in 2021, it’ll be the International Year of Creative Economy for Sustainable Development.
As someone who has been a chef for many years and has now transitioned to plant-based, I am all about the creative economy based on sustainable development. This felt so right for me. And then there’s one final prediction, which I think can not be more right, which is 2021 will be the International Year of Fruits and Vegetables. Now that’s something I can definitely get behind.
Ross Brand: Wow. International Year of Fruits and Vegetables. That is eating healthy. Something I need to do more of this year.
But everyone has to check out your show. Tell everybody where they can find it. You go live five days a week. It’s amazing.
Live Streaming That’s Healthy & Fun
Chef Daniella Malfitano: I do five days a week, 12:00 PM Pacific. You can find us on YouTube at Plant-Based Made Easy. That’s the name of our show. Like you just said, Ross, I’m helping people make eating healthy super fun and super easy. Those are my guarantees for watching any episode.
Every day, we make a recipe and it’s super great. We do everything from breakfast to dinners to snacks and even sweets. And it’s amazing. We have a global community now, so I hope that you guys will all join us for any day of the week that you want. Our menu is posted early. If there’s anything that looks good, come and tune in.
Ross Brand: Thank you so much. You’re a superstar. Appreciate having you here.
Chef Daniella Malfitano: Thank you, Ross..@ChefDMalfi shares her predictions for Live Streaming & #healthyeating in 2021. #2021Predictions #livestreaming Click To Tweet
Andrew Kan: Thank you, Ross.
Ross Brand: Tell everybody a little bit about Channel Reviews from TubeBuddy.
Andrew Kan: Sure. So we’re doing channel reviews from ChannelReviews.com. Think of it as a progress report for your YouTube channel. Whether you upload traditional videos or you live stream, we’re going to recommend things you should do that YouTube recommends for helping you get served to more people. Basically, it helps you grow your stream or your channel — or why not both?
Ross Brand: That’s what TubeBuddy does. It lets you grow your channel by pinpointing those opportunities. Thank you, Andrew. Let’s get a prediction from you.
Andrew Kan: Sure. I kind of started the train for you here, Ross. So my prediction is Ross will get more SuperChats. The Ross-needs-a-fund is always… No, in all seriousness, my real prediction — although Ross does appreciate SuperChat.
Ross Brand: So contribute more. If you don’t like what I do, and you want to get me off-camera, and not live streaming so much, yeah, just keep contributing. And I promise, once we get to a certain point, I’ll just take a month off and go do something else. Go ahead, Andrew.
New Tools for YouTube & TubeBuddy
Andrew Kan: The more serious prediction Is about what we’re seeing on the YouTube side. YouTube is really enjoying live streams, especially what they’re doing for the platform. As more people watch and get engaged, YouTube has said that we’re going to see more streaming tools to help YouTubers. That’s what we’re excited about at TubeBuddy. We’re going to be helping live streamers even more.
We have some new things coming out that are going to help with when to start streaming and how to optimize and benefit from that. For streamers out there, there may be a dip, but I think it’s more like an arrow where you have to pull back a little before you can really push yourself towards your target.
I’m really excited about live streaming. It’s been doing very well this year. It might take a little dip, but only so that it can go forward even stronger.
Ross Brand: Awesome. I’m looking forward to that.
Ross Brand: Next up is our friend Louise McDonnell, who has always been one of my favorite guests. Welcome. It’s awesome to see you, Louise.
Louise McDonnell: Thank you so much for inviting me, Ross. First of all, I just want to start off by congratulating you on your fifth anniversary and also for live streaming for nearly four and a half hours now. So that is the machine by itself. Your head must be absolutely fried. You will sleep tonight.
Greetings from the West Coast of Ireland. I’m delighted to be here. And just reminding you that it was this time last year that we met at the Web Summit in Lisbon, in Portugal. We were making our predictions for 2020, but honestly, we could not have forecast…
Ross Brand: Yeah, no way to predict what ended up happening this year. I’m just so glad we got a chance to meet and to do a couple of live streams in person.
Your episode of StreamYard Connect, at least on Facebook Live, is still the most popular episode that we’ve had. Around 10,000 views on Facebook, I believe. And we don’t boost anything. So, you’re a superstar and you always share such great insights regarding Facebook Marketing and social media in general.
Do you have a prediction for 2021?
Louise McDonnell: Well, my prediction for 2021 is around understanding the environment that we all find ourselves in. It’s really unusual that no matter where you are in the world, we are all experiencing the same macro environment conditions. In 2020, there has been very little or no international travel.
I’m looking at this from the consumer’s point of view. I train businesses on how to use social media more effectively. So what I will be saying to my customers? What I say to my students and the businesses that I work with is that consumers look at it from their perspective. They’re at home. A lot of them are working remotely. They’re not even getting to interact with their colleagues at work.
They’re not getting out to the high streets or the shopping centers. I know in Ireland we are currently in our second lockdown at the moment. So, we’re not even getting past two kilometers from our houses. There are no live events. No music, very few live sporting events, no local sporting events. I think that consumers are absolutely starved for live TV and they’re starved for any live broadcasts.
My prediction is that the brands that recognize this and work hard to produce really good quality live streaming broadcasts will succeed. And to not, as one of your earlier guests said in a prediction, just use live streaming as a shopping channel, which I think is a fantastic idea, by the way.
Service Sector Live Streaming
Even from an entertainment point of view, if you’re in the service sector, you have to think of how can you run interviews regularly and position yourself as an expert interview. Anyone who’s written a book, has a podcast or is selling something should regularly go live and regularly entertain and build an audience of people who look to you to be entertained.
The service sector of tourism has been absolutely obliterated. I know a lady who just won an award. She lives not too far away from me. And she has a sheep farm, one of the largest sheep farms in the area. She would have been working. She is at a tourism heritage center on the sheep farm.
And she would have been working with lots of tour operators from all over the world to bring people to the West Coast from abroad to see her lovely sheep farm. She’s now doing it using live streaming. So she is still working with the tour operators. They are still selling the tours, but she is bringing people on these tours around her farm, meeting the sheep, meeting the sheepdogs, meeting all the animals, and it’s all done virtually. I suppose the appetite is there. My prediction for 2021 is that the brands that recognize that and step up to the mark with really good, entertaining live streaming will be more successful.
Ross Brand: Well, I think it’s so true about what brands need to do when they recognize it. It’s just how are they going to do it, too? Are they going to find the right people to do it? Who owns it internally? Or who do they reach out to externally? There’s a lot of choices that they’ve never had to make before, right?
So You Are Now Live Streaming?
Louise McDonnell: Yes. But the other thing, Ross, is that a lot of people who would have pulled against going live or using live streaming or even doing live training or using video conferencing for meetings have been forced into doing it. We have a lot of late adopters who have now started using video conferencing and then have realized it’s not such a bad thing. I think that a lot of people are more open to it. And now it’s just about helping brands gain confidence so that they broadcast really good quality shows. As you say, they themselves find the guests and schedule and make something up. So they need to take a leaf out of your book, Ross.
Ross Brand: Well, thank you so much, Louise. It’s great having you on.
Louise McDonnell: You’re welcome. Thank you so much for having me..@Louisemcdsocial shares her predictions for live streaming & #VideoMarketing in 2021. #2021Predictions #livestreaming Click To Tweet
Ross Brand: He’s the founder of the world’s leading video monetization platform, Uscreen. Welcome, Pj Taei. It’s great to have you on.
PJ Taei: Thank you very much. Thanks for having me as well.
Ross Brand: How does UScreen work as far as livestreaming goes?
PJ Taei: You set up an RTMP from your webcam, StreamYard, OBS, even a GoPro. Put that key into UScreen in the backend, you hit start and then the end-user will see the countdown. They’ll get a notification when you go live. And the whole point of our live stream is it’s behind a paywall, so you are monetizing it. You keep the customer information. You can remarket to them and all that good stuff.
Ross Brand: PJ, any tips you can give for people looking to do video marketing, video selling, set up their own paywall and start to create courses or membership groups that revolve around their video content? What would you recommend as we go into 2021 as far as how to go about doing that?
PJ Taei: More and more livestreaming is here. It’s going to stay and it’s going to grow. That’s an awesome thing. Video-On-Demand is very scalable, so use live to engage and then either live or on-demand.
Monetize Live Streaming & VOD
So I would invite you to own your audience and know who they are. It’s so easy to go live on YouTube and Facebook, but do you have their email addresses? Do you know who they are? Can you sell additional content to them in the future?
It’s great to build a following, but knowing who they are and being able to monetize that content should definitely be a goal. The sooner you do that and jump on a platform such as Uscreen that helps you own your audience, that makes a big difference and you will build a sustainable business over time.
Ross Brand: PJ, thank you so much for spending a few minutes and thanks for supporting our Livestream Universe 5th-Anniversary Party with a super generous giveaway. So glad to connect with you.
PJ Taei: Absolutely, it was a pleasure. Thank you, everybody. I’ll look forward to helping you monetize your videos..@PJTaei of @uscreentv shares his predictions for Live Streaming in 2021. #2021Predictions #livestreaming Click To Tweet
Ross Brand: Scott is from LiveU. I see the backpack behind you.
Scott Sheehan: There it is. I would’ve been in trouble if I didn’t put that there.
Ross Brand: LiveU is one of the brands doing a giveaway. They’re giving away a year plan of the LRT. Tell everybody what the LRT plan is.
Scott Sheehan: LRT is LiveU Reliable Transport. It is our patented technology that makes bonded cellular do what it does. It’s more than that though. It turns all the different modems and connections, wifi, internet, into one big bite. But it also does all the super math stuff like packet ordering and adaptive bit rate. All that stuff essentially does what people didn’t think could be done, which is using cellular technology to deliver very high-quality network 1080P HD signals to online platforms or to the networks.
Bonded Cellular Video Delivery
Ross Brand: So it’s why when people go out to cover a news event or a sports event, you don’t always see a truck anymore. They’re taking a LiveU unit and using the LRT to send it back to LiveU, and then on to their destination.
Scott Sheehan: Yeah. It’s amazing. Every day somebody comes in and they say, “I really wasn’t sure, but I’m going to give this a try.” And then they come back and they say, “Yeah, it works. But I had no idea the quality level of using cellular technology.” It really comes back to LRT and the secret sauce that we use to send a high-quality 1080P signal. They say, “I had no idea the quality was so good. And we’re just going to go remote with live remote production from here on out.”
Ross Brand: Well, if you want to have the highest quality production that’s really possible — I mean, it’s just unbelievable, even if you’re streaming from a relatively low-quality camera. You can stream from a webcam through a computer, and if you’re using the LiveU Solo and the LRT cellular bonding, the clarity of the picture is off the charts. You’ve never seen anything like it on social media. So, so clear.
Scott, your prediction for 2021…
IP vs Satellite for Live Streaming
Scott Sheehan: Well, I think the world’s going to face a global pandemic with almost everyone stuck indoors and live streaming will blow through the roof in popularity as a communication mechanism. Oh, wait a minute. That one already happened. No, I think you’re going to see a rise in IP contribution of video from not only the production side with things like cellular bonding leading the way but also distribution.
You’re going to see more and more IP and you’re going to see less and less satellite for not only the production side (for the acquisition) but also on the distribution side. CBS Newspath essentially uses our matrix for IP-based distribution to all 200 affiliates. You’re going to see more and more with 5G right around the corner. And we’re leading the way. We’ve got our LU800 coming out as the first unit that will support 5G modems. 5G is going to take a while to get entrenched, but it’s going to be IP. It’s going to be all IP-based content production and distribution.
Ross Brand: Wow. That’s going to be exciting. And you’re seeing more and more sports going in the direction of using a cellular connection, right? That’s kind of the next frontier for mass adoption.
Live Streaming Sports
Scott Sheehan: Sports, I think it would have happened this year, but with sports shutting down and nobody being there, we’re predicting 2021 for sports. Specifically, a lot of at-home production because you’re still going to see it probably slowly getting back to full stadiums, but people do not want to be without their sports. We’re going to see more and more sports using equipment like LiveU for what we call at-home production. You send out the cameramen, send out some cameras and you produce everything from your studio, Ross.
Ross Brand: Thank you, Scott, for an awesome product and an awesome giveaway. We appreciate you taking a few minutes to join us.
Scott Sheehan is a business development professional and partner account manager at LIveU, the broadcast industry standard for remote live streaming video transmission via patented cellular bonding technology.Scott Seehan of @LiveU shares his predictions for Live Streaming in 2021. #2021Predictions #LiveU #livestreaming Click To Tweet
Ross Brand: Terry, are you ready to go with your prediction?
Terry Johnson: Sure.
Ross Brand: All right, let’s move you into the hot seat.
Terry Johnson: Okay. Well, first of all, I want to say thank you Ross for inviting me.
Where We First Started Live Streaming
Congratulations on five years with Livestream Universe. And you know, we go back to the Blab days.
Ross Brand: That’s right.
Terry Johnson: So, shoutout to Blab.
Ross Brand: Blab Nation at 10 in the morning, right?
Terry Johnson: Blab Nation and Live Talk Nation. Actually, we’ve gone through the whole ups and downs of live streaming platforms. Different ones that have come and gone, but you’re still here doing your thing and we’re happy.
Ross Brand: And you’re still here. Thank you.
Terry Johnson: We’re happy. So I want to say, thank you. Because you keep me going. You keep a lot of people going. You really do.
Ross Brand: Thank you.
Terry Johnson: My prediction. Because I deal a lot with small businesses and digital marketing — I know that live streaming has been happening for a while and we’ve been talking about that being a prediction that more and more people would live stream, but now we’re seeing live shopping.
So my prediction is that anyone who starts an online business is going to be like QVC. They’re going to have their own community of shopping because there are Instagram Lives with shopping. There’s Facebook Live with shopping. Google is developing their own shopping platform where you go live. And of course, Amazon Live, as you know, Ross. So I think a lot of people are going to be doing that.
Integration of E-Commerce & Live Streaming
It’s will bring a lot of people in and create a community. Also, you’re going to be able to sell your products, your goods and your services. It’s easy because people are going to join you on the apps or on the desktop. And you’re going to be selling your products and your services as a business owner — or if you have a Shopify store because Shopify is being integrated with all of these platforms. It’s really easy to jump on, watch a live and say, “Hey, I might want to buy that,” because the person that’s presenting is the owner or whoever has the shop is describing the item or giving you the value of why you should buy from them. So that’s going to be my prediction for the next year.
Ross Brand: E-commerce and selling are the future of live streaming. Thank you, Terry.
Terry Johnson is a digital marketing strategist and consultant working with small businesses in the online space. She’s the host of the Digital Marketing Strategy For Busy People podcast and live streams about business and social media on her Facebook Page.
Jon Burk: There you go. American Television, Ross.
Ross Brand: That’s outstanding!
Jon Burk: A bit of an inside joke, but anyway, good to see you. Congratulations on your five years. It’s terrific what you’re doing. I love the fact that you’ve got a community like this. So thank you for including me.
Ross Brand: How are you doing?
TV & Digital During the Pandemic
Jon Burk: Good. Actually, this pandemic has been kind of interesting because I report to an office back on the east coast in New York City, but I’ve been working out of my house (in Los Angeles) for over a decade now. So the only two things that were disrupted for me: I can’t go to the gym and I can’t travel. I can’t go to New York. Not much has changed in my world. We’re still doing the same thing. We’re pitching TV shows and we’re working on a lot of productions.
And where I’ve watched a lot of my peers watch their businesses contract, we’ve actually expanded. We’re just cooking. A lot of the shows that we’re working on now have pandemic protocols in place. They’ve almost taken a podcast kind of narrative. The audio track is laid down first.
And really all we need to do is get the crews to go out and do B-roll for the most part. It’s crews of two people, three people. We’ve had to shift and just change up the way that programs are being produced now. This is also what the broadcast and cable outlets and the streamers want. They want these efficiencies to be in place. I’m approaching this from a TV standpoint. We’ve watched all these changes come down and we’ve had to pivot. We’ve had to be nimble and just make all these changes. And because of that, we’ve been very lucky.
Al Roker’s Approach to Live Streaming
Ross Brand: And you and your boss (Al Roker) had gone in very heavily on live streaming early on, and then you pivoted to making that more of an adjunct to the larger production that you were doing and not the centerpiece. Has the pandemic changed this approach?
Jon Burk: And let’s ask him, shall we? [Holds up something that looks like Al Roker]
Ross Brand: Ladies and gentlemen, we couldn’t get Al Roker, but we got the next best thing.
Jon Burk: The Al Roker bookmark. He has 14 books out.
So, live streaming. We went all-in on this with Roker Media back in 2015 to make destination programming for different platforms that were live streaming. The problem was trying to attract brands to it because we didn’t have the vanity metrics. And that’s what brands look at. They’ll look at the numbers of viewers and followers. So we just couldn’t really sustain it.
Direct-to-Consumer Live Streaming
We were very early and now as we look at it, we see the fact, to Terry’s (Terry Johnson) point, there is going to be a revolution when it comes to commerce that’s DTC (direct-to-consumer). These announcements are coming down now, like the deal with TikTok and Shopify, and a couple of other ones as well that are coming down. It’s going to be these influencers and these people who actually have the followings going directly to their fans to bring awareness to products and be that spokesperson, but on their own platform. They don’t have to go onto the brand platform. They can do it themselves.
It’s the model that’s happening in China. That’s really is what it is and it’s just going to move over here to the States. So, that’s going to be big, the whole DTC market. They can do it themselves. But as far as live streaming for us, we see it as part of the suite of production…
Ross Brand: I like how you work the prediction in there and then you come back to answer the question. Get that prediction going while it’s on your mind.
Working in American Television
Jon Burk: I’m sorry, but I have a one o’clock pitch meeting that I have to jump on a Zoom call here, because Ross, I was supposed to be on at 12:10, but I don’t know what happened [he says in a mock snooty voice].
Ross Brand: Clearly you chose what was more important, and that’s why you’re as successful as you are in the world of American Television.
Jon Burk: I got to make money. So please move aside. Move aside, people. Once again, an inside joke.
So the live streaming component of our offerings that we do is exactly that. It’s one of the pieces of a larger multi-platform activation that happens across linear, across social, across websites. There’s also what we refer to as a pop-up with live streaming and it’s to garner excitement. Or if there is a brand that’s involved when we do branded content, this is the part that the brand gets to talk.
But for the most part, it’s not the central point of what we do, but it is definitely a part of the offerings of all the things that we do, including podcasting. We’ve pitched shows now that are not just linear TV shows, but it’s a massive funnel. And wherever we’re making the most amount of money, that’s the bottom of the funnel. A lot of times it is the linear offering, but it could be a digital platform as well.
Ross Brand: Wow. A lot going on. It’s going to be an interesting year, 2021.
Jon Burk: It really is. We get these reports from our agent, the Willam Morris Agency. They tell us what the networks are looking for, what the streamers are looking for. And it’s really interesting to read these because I’ve been reading these for years now, and streaming is where everybody is going towards. We all know that, right? That’s kind of a master of the obvious statement, but watching how these companies internally, especially out here — I live in LA — shift around their executives who were in charge of the linear side of things. Now they’re moving them out the door and digital is taking over these Hollywood institutions.
Demand for Digital Content
It’s really interesting to watch this right now because now we get these reports from our agent that we need content for our broadcast or cable outlet. And it’s not about that anymore. Now they need it for Peacock. Now they need it for all these digital offerings, while the stuff that’s on the broadcast and the cable side needs to be larger than life. So they need something that’s big and explosive, and it’s going to make a lot of noise. You know why? Because they’re losing the battle to streaming. So they need characters that are just not the usual characters and the usual stories. They need stuff that’s really going to garner that water cooler moment, if people have water coolers anymore, but just what’s in the cultural zeitgeist.
Ross Brand: And then they go over to the Plus and they watch more, they watch behind the scenes and they chat with other people, right? They pay for a subscription. Is that the idea with Peacock and all the others: ESPN Plus, HBO…
Jon Burk: Hulu. HBO Max. It’s really interesting because it’s all VOD (video-on-demand) now. Who watches (a TV show) because it comes on at nine o’clock on a Thursday, except for This is Us and sports? That’s about it. For the most part, people watch their stuff on their own time.
Ross Brand: Thank you, Jon. You have a pitch meeting so you better get going, but thank you so much for taking time away from American Television and all the great work you do. Mr. John Burk, Al Roker Entertainment. Thanks so much for being here. It’s great to see you.
Jon Burk: Thanks. You too.
Ross Brand: Joie has been spot on for two to three years, however long she’s been a part of it. She’s been spot on every year. So take it away for 2021.
Joie Gharrity: First, I just want to celebrate you.
Ross Brand: Thank you.
Joie Gharrity: Sending you so much love and appreciation. You’re so supportive and you do this amazing job of spotlighting others. Thank you, Ross, really appreciate you.
More Digital Entrerpeneurs
I’m declaring that 2021 will be the year of digital DIY. What I mean by that is that there are a ton of people out there in the marketplace who have been very resistant to jumping into the digital world, right? And next year, this is going to blow up. They’re going to be looking for endless resources, whether it’s live video, e-books, anything that can help to rock and roll their personal and professional brands out there in the marketplace. And anyone out there like ourselves.
We’ve really put ourselves in great positioning because they’re going to be looking for teachers that have been doing this for a while. We can then share our mastery with them. It can be in standalone products, one-on-one, a group, the membership programs, which Ross and I talk about all the time. I’m digging the membership stuff.
And then finally, what I’m super passionate about as well — I believe that next year will be the beginning of a trend that will start to grow bigger and bigger. We will all have our own online stores that are branded. And that’s where we’re going to be able to cross-pollinate with one another sharing each other’s resources. But also branding ourselves with our own divisions and being able to really expand our brands across our social media platforms and bringing in more and more brand evangelists.
Ross Brand: That’s awesome. It’s going to be an exciting year.
We were discussing how the predictions evolve and where this could go now that we’re doing a show that features the predictions. And you had a brilliant idea. You get all the credit. I was wondering if you wanted to say what you thought should become of this show because obviously, next year won’t be the fifth anniversary. But we want to keep doing this as a broadcast, as well as a blog post. Do you want to? It’s up to you.
Joie Gharrity: Sure. Do you want me to announce it for you? Because that would be an honor.
Ross Brand: It was such a brilliant idea. You get all the credit for it.
Predictions for Live Streaming in 2022: An Award Show?
Joie Gharrity: Thank you. I’m such a huge fan of these predictions and I get really excited about this every year because I want to see whose predictions are landing at the top, et cetera. So I said, “Ross, turn this into an award show.” Start giving out categories and really giving out the Ross Brand award. You surround yourself with so many influencers. And so that influence will only build on top of building and building. I told him that this could be a major digital component out there, like at the same level as the Webbys. So that was my download. And I’m really excited about it.
Ross Brand: Well, I’m going to do it.
Joie Gharrity: Cool.
Ross Brand: And next year, this is going to be an award show. I thank you for the idea. We’re going to have some events leading up to it. We’re going to have a big to-do and we’re going to put on the tux. Well, maybe not a tux, but you get the idea. It’ll be the digital version, so we’ll probably be in t-shirts or using our webcams or our DSLRs or mirrorless cameras, but it’s going to have kind of a reinvented energy, right? Because some of the old award shows I think are getting a little stale, but doing it digital style, doing it with these great kinds of people who are able to just be spontaneous, get on and share Ideas and think about these ideas. It’s going to be a blast.
Joie Gharrity: Congratulations. I look forward to it.
Ross Brand: Thank you so much. I love the idea.
Joie Gharrity is the founder and brand director at 113 Branding. A former Hollywood entertainment professional, she launched the first multi-media startup business for The Walt Disney Company. Joie is the author of The Red Carpet Guide to Visibility and Influence and Be Your Own Superstar..@JoieGharrity shares her predictions for Live Streaming & #branding in 2021. #2021Predictions #livestreaming Click To Tweet
Tim McDonald: Ross, you don’t look a year over five years old today.
Ross Brand: No, I haven’t aged at all. That’s what happens when you can’t cut your hair for a year.
Tim McDonald: We met at a networking event in New York with Mark Babbitt, actually. What I was going to say was we knew each other before this all started. So I was doing the Community Manager Hangout every Friday on Google Plus at the time and met Ross. And then you launched Livestream Universe. I know in the first year I was one of your guests and it’s just been so amazing to see you continue to grow and turn this into what it is.
In the Days Before Live Streaming
And I love what Todd (Bergin) just said. You have always been so helpful and so willing to help others. Even in the early days when you were first starting, when you were learning from others, you were always giving back to others. Thank you so much, Ross. And even though I’m not doing the My Community Manager anymore, I started this year — when I have great timing in everything I do — I was going to dedicate myself to be a full-time speaker this year. Surprise, nobody is having events.
But as I like to say in The Business of Speaking show that I do, and I interview speakers, and it’s really geared towards people who are thinking about getting started in speaking, who are just starting in speaking. As I like to say, if 2020 hasn’t taught us anything, regardless of where we are in our journey to becoming a speaker, we don’t know bleep because life can throw anything at us at any time. So that’s kind of what I am up to today.
Ross Brand: Well, it’s great to see you, Tim. It’s been a while since we chatted. And I just love how you use social media. When I first started, I was watching you and kind of role modeling a little bit. Of course, I wasn’t on as much you were everywhere. I said, “This guy is making it happen!” I can’t go to any platform without seeing Tim McDonald. He’s always good to everybody he encounters, always has a nice thing to say. It’s great to have you on here now.
Let’s get Tim’s prediction.
Speaking Industry Predictions for 2021
Tim McDonald: Perfect. Well, mine might not sound like it’s all that inspiring or revolutionary, but in the speaking industry, obviously, we’ve seen a lot of things go virtual. I think in 2021 we are going to see a merging of some form of live streaming with some kind of in-person events.
Even though this has been done for years, I think we are going to see it done in a whole new way, because we are seeing speakers start to engage so much more on video. How they do that with a live audience and a virtual audience will be the next key that we will see in 2021. But I just don’t want people to think about the audience being virtual and the speaker in-person, because I’ve actually seen already in Australia a virtual keynote speaker with an in-person audience. So 2021 is going to be an amazing year for merging live streaming and in-person events.
Ross Brand: Where can people find you, Tim, if they’re interested in learning more about your speaking business?
Tim McDonald: Well, just go to Speaking.Business and you can learn more there, or you can connect with me on Twitter at @TAMacDonald. I’m usually Tim A McDonald or Tim McDonald just about everywhere else.
Ross Brand: Awesome. Thank you, Tim. It’s awesome to see you.
Tim McDonald is the founder of The Business of Speaking, enabling change-makers to launch impactful speaking businesses. He founded My Community Manager, a resource for community managers, and served as Director of Community for The Huffington Post, including Huff Post Live. In the two years, Tim worked directly on the No Kid Hungry campaign, Giving Tuesday fundraising increased from $56,000 to over $249,000..@tamcdonald shares his predictions for Live Streaming and #virtualevents in 2021. #2021Predictions #livestreaming Click To Tweet
Bee Smith: We had an ice storm and so I’ve been without power for five days. And so this shows you the power of live stream. I’ve been able to teach my classes even though I have no power. So that is why I am coming to you from my car.
Ross Brand: Oh wow. Oh my… So can I ask where you’re located?
Bee Smith: I am located in Oklahoma City. An ice storm just hit us out of nowhere. The electric cooperatives were not prepared. All around me are falling trees and branches. And so you’ll probably see trucks coming to pick them up and it’s just been a deal. I don’t have my background, but I’m not going to miss out on Ross’s fifth anniversary because it was too important.
No Power, No Problem for Bee
Ross Brand: Thank you so much. This is so awesome of you. And I’m glad you’re safe and hopefully, your family and everybody is getting by. Any idea when things are going to come back on?
Bee Smith: Okay, so this is crazy. People on the north part of the city or the north side of the streets have power. And people on the south side, have no power until next week. So my family may be in this situation for another week. It definitely makes you grateful for things that you take for granted.
Ross Brand: Well, I’m glad you’re okay. And we’d love to get a prediction from you for 2021.
Bee Smith: From my car. Some of my best live streams were in my car!
My prediction for 2021. I’m in the educational realm as well as live stream for mental health and humanitarianism. What I see with live stream and virtual meetings is it’s going to be more than a medium of entertainment. When I first came into this game, it was all about entertainment brands spreading a particular message and selling a product. I’m an author selling my book. And I see it moving more to an operational side. We’re going to see live stream and virtual meetings become a critical part of operations for business, personal and education. On the business side, it’s going to go beyond meetings. With customer service, people want to see your face when you escalate a call.
So I see escalations, I see live video being used there, especially right now with people outside of their homes and losing things. You’re going to see more interaction there. On the personal side, with the pandemic, you see it in a hospital. I lost my grandfather to COVID in March. The last time we saw my grandfather was via live stream, in real-time. We were able to communicate with him when we couldn’t touch him. And people just thought this was about people getting behind the camera.
Live Streaming in Education
As an educator, we would not be doing anything without live stream or virtual meets. We can have private breakout rooms for students and we can put them in groups. We’re going to see that it’s just a critical part of the process. They’re going to have to start bringing people in and it’s going to change the workflow. It’s going to change the qualifications of what makes businesses keep going, families keep in contact with each other, and students keep learning. So that is my prediction. It’s more than a medium for entertainment.
Ross Brand: That’s powerful. And I just see this comment just came in the chat that goes along with what you’re saying. Jay Garrett asked if I could put a list together of all the guests with their preferred connection spots or handles because he said he’s been introduced to some new and interesting people. And so that’s what I love about this.
Live Streaming Connections Include Marriages?
There are people who met today and are going to become friends or contacts or maybe business partners or seek out working with each other, whatever it turns out to be. I don’t think I’ve yet had a marriage come out of one of my shows, but who knows? The longer I stay on, by midnight or four in the morning, maybe by then. You do a long enough live stream and people could connect that way. Who knows? I don’t know.
Bee Smith: Hey, we got a Periscope marriage. I am at the wedding. I don’t care who it is.
Ross Brand: There you go. Thank you so much for hanging in there and for being a part of this, Bee. It’s awesome to see you.
Bee Smith: No, thank you for having me. You’ve done so much. A lot of people don’t understand what we do Ross, but look the time is coming. They’re learning how to use it. And people like you have been an influence and not afraid to promote, like with Livestream Deals.
I just wanted to let you know how appreciative I am of you and how you give us a platform to share for suicide prevention, for education, for my books, whatever the case may be. You’ve done that for me and so many people. Happy five years. You da bomb! I’ll send you that recording, you know, with my little makeup, my little background, but I love being in my car because this is the realness. This is what live stream is all about. It’s the realness and people want that. We don’t want the fake stuff.
Ross Brand: This is perfect. This is perfect. Thank you.
Bee Smith: No, thank you. Thank you.
Ross Brand: That is Bee Smith. She is fantastic. Thank you for being here.
Bee Smith has hosted the weekly live streaming show #BeeInspired since 2015, featuring people who have overcome major obstacles on the road to success. She is the author of #BeeInspired: Practical Steps for Living a Life Full of Joy! and Fabulous New Life Volume II. She’s also a speaker, coach and suicide prevention advocate.Bee Smith aka @BeeInspiredTalk shares her predictions for Live Streaming in 2021. #2021Predictions #livestreaming Click To Tweet
Ross Brand: I’m going to bring in Dale Roberts. Dale, thanks for coming in. It’s so good to have you on.
Dale Roberts: Ross, I’m a superstar. Why didn’t you have the green M&Ms ready? And you had me waiting for over 20 minutes, man. 20 minutes.
Ross Brand: It’s unacceptable. It is absolutely unacceptable.
Dale is super generous. He’s giving away three courses. Three, Three.
Dale Roberts: Three, baby.
Ross Brand: Not one, not two, but three courses. DIY Publishing Course. And that’s lifetime, Dale. You’re not fooling around.
Dale Roberts: That is lifetime. And I don’t have that immediately available. So this is not something I just give away normally. It’s a good occasion. It’s five years.
Ross Brand: Thank you again, Dale. That is an awesome and super generous giveaway.
Dale Roberts: It’s so funny. You would think that after watching all these guests, I would’ve formulated just this amazing prediction, but I’m going to continue to go that back to the well as I’ve done previously and look at the platform that is Twitch. Twitch has continued to just exponentially explode over the last couple of years. I’ve said it, and I’ll say it again. And instead of me saying a prediction of “well, Twitch is going to get big.” It’s definitely already there.
Get it Done, Jeff!
For live streaming, Twitch is the place to be. But what I would like to see is that the algorithm actually works, because they have a search engine and that search engine is garbage. It’s a popularity contest. If you can bring in enough people, then you’ll get more people served to you from Twitch.
Twitch is owned by Amazon. Amazon likes money. I know from all walks of Amazon, they like that. So if they could take that algorithm that they use to service their customer base on Amazon.com and move it over to Twitch, Twitch will grow 100 times faster. That’s what they need to really do. So is that a prediction necessarily? Possibly five years down the way. I would like to see it happening in 2021. Come on, Jeff (Bezos). You’re my boy, right? You haven’t returned my calls lately. You think you’ve been hooking us up? Come on, get that algorithm over there on Twitch, because what you got is complete trash can stuff.
Ross Brand: You put your money where your mouth is. You’ve been doing Twitch. You do your podcast on Twitch, which is really cool. And I enjoy stopping in at Noon Eastern on Mondays. You do that little intro when you talk to the audience and then you record your podcast. So you’re putting in the time there, you’re building your audience. You’re doing good stuff there. So, thank you.
Dale Roberts: Thank you. I appreciate the kudos.
Dale Roberts is a leading online expert in self-publishing. His YouTube channel, Self-Publishing with Dale, has nearly 45,000 subscribers and helps authors publish their own books on a budget. A speaker, author of 40+ titles, podcaster and live streamer, he is the creator of the DIY Publishing Course. Dale is also a brand-building consultant for authors.
Ross Brand: We will bring in Margie Annalise. It’s so great to see you. As I said earlier, Margie, it’s been a while and it was just such a thrill to go on that show back in 2016. It was January of 2016 when I was l away and I got this message from Aaron (Kilby): “Hey, would you like to come on our show?” And I was like, wow, somebody wants me to come on their show. And I guess I’ve done a few shows since then.
Margie Analise: Yeah, just a few Ross. Congratulations. Five years is such a long time. It seems like just yesterday that we were on Blab, but honestly, that was so much fun. So much fun.
Ross Brand: It was. And I think we’ve had a little bit of the Blab feel here with so many people on together. Do you have a prediction for 2021?
Live Streaming in Hybrid Programs
Margie Analise: I do. Well, I help female entrepreneurs, coaches and consultants take their business and go online. The main thing I was teaching really all last year before everything crazy happened in the world is that the one thing that people want from you when you put together your program — because I teach them how to do a hybrid program — is they want the human connection.
So what I’m teaching women is how to take a course — that they would just sell without a high-touch feel to it — and use live streaming in it, because people want that human connection more than anything. And I think that’s why we loved Blab so much because we all felt like we were there. We all feel like we’re here right now together, even though we’re not really, but we are virtually. I think that platforms like StreamYard really helped to pull that together. So confession, I haven’t used StreamYard yet, but it’s actually on my list of things to do.
Who’s Zoomin’ Zoom?
My prediction. Number one is I think we’re going to see a surge in independent companies coming up with Zoom-esque-like platforms. There’s really so much potential. So many people are using live streaming now, and taking it away from the cold approach that it’s just a tool I have to use. People are going to start to see it as a way that they can really engage and enjoy. That they can reach people and talk to people they would never have had the opportunity to, like you and I, Ross. It gives us such an opportunity.
People had thought, “Oh, no, I’m not going to do that now.” Not only do they feel like they should, but they want to. And I think that’s the difference. The other prediction is I think we’re going to see an explosion in online entrepreneurs incorporating it into their hybrid programs so that their students can feel like they’re right there with them.
Because more than anything, that’s what people want. Especially since a lot of people have been locked down for a long time and everybody’s going crazy. Can anybody relate? We want to feel that connection with other human beings. And if we can’t do it in person, then this is the next best thing. It just allows for such an awesome opportunity.
And the last thing I wanted to say is — you know what Bee (Smith) said about being able to use it? I think it was her grandfather that passed? One of the last memories that I have of my mom — I hadn’t seen her for a really long time. She was in a nursing home and somebody at the nursing home took out their iPad. And guess what I got to do with my mom? I got to FaceTime with her.
Live Streaming Enables Unforgettable Memories
That memory will be with me all my life. So I think what we’re seeing is how if we can’t be there in person, we can bring that humanness back. We can have those important moments back in our personal lives and also in our businesses. I think we’re going to see such a huge surge in people using it in different ways. People who never would have thought that they would ever use live stream. We’re going to see them not dismiss being in-person because we know that’s the most awesome thing, but (using live streaming) as a really powerful complement to the things that we currently do.
Ross Brand: Wow. That’s powerful. Thank you Margie for that.
Margie Analise: Thanks, Ross.
Ross Brand: Thanks for being here. It’s great to see you.
Margie Analise: Yes. We have to catch up soon. It’s been too long.
Ross Brand: We do. I look forward to it.
Margie Analise helps coaches, course creators and experts grow and scale their online business without overwhelm. My first live streaming guest interview was on a show Margie co-hosted..@margieanalise shares her predictions for Live Streaming in 2021. #2021Predictions #H2H #livestreaming Click To Tweet
Ross Brand: We have Steven Greene. Dr. Greene, let’s get your prediction.
Steven Greene: Well, I’m in the education space. I think you know that Ross, other people may not. I do a ton of online education, tutoring instruction, you name it, and I don’t think we’re going back a hundred percent. The global, national, regional, and local acceptance of virtual education at the school level is there. Not just one-on-one. The door is open. I don’t think we’re going to close it ever, completely. I’ve been teaching online, not full time, but off and on since about 2012-2013 when the technology started to work well enough. It used to be I’d have to convince people you could even do it, that you could actually communicate, work out a math problem, whatever types of things I do commonly.
And that discussion is pretty much a done thing right now. So I think you’re going to see a lot more educational opportunities online. Obviously, people coach online. It’s not a completely new experience.
Acceptance of Live Streaming in Traditional Education
But I’m talking more at the traditional academic level, high school, maybe middle school, college for sure, and I think some of the continuing education things like online MBAs. You’re going to see a lot more because people can now get a lot more access to it. And you’re going to see a combination of live and asynchronous. I don’t even think it’s that bold of a prediction because it’s already happening. What I’m really predicting is that it’s not going to go back to the nonacceptance of it.
Ross Brand: Right. It’s going to be a reality whether we like it or not. And…
Steven Greene: I like it because it helps my business. But I think the technology supports it well enough and the people, the end-users, are open-minded enough to take advantage of it. I think it’s a combination of those things..@makethegrade shares his predictions for Live Streaming & #onlinelearning in 2021. #2021Predictions #edtech #livestreaming Click To Tweet
Ross Brand: Let’s bring Dr. Tachi in. First of all, happy five years to you and MediaScope. It’s definitely not only been consistent, but it’s always been a high-quality show with so many great conversations. You tackle topics I wouldn’t dare tackle. You make it fun and you get your audience involved. And I always learn a lot about, not only what’s going on with tech, but what people think about what’s going on and other ways to think about it. So, it’s an honor to have you on. Thank you for being here.
Dr. Tachi: It’s an honor to be here. I’m so pleased that you asked me here today. Happy, happy, happy anniversary. You deserve all the success in the world and thank you for being a part of the MediaScope family. So I feel like I’m on a family member’s show.
Ross Brand: Thank you. And I feel the same way. What do you think for 2021?
Dr. Tachi: Oh, here we go. Are you ready? Live scripted. Let me tell you why. So we’re talking about the fall of Quibi, right? Quibi missed the mark and they’re gone. But Zoom also did something really interesting called Zoom Where it Happens, where they had a cast of actors who did live table reads of different shows, where they did 227. The one they did this past Tuesday was A Different World. They did The Golden Girls, all of this kind of re-imagined cast-wise, but it did really, really well.
Live Streaming Dramatic Readings
So I’m thinking that because there’s already a lack of content — we don’t know when we’re fully going to get back to real productions — live scripted seems like the next hurdle to come over. So that’s what I’m predicting. We’re going to see some live scripted.
Ross Brand: And so for the audience, will it be more like hanging back and watching rather than as interactive as a lot of live streams are with guests coming in and out?
Dr. Tachi: That’s an excellent question. If we’re talking kind of reality-like talk shows, I see room for the audience to participate, but if they really want to take it up a level, they need to think live Rocky Horror Picture Show. You know how the audience participates with all those types of things. So it needs to be so well-planned and so well-orchestrated that you can involve the audiences at the end of the day. We all know that the main reason that people watch live streams is that they’re participatory. Otherwise, I can just watch regular static, linear TV. So that’s a great question. I do see them trying to find ways to involve the audience.
Ross Brand: Wow. Looking forward to that. Thank you so much for being a part of it, Dr. Tachi.
Dr. Tachi: Absolutely.
Ross Brand: It’s great to see you.
Dr. Tachi: You too.
Dr. Tachi covers all things media, tech and pop culture as the host of MediaScope, a weekly live streaming show that started in 2015. She co-hosts the TV Channeling podcast.She’s an adjunct professor at the University of Maryland and holds a Ph.D. in communications and culture from Howard University..@Tachiada of #MediaScope shares her predictions for Live Streaming in 2021. #2021Predictions #livestreaming Click To Tweet
Ross Brand: It’s great to see you, Brent. And thank you for the generous giveaway from Poddit. It is an awesome website where you can book guests, really connect with guests for your podcast or your live stream show, or you can put yourself out there to be a guest on shows and promote yourself or your business.
Tell us about the Rockstar plan. You’re giving away two of them. What that’s about and why people should be excited about it?
Brent Basham: First of all, thank you, man. This is great and congrats on your new certificate on herding cats. This is quite a challenge for you. I don’t know how you do it. It’s amazing. But great job all the way through.
With respect to Poddit, it’s a way to connect for podcasters and guests or live streamers with guests. The Rockstar account specifically is on the guest side, because on the podcast side it’s completely free. We don’t charge you for that.
Live Streaming & Podcasting Interviews
The Rockstar account does enables you to have higher visibility and make a better first impression. Those two things are key. And the giveaway today is for that upgrade, for life, forever. It’s pretty high value and we’re continuing to add a lot of new features. So happy to support, absolutely happy to support.
Ross Brand: Brent, what do you see coming up in 2021?
Brent Basham: So I’m a little bit in the podcasting space. I did a show called Digital Dads for a while, but I’m going to leave those predictions to the resident expert, Rob Greenlee, for the podcast side. Piggybacking on what Dr. (Steven) Greene was saying though, for a long time we’ve been predicting on our show before we podfaded, that education was going to really be disrupted by technology.
Education Technology To Catch Up
And it’s really one of the industries that’s really been lagging for a really long time. I’m raising the very first digital natives and I’m the very last of the digital immigrants. It’s an interesting point in time. COVID, unfortunately, is the catalyst, but I think what’s going to happen a lot next year is not just live stream, but a lot of innovation and a lot of companies rushing into the technology space.
What can we do in the education plus technology space? How can we integrate kids in virtual sessions together? How can we do virtual field trips and bring in experts in augmented reality and all these kinds of things inside the classroom and at home?
What’s going to happen down the road for this generation is that it’s going to be very normalized for them to utilize technology in some creative, new ways. It’s going to set the stage, I think, for a whole new level of leaders to leverage technology and not be back on their heels reacting to something like COVID. And how can we be proactive and turn this into something powerful for generations to come? So that’s what I hope. I think we’re going to see that starting next year.
Ross Brand: Wow. That’s a good one. Thank you, Brent. And thanks for a really awesome and generous giveaway.
Brent Basham: Oh, absolutely. Thanks for letting me be part of it.
Brent Basham is the co-founder of Poddit, a website that connects podcast and live video hosts with guests. He hosts the Long Tail Success podcast and runs the Poddit Podcast Guest Interview Facebook group..@BrentBash of @getpoddit shares his predictions for Live Streaming, #onlinelearning & #edtech in 2021. #2021Predictions #livestreaming Click To Tweet
Ross Brand: Let’s bring in Dana Bentz from StreamYard. Dana Bentz is the head of marketing for StreamYard. You’ve got that cool new black t-shirt on. When they asked me what swag I wanted, I said, “That is the t-shirt that I want.”
Dana Bentz: I like this one a little bit better, Ross, because StreamYard is a little bit higher. The other shirt we have — I think we’re coming out with all kinds of different merch. But the other shirt we have is the StreamYard duck. And it’s a little bit lower. So half of it gets cut off when you’re on a live stream show. That’s why I think this one’s the best shirt we’ve got.
Wearing Merch When Live Streaming
Ross Brand: Well, it looks great. I can’t wait to get one of those. And I’m sure a lot of people are looking forward to what StreamYard has to offer. So many great features, so much that we love about it. And it’s been perfect for this show. We’ve got 10 people right now lined up in the studio. No loss of quality, whatsoever.
Dana Bentz: I know. Isn’t that great? I’m trying to keep track of all the guests you’re having on this show. Ross, I think it’s so fun that you don’t even have a producer back there with you. It’s just all you. Oh my gosh, what crazy, crazy chaos. But you can do it all. You can do it all with one person and you can have 60, 100 guests. How many guests do you have on today?
Ross Brand: It’s supposed to be 82. We’re not going to quite get to 82, but it’s going to be a good number. But no other platform could I do this with, because if it’s a browser-based platform that tries to make it easy, if it’s not StreamYard, the quality will diminish as I bring on more people. And if it’s a high-cost, high learning curve product, it takes too many people. So only StreamYard could make this possible. I do want to mention that we did a giveaway for StreamYard earlier. We gave away a year of the Professional Plan.
Dana, I would love to hear your prediction for the upcoming year, which is 2021.
Dana Bentz: Sure, Ross. Well first off, I think this is so much fun what you’re doing. This live stream party is such a great idea. You’ve connected so many of these people in the live streaming industry, all these live streaming influencers. So It’s so fun to see us all here in one place. And I know some people are meeting for the first time, but we’re all like, but I’ve known you. I follow your live stream shows. Congrats on the fifth anniversary.
My live streaming prediction for next year is a little bit about streaming in general and how I think a lot of people thought live streaming peaked in March and April when everyone started live streaming. Everyone started a new show and then they thought that live streaming would fade out, or it was just a fad that is going to come and go when we all go back to work or all go out of lockdown.
Live Streaming for Churches
But what we’re seeing at least at StreamYard is that it’s still growing. More and more people are still starting their shows. They’re still deciding that live streaming is the best form of content marketing. Live streaming, podcasting, getting your voice out there, getting your message out there. Streaming just makes that easy to do, especially if you use StreamYard, but I think that’s the way 2021 is going to move. It was Rob (Greenlee) who said that when virtual events go back to being in person, he thinks they’re going to be more of hybrid events. I really think that’s going to be so true because we have a lot of churches who started streaming on StreamYard.
And they were like, “Well, we’re back in church now. We’re with masks and sitting six feet away, we’re back in person, but people still want to watch from home.” They still want to go to these events from home. People don’t want to travel anymore. People don’t want to invest all this money.
Live streaming is such a great way to connect with people from all over the world. You have people from all over on this one show in this one span of — who knows how long we’re going to go for — six hours, 12 hours, but it’s just proven to be such a great way to connect. And I think more and more people are realizing that. So even when we go back to being in person with everything, people are still going to live stream.
Ross Brand: This is so much fun. I really am enjoying this. We’re only getting warmed up. I mean, we’re like what three hours and 15 minutes into this.
Dana Bentz: I don’t know you do it, Ross. You are the live streaming expert.
Ross Brand: Well, thank you, Dana. I’m so honored that you came on and thanks for all the great work you’re doing with StreamYard.
Dana Bentz: Thank you. You too, Ross. Thanks for having me on.
Ross Brand: It’s great to see you. Thanks, Dana.
Dana Bentz is the head of marketing at StreamYard, a live streaming studio in your computer or mobile browser that makes it easy to host stable, professional-looking streams. Dana hosts multiple live streaming shows, including StreamYard Spotlight and Two Cents with Bentz..@realdanabentz of @streamyardapp shares her predictions for Live Streaming & #StreamYard in 2021. #2021Predictions #livestreaming Click To Tweet
Ross Brand: John Pretto, 2021. What’s going on?
John Pretto: Hey Ross. How are you, buddy?
Ross Brand: I’m good. Good to see you.
John Pretto: You remember the award show that we did for Blab? We could do something like that, easily.
Ross Brand: Yeah, I remember that. That was a good time, a long time ago.
John Pretto: Six years, right?
Ross Brand: Yeah.
John Pretto: First of all, congratulations. Ross has one of the most important aspects of doing live streaming: Consistency. 2021 is my 25th year in the streaming media business. We started our company in 1996.
Ross Brand: Wow.
Live Streaming OG
John Pretto: And I’m one of the granddads of the streaming media industry.
Ross Brand: Congrats.
John Pretto: And I’m tired. I want to retire now. So Ross can take over.
Ross Brand: Do I get to inherit your gear?
John Pretto: Yeah, right. [Laughter] My prediction is in 2021 Ross will have another prediction show. So, I’m part of the streaming deal from the morning show of Alex Lindsay. On that show, we talk about all things related to audio and video streaming. It’s a great bunch of guys. You can find us on YouTube. And during that time in March, I became part of this guild. We broadcast every morning. We’ve done 220 shows in a row. We haven’t missed one day.
We started a new company called Talent Pros Live. We’re bringing Las Vegas-style production to virtual events. We have singers and musicians and magicians and all kinds of talent and professional hosts. And we can do the full production for you as well. So we can switch the cameras. We help people with professional audio and video and set design, et cetera.
In our experience, Hybrid shows are really difficult to pull off to make them interactive. The big thing you’re going to see in 2021 is the AI (artificial intelligence) implementation of transactional matching of people that are looking for something at a show, which you could never do in a physical world. And the virtual programs are going to become much more effective in that manner. People are going to see the real value in virtual events. I have five more predictions, but that’s fine. I’m happy to see you and thank you so much.
Ross Brand: Thank you, John.
• By the end of 2021 Zoom’s stock will have fallen 20%. Microsoft will inch closer and closer to Zoom’s functionality with a more feature-rich API. [Since John made this prediction, Zoom’s stock has fallen 30%.]
• Covid vaccines take longer than we think and there is a slow adoption for people to take the first wave of vaccines which slows the return of physical events. In the meantime, virtual events get better and better. They show a better ROI, a wider reach, and are not limited by time and space. The ability to match people at a virtual event becomes much more sophisticated than attending a physical event.
• LiDar on the iPhone and the iPad show promise. The ability to scan an environment and use the LiDar for focusing in low light shows real promise. This sets the stage for AR for Apple.
• 5G Millimeter Wavelength still hasn’t reached mass adoption.
• Additional pressure is placed on the Tech Giants from congress for both Social Media policy and antitrust.
John Pretto is an accomplished, innovative and entrepreneurial technologist with over 20 years of senior management experience in information technology, marketing and operations. He’s the co-founder of TalentPros.LIve bringing Las Vegas-style production to virtual events..@human2 shares his predictions for Live Streaming & #Zoom in 2021. #2021Predictions #livestreaming Click To Tweet
Ross Brand: One of the all-time great hosts since live streaming started, Jennifer Quinn. Jenny Q, great to see you.
The very first show that I ever did, I asked Jennifer to be a guest on the show. She didn’t know me at all, but she said yes. And I think it was a good show for a first show. It’s going to look like it was in the dark ages because I really didn’t really know anything about lighting or video at that time. But I think the conversation was good, right?
First Livestream Universe Guest
JennyQ: Oh absolutely. And Ross, I just want to jump in and say one of the things that everyone should watch you for — you excel at this above and beyond anyone who has ever produced a show — is your show promotion. So if anybody wants to learn how to promote shows, follow Ross everywhere he is, because you’re the master.
Ross Brand: Wow, Jennifer. That’s awesome. And Jennifer, what are you up to these days? The Queen of Blab in 2015, that was the award show that John Pretto was talking about. You won the Queen of Blab. What are you doing with live streaming these days?
JennyQ: Well, gosh, those were good days and I love that you’re doing this. Congratulations. It’s been such a journey with you and I’m grateful for that.
Ross Brand: Thank you.
It’s About the Live Viewers
JennyQ: I’ve just recently launched a new business with my business partner. She is an improv corporate trainer and we thought, wow, what better marriage of skills than to combine improv insights with live streaming. And so we have co-created ImproVideo. We teach professionals how to use improv insights to connect with their audience and attract the right clients.
Ross Brand: That’s great.
JennyQ: I was thinking about not only 2021, but the previous predictions that I have given since the beginning of this. With all the changes that have happened for all of us globally back two, three, even a year ago, video was what professionals and business owners and brands had to do in order to be seen. With everyone now feeling much more comfortable on video because we’re all doing Zooms and video conferencing, there are going to be a lot more content creators.
The theme that will set you apart is not just being seen, but it’s acquiring the skills to make your viewers feel seen. Everyone is hungry to be seen. The broadcasters and content creators who can make their viewers feel seen, heard and validated, are the ones that are going to show long-term success.
Ross Brand: Wow.
Jennifer Quinn (aka JennyQ) is the founder of JennyQLive.com, author of Leverage Livestreaming to Build Your Brand and host of the first variety show on Facebook Live. JennyQ was selected Queen of Blab in 2015. She was the first guest interviewed on a Livestream Universe show..@JennyQ of @improvideolive shares her predictions for Live Streaming in 2021. #2021Predictions #livestreaming Click To Tweet
Ross Brand: Dan, I haven’t talked to you since shortly after People of Video. What’s going on with you?
Dan Currier: I took a little time after People of Video to recoup a bit. I’ve obviously still been doing content on Creator Fundamentals. And I actually just put the first post out today for People of Video 2021. We’re going to do it in October of 2021, so still plenty of time. Now after having learned everything we learned, having had to pivot to the virtual event this past year as well as going through all the logistics of planning everything, because we had everything pretty much in place (for the on-site event), it’s going to allow us to just really attack it this year and have a cheat sheet of everything that we need to do to get ready and make it as great as possible.
Ross Brand: That’s awesome.
Opportunities for Video Creators
Dan Currier: I think with every challenge an opportunity is born. What we’re going to see in 2021, as people start to recover from the challenges that 2020 have shown to us, is the importance of income independence and agility to be able to control your own destiny, so to speak, and have the skills to be able to generate your own income, and not be reliant on that nine-to-five job that we were raised to believe was the way that everybody should move through life.
So I think there’s going to be a massive influx in terms of new and aspiring entrepreneurs who want to learn the skills it takes to have that independence and agility. And that provides those of us who are already in the game a great opportunity to be there, to assist them and give them the skills that they need to transition into what I like to call “your personal freedom” to be able to live life on your own terms and certainly be able to weather the next storm when it comes.
Dan Currier helps people grow and monetize YouTube as the host of the Creator Fundamentals YouTube channel with 73,000 subscribers. He is the founder of the People of Video conference, the Northeast’s premier video marketing event for creators..@creatorfundies of @peopleofvideo shares his predictions for Live Streaming & #YouTube in 2021. #2021Predictions #livestreaming Click To Tweet
Ross Brand: We have Nicole here. Good to see you.
Nicole Sanchez: Good to see you.
Ross Brand: Yay or Nay Nicole is the YouTube channel. Tell us a little bit about what you have as a giveaway, not something we typically give away in the tech area, but something I’m sure many of our viewers would be very interested in, very happy to win.
Nicole Sanchez: Thanks, Ross. And again, thank you for being the wonderful person you are and always being such a great resource. I know I’m just echoing what everyone else has said, but you are loved.
Ross Brand: Thank you.
Nicole Sanchez: Just so you know, in my day job, I do marketing for tech companies. I’m obviously a huge live stream evangelist, but I also have a lifestyle channel on YouTube. It’s probably going to be more for the ladies in the group, but I have a big basket of $300 worth of skincare and makeup products. Woohoo. Just throwing something different in the mix because even you guys could probably still powder once in a while. Make yourself look great for those live streams.
Ross Brand: Sounds good.
[Conversation with other guests]
Ross Brand: I’m going to bring Nicole in for her prediction. Yay or Nay Nicole is the YouTube channel. Check it out.
How Corporations Will Use Live Streaming
Nicole Sanchez: My prediction is that big corporations are going to be using live video more and more, and not just for the typical things like events or interviews. They’re going to be using it more for customer service and ways to reach out to their customers because now that with everything going on, we’ve all become so much more socially distanced. I think people want to see someone’s face more often than they can now. So that’s going to be something that’s really, really important.
And also, about a moment ago, Gord (Isman) was talking about the equipment. Same thing here. I bought the latest, greatest webcam. I think I spent $250, $300. Then my father, who’s actually a college professor, all of a sudden he was given one week to have to do everything on video.
And he didn’t know where to start. He couldn’t find a webcam. He was lucky I was able to guide him through it and make it as painless as possible. But there he is almost 80 years old trying to figure out how to do this. So I think it’s from every single level. There’s just going to be more and more video when you look at the statistics, and what they’re projecting out is just growing and growing. Live is going to become a bigger part of that and companies are going to have to get really savvy about where else they can use it to differentiate themselves in the market.
Ross Brand: Awesome. Nicole, you have some links where people can order (skincare and makeup products).
Nicole Sanchez: I have links to all my favorite things. Yes, definitely. And then I also do have a video that talks about how to look good when you are doing video because we’re all doing more and more of those. People have turned their cameras on. They’re being forced to — so I’ve got some tips on that on my channel, too.
Ross Brand: Good stuff. Thank you, Nicole.
Nicole Sanchez is a marketing consultant for tech companies and the host of the Yay or Nay Nicole lifestyle YouTube channel. She pioneered live streaming at Cisco as host and producer of the company’s Facebook Live broadcasts, garnering 230,000 views in the first five days, and trained the marketing team to live stream.
Ross Brand: I’m going to bring Chris Krimitsos in. I hope I don’t catch you by surprise. Chris, I know you have a live Zoom meeting coming up. So if you want to go ahead and jump on with your prediction.
Chris Krimitsos: My prediction: Spotify is going to double in size by the end of next year. YouTube is doubling up, like two ads per video. You’re going to see money flooding into the podcasting space.
Integrating Mediums: Podcasting and YouTube
And then you’re going to see a lot of YouTubers starting podcasts and a lot of podcasters crossing over to YouTube. I think it’s easier for YouTubers to start a podcast than podcasters to start a YouTube channel, but you’re going to see a lot of integration.
We’re seeing a lot of that. Streaming is very important, but on the podcasting front, money in the billions is going to wash in, in 2021. We’re seeing it happen now with advertising money.
So in case anyone doesn’t know, we started with like two or three million a few years ago in advertising money. Then it hit 10 million, then 25 million, then 50 million. I think this might be the first billion-dollar year. We’re not sure. And next year will definitely be a multi-billion dollar year.
Ross Brand: Wow. Quick question on Spotify. Do you see Spotify opening up video podcasting to everyone? Or will that stay exclusive to the big names and the people they contract with?
Chris Krimitsos: Do we see them bringing in more big names, you’re saying?
Ross Brand: No, I’m saying do you think that you and I will be able to do video podcasting on Spotify? Or do you think that’ll only be Joe Rogan and people like that?
Chris Krimitsos: No, it’s going to be open to everybody. Amazon (Live) video is something to watch and that’s only for influencers that they approve. That’s going to be big for people. But, as far as Spotify, you have to realize they’re making more money off podcasting than they ever did off of music because you could run ads on those podcasts. There’s a lot of money coming through from that. So I do see us all having access to Spotify.
They’re literally following the YouTube playbook. They’re allowing creators to use copyrighted music now in their podcasts, but it’s only for their subscription service, which I believe they’re testing. And then they’ll roll it out for everybody else.
Ross Brand: Cool. Thank you, Chris.
We will see a huge influx of podcast ad dollars flooding the marketplace and Spotify adding to its lead as it starts landing advertisers looking for ears via their platform that is modeled after the YouTube playbook.
Chris Krimitsos is the founder of Podfest Expo in Orlando, the world’s second-largest podcasting conference, and the author of Start Ugly. His online Podfest Global Summit in August 2020 set the Guinness Book of World Records title for the largest attendance at a one-week virtual podcast conference with more than 5,000 attendees. He also runs the VidFest conference for video creators..@chriskrimitsos of @podfestexpo & #vidfest shares his predictions for #podcasting and #Spotify in 2021. #2021Predictions #livestreaming Click To Tweet
Ross Brand: He’s the marketing manager for the United States for Focusrite. They’re the makers of the world’s best-selling audio interface, the Scarlet 2i2. He’s also a podcaster for Focusrite. Dan Hugley, thanks so much for joining us.
Dan Hughley: Hey, thank you for having me. Ross, congratulations on 5 years. That’s incredible. Congratulations.
Ross Brand: Thank you so much. Appreciate the giveaway, that was really cool. You gave away one of the Scarlet 2i2 (audio interfaces).
I want to ask you right away for people who may not be familiar with audio interfaces — because this is something you talk about every day — explain what an audio interface is and why you would want to use one when you are livestreaming, podcasting or creating other types of online audio and video content.
Audio Interfaces 101
Dan Hughley: Sure, basically what an audio interface does is it takes the electric signal that’s coming out of my voice and into a microphone and amplifies it. And it also converts it into a digital form, because our mouth is an analog device, the microphone is an analog device. It converts that to digital to get it into the computer. So it goes from electronics to ones and zeros really quickly.
Then it gets into your computer and you can record onto any platform that you are recording with, whether it’s something like StreamYard — I’m using a Focusrite interface right now to do this, talking through a microphone here. There are a lot of different ones (audio interfaces) out there and we’re the best selling for a reason: They’re really great, very affordable and super easy to use. For podcasters and live streamers, it’s just very easy. It’s not something you have to think too much about. Plug it in and get to work right away.
Ross Brand: Would you like to give a prediction for 2021?
New Audio Technology
Dan Hughley: Podcasting has finally been noticed with Spotify spending close to a billion dollars in the last two years on podcasting-specific acquisitions. That’s huge. We are going to see a lot more professional podcasts and professional live streams. We’re going to see some really cool technology coming in the next year as well from a lot of different manufacturers: microphones, audio interfaces, a lot of different things. We saw that with Shure with their new microphone (Shure MV7), which I’m just itching to try out.
Dan Hughley is the marketing manager for Focusrite, the world’s top-selling brand of audio interfaces. He launched the Focusrite Pro podcast, hosting and producing the first 20 episodes. (Dan delivered his 2021 prediction on an episode of Livestream Deals.).@danhughley of @WeAreFocusrite shares his predictions for #podcasting in 2021. #2021Predictions #livestreaming Click To Tweet
Ross Brand: Toni has been waiting so patiently and she’s such a wonderful person. I cannot wait to bring her on. Tony, how are you? It’s been a while.
Toni Henderson-Mayers: It has been a while. It’s so good to see you, Ross. Oh my goodness. Happy anniversary to you. We go way back beyond the five years. You have been always a super rockstar in the streets of livestream. I absolutely love you.
Ross Brand: Thank you. Tell us what you’re doing now. I see you’re doing some acting?
From Theater to TV & Film
Toni Henderson-Mayers: Absolutely. Before I entered the world of live stream, I owned and still own a theater company. The theater company is about 30 years old. So once I got my two sons back up, I went from being in the theater to television and film. That’s what I’m doing now.
Ross Brand: Wow. Congratulations. That’s exciting. If you have a prediction for 2021, I would love to hear it.
Toni Henderson-Mayers: Yeah, absolutely. Before I got into live stream, as I said, I was an entrepreneur and so Wise Courtship, as you see that book in the back — I’m known as Wise Courtship on live stream — that was one of my brands. I began to utilize that platform to produce different brands. As I got out there, I noticed many of the people who started out in live stream with us have developed their brands and businesses or enhanced what they already had.
Live Streaming TV Channels
My prediction is that many of us who started off in this game together will begin to transfer on to television, cable and live stream TV, which is separate channels where people can live stream. I believe that we’re going to start crossing over and you’re going to see shows produced and done by many of you guys. And I’m not just saying that. I believe that. And I also have some channels and I’m definitely going to be reaching out to a lot of you live streamers to do that. I think that’s the next step.
Ross Brand: Wow. I’d love to hear what you’re working on. We have to chat about that.
Toni Henderson-Mayers: Absolutely.
Ross Brand: Thank you so much, Toni. It’s great to see you.
Toni Henderson-Mayers: I’m so glad I could celebrate with you. Take care, Ross.
Live streamers will begin to merge into channels for a live streaming audience as Netflix or Hulu does. We’ll be able to locate our favorite live streamer among other quality shows and therefore change TV programming as we know it.
Toni Henderson-Mayers is a SAG-AFTRA actor, 30-year owner of the Alphabet Theater Workshop, TV & radio relationship expert and author of multiple books including Wise Courtship: Before Relationship & Marriage Guide. She hosts The Wise Courtship Philosophy Show..@WiseCourtship shares her predictions for Live Streaming in 2021. #2021Predictions #livestreaming Click To Tweet
Ross Brand: Into the center seat, the big seat, the hot seat, comes maybe the finest producer in all of podcasting. Ladies and gentlemen, THE Podcast Engineer, not a podcast engineer, not someone who does podcast engineering. It is podcast engineer Chris Curran.
Chris Curran: Wow. Thank you, Ross Brand. Congrats on five years, bro. You are a true pro. I always appreciate everything you do. You really bring a lot of knowledge to the whole industry.
And I have two quick predictions. I’m going to be quick because I don’t want to hold everything up. So let me know when you want me to give them.
Ross Brand: You can go as soon as you want, but to have a superstar producer like yourself here, if you would like to discuss the weather or microphone technique, we could do a half-hour on that. And if you want to get right to the prediction, that’s all good too.
Chris Curran: Let’s do it. In 2021, more people will take audio quality more seriously, and they really will try to deliver better audio. This literally has been my prediction for the last three years, Ross. And it’s always true because we’re all moving towards better audio.
More Commercials, Please?
My other prediction is that there will be more commercials, which is annoying. I don’t know why on YouTube and everywhere you go now, everyone is monetizing every video and every stream. Anyway, that’s my prediction. More commercials.
Ross Brand: Hey, speaking of monetizing, I now have SuperChat on my channel.
Chris Curran: I don’t mind that stuff, but these ads are killing me, man.
Ross Brand: You’ve got to get that 30 cents from YouTube, right?
Chris Curran: I understand it. But it’s also annoying.
Ross Brand: Yeah. Well, thank you, my friend. I’m so glad to see you, glad you’re here. You’ve been one of my favorite guests over the years and I definitely want to have you back on one of my shows.
Chris Curran: Yeah. And you were on my show, the Podcast Engineering Show, Episode 105.
Ross Brand: Yes!
Chris Curran: So check out the Podcast Engineering Show.
Ross Brand: And I gave you a gift for Episode 100, our most favorite microphone of all time.
Chris Curran: Please, I don’t want to talk about it today, Ross. I don’t.
Ross Brand: We’ll just let it go.
Chris Curran: All right. Thank you, brother. Congrats, Ross Brand. Love you, man.
Ross Brand: Thanks for being here. I appreciate it. That is Chris Curran.
Chris Curran is a professional podcast producer, host of the Podcast Engineering Show and founder of the Podcast Engineering School, preparing students for careers producing and engineering podcast audio at the highest level. He previously worked as an audio engineer in the music business with album credits for artists such as Foreigner, Notorious B.I.G., P Diddy, Itzhak Perlman, Naughty By Nature, Heavy D, Sarah McLachlan, MC Hammer and Ice Cube.
Ross Brand: Carlos Gil, come on in. Carlos from Outlaw Masks. We just gave away three masks. We had three winners earlier when your business partner and brother-in-law Reggie Williams was on. But Carlos, if you have a prediction for 2021, I wanted to get you on and again say thank you for the giveaway and congrats on all the success you’re having without Outlaw Masks.
Carlos Gil: Thank you, Ross. I really appreciate it. I’ve been watching and enjoying seeing all these predictions. So I’m actually going to give you two. I’m going to throw a little curveball out there because a lot of these predictions are very technical around the platforms themselves.
Offline Connections & Events
Quality connections in the real world offline are going to be paramount and could be everything. I think you’re going to start seeing conferences and small gatherings returning. Probably not the big mega-conferences as we’ve seen in the past, but I think the new thing that people will want is to be a part of the VIP experience. So taking these online relationships offline, they’re gonna mean so much more. That’s one. I think two aligns with what I wrote in this book, The End of Marketing, which is the marketing around people being brands.
And I know this firsthand by working with brands directly as an influencer and also as a consultant, that brands are trying desperately in these times to still stay relevant, without coming across as being tone-deaf, without you necessarily pushing their product or their latest campaign.
Creators: Your Next Move
So if you are a live streamer, a podcaster or have a presence or personal brand online, use this time over the next couple of months to align with brands that might be looking to launch a podcast or a show or just watermark their logo on your own existing show. That’s not earth-shattering in terms of a prediction, but I think you’re going to start seeing more brands looking to align themselves with the creator community going forward, as they realize that people in these times enjoy engaging more with people than they do with the traditional logo or a big corporate entity.
Ross Brand: Yeah. And without in-person events, you’ve got to find another way to have those touchpoints with people.
Carlos Gil: Absolutely. Ross, I was going to say if you want to find a couple of people that are watching right now, I’m more than happy to send them a copy of my book, The End of Marketing. A little bonus giveaway. Hope you don’t mind. I know your audience probably doesn’t mind.
Ross Brand: Thank you, Carlos.
Carlos Gil: Thank you so much, Ross.
Carlos Gil is the author of the best-selling book, End of Marketing, a globally-recognized keynote speaker on social media marketing and the co-founder of Outlaw Masks, designed for safety, style, and comfort..@carlosgil83 shares his predictions for #DigitalMarketing & #virtualevents in 2021. #2021Predictions #livestreaming Click To Tweet
Ross Brand: Nancy Ancowitz is here. Great to see you, Nancy.
Nancy Ancowitz: Hi Ross. How are you doing?
Ross Brand: I’m doing great. What’s happening with you, Nancy?
Nancy Ancowitz: I’m so happy to be here. Congratulations on your five-year anniversary.
Ross Brand: Thank you.
Nancy Ancowitz: This is my first time for anything like this, Ross. I feel like I’m a much more subdued person. I’ve been watching your other stuff thinking, “Oh my gosh, it’s really fun.” I’m an introvert. Wow. This is fantastic though.
Ross Brand: I’m an introvert myself, but somehow when the light goes on, I get the energy to do this. But as soon as the light goes off, I need my time to regenerate my energy.
Let me move you into the center screen, Nancy, for your prediction.
Nancy Ancowitz: Maybe these are more wishes than predictions. Let 2021 be a year of listening, of active listening, of attentive listening, in which we’re really paying attention to cues — oral, non-verbal, whatever we can see in the little box, but we’re really paying attention to our audiences.
The second is reaching out to people in a meaningful way. And the third is give and get. We often feel vulnerable when we reach out to our customer base and others in our network, so always do so in the spirit of give and get. And those are introvert-friendly predictions that can help everybody.
Ross Brand: That’s great.
Nancy Ancowitz is a coach specializing in career advancement and presentation skills, an NYU adjunct professor and the author of Self-Promotion for Introverts®: The Quiet Guide to Getting Ahead. She blogs for Psychology Today and used to blog for Salary.com.
Super Joe Pardo: First off, Ross, congratulations on five years. And second off, are you staying hydrated?
Ross Brand: I am. Not as much as I should be, but thank you for the reminder. [Drinking water.]
Super Joe Pardo: Yes, remember to eat and drink, events will do that to you.
Maturation of Virtual Events
Speaking of events, my prediction is that virtual events will find their way into being more streamlined and more mainstream. The way I’m looking at it, 2022 is the earliest we will be getting together at events on mass scales in most industries. So I think virtual events will continue to blossom if not make a huge dent in the universe coming through 2021.
[After more new people join the live event…]
Ross Brand: Just go around and introduce yourself real quick.
Super Joe Pardo: I’m Super Joe Pardo and I am a profit growth strategist for small to medium businesses. I also run the Independent Podcasts Conference, which is sponsoring this event.
Ross Brand: Thank you, Joe, for being here and for supporting this, and just being Super Joe Pardo, super as always.
Super Joe Pardo: You’re very appreciated, Ross. It’s been a pleasure to get to work with you over this crazy 2020 year.
Super Joe Pardo is a profit growth strategist, founder of the Independent Podcast Conference, heading into its seventh year, and host of free virtual conferences during the pandemic. His award-winning business podcast, The Super Joe Pardo Show, has published more than 400 episodes. Joe helps fellow creators grow their podcasts in the Indie Pod University community.
Ross Brand: Angus, we connected at Social Media Week Lima. Man, you are one inspiring speaker. What a great time that was listening to you two years in a row.
Angus Nelson: Thank you. It was great to be a part (of Social Media Week Lima). Jessika (Phillips) runs a good ship down there.
Ross Brand: Yes. You helped me out when I was getting ready to go on and you’re like, “Take the lanyard off, put it in your pocket.”
Angus Nelson: I’ll help you out. I got you. And then right over here, I think is my bobblehead. That’s my bobblehead [a gift for speakers at Social Media Week Lima].
Favorite Gift as a Speaker
Ross Brand: Since I went to the green screen, they don’t show in the background, but I’ve got them right over here as well.
Angus Nelson: It was the best speaker gift ever.
[We come back to Angus for his prediction.]
Angus Nelson: Well, before that, I just want to say that my dad just did his very first Facebook Live this week. I’m so proud of him, but his audio was atrocious and you can barely hear him. So I’m like, “Dad, let me help you.” So good for him. Dad, keep it up.
My prediction: I’ve actually transitioned from the marketing world to becoming an executive coach. I’m focused on people. I work with executive men and I help them implement my conscious design methodology to transform themselves and their leadership, their love, their legacy. So that in context, my big conviction for 2021 is that personal brand is everything in this world. There are two sides to this. There’s the leadership. And there is the employee.
Why Personal Brand Matters
From the employee side, now that there is employment from any location as companies are flexing all of their work from home arrangements, the amount of competition is increasing. And therefore you must assert yourself, your thought leadership, your opinion, and the kind of culture you represent. The second piece of that is leadership. It’s imperative that leaders present themselves both to their customers and their employees so that people know the kind of human being they are working with and the kind of culture they want to create as a company. I think personal brand is the future. And therefore, live streaming is a critical component to all of that.
Ross Brand: That’s awesome. I guess I’ll keep doing it. As somebody with an HR background, I’m glad to hear what you said, because it’s so important. How do you stand out in a sea of a million resumes and LinkedIn profiles? You’ve got to build a personal brand and take advantage of all the assets that you can put out there as Google might be the way somebody decides whether they want to work with you. And it could be that video they found and they said, “Wow, Angus is a pretty cool guy. I think I could work with him and I like what he thinks about what’s going on in the industry.”
Angus Nelson: I think you should work with me,
Ross Brand: I highly recommend it every day.
Angus Nelson is a men’s performance coach, advising high-achieving men to create the life they want through his Conscious Design Methodology™ approach. He hosted the UpInYourBusiness podcast, selected a top 20 business podcast by Inc. Angus is a popular and inspiring keynote speaker.
Ross Brand: Andrew, it’s great to see you. It’s been a while.
Andrew Haley: Hey, I had to come out for the fifth anniversary.
Ross Brand: Thank you. Tell us what you’re doing now. We used to see you on Wirecast Live and live streaming events. What kind of stuff are you doing now?
Andrew Haley: Yeah, I just looked it up. I think you were on episode 77, back in the day, 2018. A lot has happened, but right now I’m working as a contractor, as a product marketing manager, at YouTube.
Ross Brand: Can you tell us what products you’re working on?
Andrew Haley: I actually work on creator tools. So, the backend. I work with the creative marketing team. It’s been really exciting, lots going on obviously. And 2020 has been an insane year. All the platforms are trying to serve creators like yourself with the tools that you need to be successful online.
Ross Brand: Andrew, we’d love to hear your prediction for 2021.
Andrew Haley: I think a lot of these predictions have been spot on. Your last guest Carlos (Gil) really spoke to something about how brand deals and aligning yourself with brands are great ways to monetize for creators. And I think that is where the heart of my prediction lies.
Creator Economy Growth
There’s a really great report that came out recently from SignalFire about the creator economy and my prediction very much follows along those lines. The creator economy is going to double in 2021. I believe that report estimated the current market size of just the brand deals is around eight billion dollars a year. They also mentioned that was just a small piece of the creator economy.
And we’re beginning to see creators find new ways to monetize. Originally it was advertising and monetizing your content, getting those ad dollars. Then it came to individual brand deals and sponsorships on your channel’s content, the hashtag ad, and now we’re seeing tools like SuperChat, alternative monetization streams, merchandise, services. All these things that creators can do outside of their content and their channels like yourself to bring in more income and revenue. We are actually seeing that brings more revenue than the other ways that creators were previously monetizing their content. That’s only going to continue as these tools and features bring additional dollars and make this a sustainable activity for many more people. It’s just going to continue to grow. And I think maybe even double in 2021.
Ross Brand: Yeah, I think we have a consensus from these predictions. Monetization, sales, how to make money from live streaming and how to use live streaming as a key factor in e-commerce seem to be the major themes going on today.
Creator Monetization Options
Andrew Haley: For sure. It’s been really exciting to see it all getting more and more mature. I think one of the nice things about these other ways to monetize, whether you have SuperChats or (Youtube Channel) Memberships, or any of the other ways that these platforms are offering creators to do this, is that it allows the content to no longer have to be more niche, more targeted, more focused. It allows the creators to be more flexible and intentional with the type of content that they’re creating, and not necessarily have to bend backward to fit some sort of a brand or shoehorn it into their content just to get that money because they have other ways to diversify the revenue streams.
Ross Brand: Well, it’s great to see you, Andrew. Thanks for being here.
Andrew Haley: Congratulations on five years. This is an incredible accomplishment. I had to come out for the fifth anniversary, Ross. What you’re doing is amazing. What you’ve been doing is amazing. You’ve built such a huge community. You have a huge fan base and I’m one of them. Thanks for doing what you do and putting this amazing show together. This is incredible that you’re pulling it off all by yourself. So hats off to you and congratulations. Here’s to another five years.
Ross Brand: Thank you. I appreciate you so much and so glad you’re here. Andrew is one of the most decent, honest people that I’ve encountered in the field of live streaming. He’s just an awesome representative and product manager for whatever product he works with. And it’s an honor to have you on.
Andrew Haley: I was honored to be here. Thanks again
The creator economy will double in size in 2021.
Andrew Haley is a contract product marketing manager at YouTube working on creator tools. He previously hosted Wirecast Live in his role as live streaming product evangelist at Telestream. Andrew also served as a product marketing manager at Avid.
Ross Brand: Ani, great to see you.
Ani Alexander: Hey, nice to see you. Happy Anniversary. I know five years is quite a long time to stick to one thing and do it better and better with time. So congrats to you, Ross.
Ross Brand: Thank you so much. What are your thoughts for 2021?
Ani Alexander: To be fair, I have no clue. I don’t remember what I submitted in my prediction. So most probably you’re going to get something different this time. [Ani’s written prediction is at the bottom of her entry.]
Ross Brand: That’s okay. We’ll pick whichever one looks like it’s going to come true when we do the blog post.
Ani Alexander: First of all, I totally agree with Brian (Wallace). I’ve been active on LinkedIn in the past six months or so, and I haven’t had such fast organic growth anywhere else up to now. I totally agree that LinkedIn Live is the place to be. But I feel like with this progression, with COVID, and with everything that is happening in the world at the moment, people probably are looking for experiences.
Audience as Hero
All these separations between podcasting, live streaming and virtual events are going to mashup up a little bit because it’s not going to be one strict format, but something that makes the audience the participant and hero of the story. The storytelling, the mashup of formats, and the participation of the audience will blur the lines between the different formats.
And then you won’t be just a podcaster or just a storyteller or just a virtual event organizer. You will be the creator of experiences for your audiences. It can evolve with time. Seven years ago when I was launching my podcast, most people didn’t even know what a podcast was. We had to explain to people how to listen to podcasts. Now things have evolved. Everyone around us is launching podcasts, but the way we do things at the moment has been around for quite a long time.
Creator of Experiences
The agencies now will be demanding more than just the traditional interview. They will want a bit more than what’s out there at the moment. So people who have been around for a long time have to step up their game rather than just doing a regular kind of live stream or podcast. I’m very excited to see what’s going to happen, but I feel like it’s going to be something very interesting, more entertaining, closer to the audience and more related to relationship building at a sustainable level.
Ross Brand: Awesome. It’s going to be exciting to see how that comes to be. I think you’re going to be spot on.
Virtual events will become a thing… Many will do the regular boring copy-paste of the physical events and bringing them to the online space. But that won’t work well really. The ones who will win at this game will be the ones who figure out how to focus on the experience and make the participant the hero of the story. It’s tricky, but if they manage to make the participant feel special and an important part of the event, instead of being a passive viewer, they will nail it.
Ani Alexander is the host of the Brand Architect podcast with 204 episodes since 2014. She also hosts and live streams the Blockchain Meets Marketing podcast. Ani is the author of several books including Emotional Moments, a number one Amazon Kindle best-seller in UK short stories.
Ross Brand: Let’s bring Marc in. I’m so glad to have you on here. We go back to when you were working with domains, through Switcher Studio and everything else you’ve had going on. Events — I saw you speak in New York and out West. So it’s great to see you, my friend.
Marc Gawith: Likewise. Thank you so much for allowing me to be on. I was a little bit intrigued by how you were going to keep everyone at 10 minutes with four people in each 10-minute segment. That’s a pretty lofty goal.
Looking Behind the Camera
But it’s always good to be here. It’s always good to be a part of what you’re doing. You’ve had a lot of people on that mentioned how they hold you in high regard as do I. We’ve done a lot of shows together in the past, interviews. I’ve been to the same events, so it’s really good to reconnect.
Ross Brand: Thank you.
Marc Gawith: My prediction is going to be a little less about people on camera and a little more about behind the camera. Something that Dr. (Aikyna) Finch said, which really resonated with what I was going to say and where I was going with this, is there are a lot of people that have a passion for video production. And historically it hasn’t been something that’s been accessible to people to do professional video productions, to act as a video producer, especially remotely.
Virtual Producers Wanted
But, with a lot of the platforms that are out there — obviously, Switcher Studio is one of those platforms, and I would be remiss if I did not at least give our company a plug here — you’re going to start to see more and more individuals and companies create opportunities for themselves around virtual events and virtual productions, whether that’s producing a show like this on behalf of Ross, or whether that’s producing a show that they’re also hosting, or producing events, sporting events, conferences, et cetera.
That’s where we’re going to start to see all the growth. Companies that sprout up that are specifically focused on producing live streams or PR videos for individuals, businesses or brands. I’m excited to see what happens. And hopefully, we see an influx of new customers coming over our way as they’re looking for that.
Ross Brand: Sounds good. Thanks for hanging out. It’s great to see you, Marc.
Marc Gawith: Absolutely. Thanks, Ross.
Marc Gawith is the vice president of sales and business development at Switcher Studio, a mobile live video production SaaS company. Switcher, Inc was selected to the 2020 Streaming Media Producer 25, recognizing innovative companies with products for live video producers. Previously Marc pioneered the .LIVE domain and other .com alternatives to the live streaming community as business development manager and live video consultant for Rightside..@marcagawith of @switcherstudio shares his predictions for Live Streaming & #videoproduction in 2021. #2021Predictions #madewithswitcher #livestreaming Click To Tweet
Ross Brand: The great Jim Harod.
Jim Harold: Hey Ross. Happy Anniversary.
Ross Brand: I met you at Podcast Movement. I was talking with Jim Collison and you came up, introduced yourself and said you wanted to talk to me about StreamYard. After we talked about what you can do with StreamYard and how we would connect in the future, I became fascinated with the idea that you are a professional podcaster. And I think I’ve asked you a million questions about what’s life like when you produce podcasts professionally.
Jim, just tell everybody a little bit about what you do.
Jim Harold: Well, I basically produce paranormal podcasts. Great time of the year, by the way. Happy Halloween, everybody. I produce a spooky podcast full time. My two main shows are Jim Harold’s Campfire and The Paranormal Podcast.
I came from a radio background working on the business side. And the closest thing that I can compare it to is I feel like I run a small radio station, but I do pretty much all the jobs. Of course, I have some people help me a little bit with editing. I have a great virtual assistant producer, but in general, I feel like I’m running a little radio station, just updated with a different delivery method and different ways of marketing. But that’s the way I think of it coming from that background.
Ross Brand: Cool, cool.
Podcasting vs Live Streaming Growth
Jim Harold: My prediction for this year: It reminds me a lot of podcasting back in 2005. When I started in 2005, podcasting was all the rage for 2005, 2006. And then podcasting was dead. It was just a fad. It was supposed to be going away, but people like me who were still podcasting were thinking, “It doesn’t seem like it’s going away. Seems like my numbers are growing all the time.” And then you had the hockey stick, right? I think you’re going to see that in live streaming but compressed.
Once the COVID vaccine is distributed, things get better and people return to somewhat of a normal life, we’ll have a little dip with live streaming. Then you’ll hear people say, “Oh, that was a fad. That was just because of the pandemic.”
Live Streaming Adoption Slows and Explodes
But some people will stick with it, keep producing and say, “No, I don’t think it is a fad.” I think there will be a hockey stick as we learn better how to use this medium, how to monetize it and how to serve our audiences.
So I guess I’m going a little bit against the grain. I see a little dip, assuming everything turns back to relatively normal, but then the hockey stick.
Jim Harold is a paranormal podcaster with more than 50 million downloads. His full-time job has been podcasting since 2012. Jim is the author of the True Ghost Stories: Jim Harold’s Campfire series. All five books hit number one best-seller in the Supernatural Kindle category. Jim previously worked as a digital sales director for CBS Radio in Cleveland..@thejimharold shares his predictions for Live Streaming in 2021. #2021Predictions #livestreaming Click To Tweet
Nancy Myrland: I’m here to celebrate you, Ross. Congratulations.
Ross Brand: Thank you. It’s great to see Nancy. I don’t think we’ve ever been on a show together before. We’ve communicated a lot.
Nancy Myrland: Never. We have to do something about that.
Ross Brand: Definitely.
Back on Blab?
Nancy Myrland: You know what this feels like, Ross? This feels like Blab, doesn’t it? it feels like the days when we used to spend hours upon hours talking to one another, which was so much fun. It was that nice window of opportunity that we all had to blaze a few trails here.
Ross Brand: Yeah. I miss that.
Nancy Myrland: Me too.
Ross Brand: There was the show and then there was the after-show when people would just talk. You’d turn the recording off. We’re talking (currently) in front of a lot of people, but it’s still got that friendly feel of friends getting together and chatting. And I wanted it that way.
Nancy Myrland: Well, my prediction is largely the same as what I would’ve said before this year. We have to pay attention to voice and video. Since I work with lawyers mainly in the B2B space, it’ll probably be a long time before I’ll say to forget the written word because I think it’s critical, but it’s becoming even more important to incorporate video. And that’s prerecorded and obviously, live streaming, but also audio.
Connecting with Audio
I talk about this connection continuum. The first is that the written word sort of introduces us to people, gives them a flavor of what we’re like, how it would be to do business with us, what our personality is. When you add audio to it, all of a sudden we start to become more real to people and they get to know us that much better.
When they hear our voice somewhere, they think, “I’ve heard that voice.” Or “I like that voice.” Or “It’s soothing.” Or “You know what, I don’t like that voice.” Then when you add video to the mix — and I’m preaching to the choir here — you’ve opened and combined all of them.
We have to continue to have our clients pay attention to voice and video, but also integrate all of those, not just focusing on video because it’s up here on the connection continuum. Let’s offer all of those in a package to somebody.
Blog, Voice & Video
If you’re going to write a blog post, insert a video into the blog post or insert or a podcast player so people can listen to the content. So I think it’s voice and video, but integrated marketing. It just continues to be really important in my world and in my clients’ worlds.
Ross Brand: And I think voice is probably the most important part of your video if you’re doing anything that’s information-related. If you’re doing talk, ultimately the lights can go out and people can still get the value. But if they can’t understand what you’re saying, if it’s cracking and breaking up, they can only look at the same picture for so long before they say, “Well, I guess I’ll move on. I think I got as much value as I could from this.”
Nancy Myrland: Yeah, I do that all the time. Or if I log into a webinar and somebody’s calling in on their phone, and it sounds like they’re on their phone and it’s not good, I have often disconnected. Of course, we all become pickier as we become better at what we do. And so I’m with you, Ross, when the audio is bad. It’s not expensive to correct it.
Nancy Myrland specializes in training lawyers and legal marketers in social media and content marketing as president of Myrland Marketing and Social Media. She also leads law firms further into the digital space with podcast consulting and video strategy, including live streaming. Nancy is the host of the Legal Marketing Minutes podcast..@nancymyrland shares her predictions for Live Streaming, #VoiceTechnology & #VideoMarketing in 2021. #2021Predictions #livestreaming Click To Tweet
Rob Balasabas: I think in 2021 we are just going to see way more live streams happening. People have discovered it in 2020 as they’re forced to be remote, work online more, and not be able to go to conferences and do workshops and meetups. They’ve been forced to do a lot of live streaming and create a lot of videos.
Live Streaming for Businesses and Brands
So I think live streams will continue to grow and blow up in 2021 for brands, solopreneurs and small businesses. This is a really awesome solution to still stay top-of-mind and be engaged with their prospects, their customers and their communities.
I think that’s what we’re going to be seeing for most of 2021. And I really hope that more businesses, business owners and brands embrace live streams because It’s an awesome way to connect with so many people from the comfort of your home, your dining room or your balcony. I know I’ve seen a lot of friends do live streams from all sorts of places. They’ve grown their audiences in 2020 using live stream. So that’s what I think will happen in 2021.
Rob Balasabas is the partnership growth manager at TubeBuddy. He works closely with the company’s brand and influencer partners and manages the TubeBuddy affiliate program. Rob previously served as social media and community manager at Thinkific. (Rob delivered his 2021 prediction via Zoom.).@rob_balasabas of @tubebuddy shares his predictions for Live Streaming in 2021. #2021Predictions #livestreaming #tubebuddy Click To Tweet
Ross Brand: Hey, I love that setup, Wágner.
Wágner dos Santos: Thank you very much. Appreciate it. I figured I’d do it in my studio.
Ross Brand: You were always conscious of your branding back when nobody was doing anything other than turning on a couple of lights and talking. But your background looks awesome. What do you have going on there?
Live Streaming Studio
Wágner dos Santos: Like Nancy (Myrland), I run an ad agency, so obviously as a marketer, I’m going to want to do it the best way possible. I must admit that I appreciate the compliment, but there were some other people and YouTube videos that I watched on how they had set up their studio. And I thought, “Wow, I can do that.”
So this is my newest studio, actually the best setup I’ve had so far. I have two big LEDs that are mounted on the wall and I have a trust with colored lights. I’m looking at the camera and I have a teleprompter, of course, but I don’t need one right now because you haven’t told me what to say. I’m just ad-libbing. This is what I sound like when I don’t have a teleprompter.
Ross Brand: Think you could handle a two to three-sentence prediction (without a teleprompter)?
Wágner dos Santos: I practiced really hard. I went through the dictionary and I went through all the words.
Predictions. We’ve been doing a lot of research as an agency on COVID-19, its effect on business, the new normal, and even a section of our website where we’ve been guiding prospective and new clients. My prediction has a lot to do with everyone’s direction moving forward.
Brick & Morter vs e-Commerce
People who were not e-commerce people, who preferred brick and mortar, have learned the e-commerce ways and it’s going to be very difficult to switch them back. That’s a great thing in one way, but it’s a bad thing in another way. For those who only know brick and mortar, to stay relevant they’re going to have to learn how to translate their business into e-commerce.
That’s one part of the prediction. The other one similarly is video streaming meetings instead of in-person meetings. Of course, we adopted remote working about a year and a half ago. We were a little early. I decided that we had people commuting two hours back and forth. They have families. And then I thought, “Well, we’re very technologically advanced. They can do a lot of their stuff from home. So why don’t I have them do that?”
Going Remote Pre-Pandemic
Traditionally companies don’t like remote working because they don’t trust their employees, but I trust my employees. I know I hired great people. And guess what? You guys have all heard this. Productivity went way up, people work harder, and they love it. Of course, it was very convenient for what’s happening now. So for those companies that are only now experiencing the benefits of remote work, it’s going to be very difficult to go back to an office environment.
If they’re smart, and I’m not saying I’m very smart, but I’m saying if they’re smart, then they’ll do as I did, which is take that money from — and I don’t know how familiar you guys are with ad agencies, but they try to make a rule of fun, put in a lot of pinball machines and games and all that kind of crap. Sorry. My feeling is clients want you to work. They don’t want to see a bunch of young kids out of school playing games while they just gave you tens of thousands or hundreds of thousands of dollars.