By Brian Duerring, CEO & Co-Founder of StreamSpot
Video streaming has the power to engage audiences no matter where they are. In recent years, we’ve seen live and on-demand
video streaming make its way into the house of worship community. It’s increasingly used as a vehicle to both extend reach and more deeply connect with key audiences across a broadening universe of connected devices.
Streaming worship services creates engaging, impactful experiences for the entire congregation by including those who cannot attend regular services for many reasons. It also provides access to a diverse range of archived sermons, programs, and other content. In short, video streaming brings spiritual messages to life.
In this fast-paced world where smart phones and tablets are easily accessible, why not cater to your audience by offering access to your message anywhere? With the right streaming platform, you are able to reach a remote congregation on the devices they are most comfortable using in a way that is simple and cost-effective for you.
I’m the co-founder and CEO of StreamSpot, an all-inclusive streaming solution for churches, synagogues, and events. Building a streaming solution that meets all of the needs of our customers is a balancing act that we’ve become accustomed to handling. We began working with video streaming in 2010; however, we encountered challenges along the way due to the limitations of streaming servers. Intensive development work was required in order to achieve the functionality we needed to deliver high-quality streaming services to our customers.
That’s when we discovered Wowza Media Systems, a software and cloud-based services provider that addresses the complexities of high-quality video and audio streaming for organizations. Through the process of finding the right media server software, Wowza Streaming Engine, on which we build our solutions, we realized the top four key components that are necessary to successfully live stream an event.
- Automated live broadcasts: Our patent-pending automation software is used in conjunction with Wowza Streaming Engine to provide a fully automatic, hands-off streaming solution. Using StreamSpot Sync™ a live broadcast automatically starts and stops based on each customer’s streaming schedule. This technology is game-changing for institutions without onsite media staff or those who are prohibited from using technology due to religious observance.
- Automatic archiving of live streams for instant video on demand after live broadcast: This crucial feature makes it easy and simple to save video streams for future use including on-demand playback, editing and distribution of other mediums like DVDs and podcasts. This is especially helpful for houses of worship with smaller media and IT teams, freeing them up to focus on other tasks, and allows congregations to watch and/or listen based on their schedules.
- Simple distribution to any device:A built-in transcoding functionality, such as the feature Wowza Media Systems provides, allows the ability to stream content to any device – including previous-generation cell phones, smartphones, tablets, streaming devices such as Apple TVs or Roku, laptops, desktop computers and more. With the rise of over-the-top (OTT) content, integrating with these devices is key to staying up-to-date with the changing streaming technology landscape.
- Easy-to-manage features based on viewing habits: Every audience is different. Being able to offer a customized and easy-to-use interface goes a long way in smaller organizations, such as houses of worship. Built-in monitoring and detailed logging allow organizations to see viewer habits and fine-tune broadcasts for a richer worship experience that viewers can participate in right from their couch or wherever they may be!
With a high-quality streaming solution, houses of worship are empowered to present richer and more dynamic experiences for followers, while reaching a virtually unlimited audience outside of their facilities.
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