Carl-Erik M. Moberg, co-founder and CSO of TicketCo, discusses the importance of focusing on ease of access when delivering a virtual or hybrid live event.

We live in a digital world dominated by the luxury of instant-access.

It applies in many areas of life – the way we digest news, films, purchase goods and interact with our family, friends and colleagues. Rapid advancements in the technology we use daily has accelerated an extraordinary demand for instant results at the push of a button or a swipe.

But what impact has this had on the online broadcasting and streaming sector and how should the events industry adapt to meet customers’ digital demands?

Studies of user habits clearly demonstrate it is critical that companies that distribute their valuable content online must meet the high demands of the modern-day consumer for a smooth user experience.

Digital audiences will not accept a slow, confusing, or fragmented service. They expect instant access and an easy user experience at the touch of a button.

A recent Nielsen Total Audience Report into the importance of video streaming attributes revealed a platform’s ease of use were of greater value to the customer than the availability of content and playback quality.

Event organisers rightly invest a lot of time and money into ensuring their productions are great and they are marketed well but it is imperative they do not overlook the digital experience.

People do not want to have to set up multiple accounts, passwords or wait to receive a link to a stream an hour before a show getting stuck on their mobile phone or laptop.

It is their leisure time, and they want it to be relaxing, entertaining and enjoyable. The smoothness of their customer journey is key to success and retaining the audience.

Netflix is a great example of the importance of delivering digital simplicity. It has established itself as one of the world’s leading over-the-top content platforms, having started life as a DVD rental service in 1998 and then pivoted.

Since 2000, Netflix has grown its subscriber base from 300,000 to 167 million by adapting to customers’ demands. In 2010, you could watch Netflix through a Playstation, an Xbox, or Apple device and by 2014 you could stream your favourite shows via Amazon’s Firestick. Now 70% of Netflix is consumed on a TV. It has transformed how we watch TV and ultimately ended the analogue era.

Event organisers who are expecting their audience to buy access to an online broadcast of a show or performance have to consider how the customer journey looks from payment to viewing.

Is it easy to consume the content being produced in a simple way on their TV? If not, they run a real risk getting bogged down in support requests with annoyed customers that are not able to view the content. Great content then becomes lost in a bad customer experience.

There is a misconception that a lot of people watch streamed services via tablet, desktop of mobile device. They do not. It makes sense when you think about it.

People have invested a lot of money in large TV screens and speakers to provide a great user experience. They want to watch their favourite shows on their big screens.

Covid-19 triggered an awakening in the events industry to the vast possibilities online broadcasting provides.

At TicketCo Media Services, we invested significantly in ensuring we created a pay-per-view online broadcasting solution that meet the demands of the digital audience.

Launched in response to Covid-19 to help event organisers continue to perform, engage their audience, and generate revenue it has been well received by the market.

It ensures ticketing and online broadcasting, both live and on-demand, are delivered via one platform and crucially the content can be viewed on any device in HD quality. We call it pay-per-view made easy.

This year has been a challenge for the entire events sector but innovation and technology has been one of the few great shining lights amid many dark days. Covid-19 triggered an awakening in the events industry to the vast possibilities online broadcasting provides.

We believe 2021 will see a rapid growth in organisers fully adopting online broadcasting. The audience is digitally savvy and insatiable for content, and those who take their digital journey and experience seriously will be successful.