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October 18, 2017
JIM NAPRSTEK: Thank you, everyone, for tuning in today. It's a pleasure to be here alongside Kelvin. We're very excited to talk to you a little bit about how we've had success on our respective campuses and how we think you might be able to take that next step forward with your live streaming. We've got some really good content, at least we think so, and a few tips that we want to share with you.
We're going to go ahead and get started right away, and let's talk about our different streaming platforms.
Kelvin and I are going to kind of play off each other. We've had some experience with multiple platforms, and so we'll kind of be going back and forth. As a reminder, if you do have questions, you can go ahead and send them through, and our staff here helping us with the webinar will make sure that we see those.
Right off the bat, let's talk Sidearm. At Loras College we switched to Sidearm streaming prior to the 2016-'17 year. Prior to that we were with Stretch, and I'll talk a little bit about that here in a few minutes. But with Sidearm, you're looking at between $3,500 and $4,000 a year, and that comes with the high-definition. You'll see in some of the later platforms that we talk about, the HD streaming isn't included, and you have an additional fee on top of that.
Also, I do want to say a quick side note. If some of these prices are a little bit different for you, that very well may be. This is the information that we were able to gather, so if you've been quoted different prices, hopefully in the lower, not necessarily the higher, but we're going off the information that we were able to gather.
With Sidearm, like I said, you have the $3,500 to $4,000 range, and you get your high definition right off the bat. If you wanted to just go the audio route, depending on your setup, Kelvin found that that was free, and you could also charge viewers to watch your streams. We've seen that on a number of different platforms.
If you have the mobile app through Sidearm, you can also watch live events through that, as well, instead of going through a traditional web browser. You can stream directly through the app. Kelvin, I'll throw it back to you and see what you have to offer on Sidearm.
KELVIN QUELIZ: Well, guys, I'm a month into my new position at New Orleans, and here we use Sidearm. We use Sidearm for live stats and video and audio, as well. So you can actually embed the live stats into the video, and if you have any questions, let me know. You can feel free to reach out to myself or Jim on Twitter, email, or cell number. I know most of you guys have our cell number, at least one of us.
But the way that we found that we can enhance our stream is by using Sidearm to have all three options. The reason being is just one click. So if you click on watch, you can see the live stats, you can see the audio, you can see the video, you can see the Southland Conference YouTube page, you can see our YouTube page, so it just made it a lot easier to make it a one-stop shop.
And in saying that, again, with the pricing, it would depend on if you decided to give them some sponsorship. There's ways to add commercials for the video stream, there's ways to add ad spots on the lower thirds and things like that. If you got a lower price -- hopefully you did, if you got a different price. But if you got a lower price, those are things that vary on there. But it's very simple. Here we do a one-camera setup, and we'll touch on how you can enhance that later on, but using Sidearm that's how we do that.
To touch base on Box Cast. Box Cast they give you three different options; you can do the flex plan, you can do the half and half, or you can do just the free unlimited SD and HD options. These are the pricing that we can find; again, those will vary on if you have ad spots and things like that. So $3,700 for the year is unlimited, so you can stream anything from your Hall of Fame to your banquet, graduation, you can stream as many games as you want, a coaches' show if you have it. And then the flex plan is $990 a year, that's free SD, pay for HD, and you split the profit with Box Cast. The good thing about doing is free is you can simulcast it, so you can send it, and I can show you later on how to do that. You can send it to Facebook and YouTube, and then that way you get more viewers, obviously, because you're sending it to different places.
However, if you do the paid option, you can't do that, and it makes sense why you shouldn't be able to because then what do you do with fans that can just watch it for free on Facebook if they did pay for a season subscription.
Go ahead, Jim.
JIM NAPRSTEK: And I did forget to mention, the one thing that was attractive to us with Sidearm is I've got enough -- and I'm sure everyone else on this webinar right now can attest, we have enough going on during our regular week, when it comes to adding the live events for us to be able to stream, when my team submits their schedule, I can select all their home games at once and do a batch add of events because everything is already on the same platform. Sidearm knows the game date, the game time. You can set it up so it can start 15 minutes before and run three hours, whereas when we were on another platform, it was -- you had to add every single game, and it didn't necessarily pull in a logo database and things like that.
Sidearm kind of for us, the big thing was having everything under one roof.
Moving right along, Stretch Internet. This is who we started with, and at Loras, we had -- I think we started live -- this was before my time here. They started live streaming in 2009, I believe, and it started with an SD feed just like basically everyone else in Division III at that point, I believe, and the price that we were paying was $4,000 a year, and then when I came to Loras, we were able to upgrade our cameras, and then we were tacked on an additional $1,000 for the high-definition upgrade.
With your subscription each year, you get a Wire Cast license that allows you to have it on two computers, and just recently Stretch Internet launched a mobile app for their live streaming. I know in the Iowa Conference, where our school is located, they just added this to their repertoire, so I'd be curious to hear if any other schools have taken advantage of that and what their experience has been. But I know that's brand new for Stretch, and it's something that I have not seen firsthand, but I do know that it's out there.
KELVIN QUELIZ: So with Stretch Internet, again, with the things that they do offer, there are ways that you can do everything all at once, so you can do -- you can have a live stats portal there, an audio portal, as well. If your conference has a subscription with it, then you can also see their digital network. So for instance, the RMAC has YouTube so you can see the RMAC Digital Network -- not YouTube, Stretch Internet, so you can see the RMAC Digital Network on every single of their universities' platforms because of that reason.
So it would depend on what your conference uses. Our best advice, and we can go into questions later on, but our best advice would be to just talk to whoever is in your conference to see what they would recommend because obviously the more that you use the same, the more consistent it looks and the more publicity you can get because your conference office can also help you with the highlights and take things directly from your website.
JIM NAPRSTEK: We've had one question so far. Is Sidearm streaming available to clients that use other CMS providers? I've got a message into Sidearm to get confirmation on that. So if I get an answer, we'll loop back and make that available to everyone.
We're going to continue moving right along. YouTube, Kelvin has had a little bit of experience with this, so I'm going to let him take the lead because we at Loras, we have not done any streaming through YouTube.
KELVIN QUELIZ: With YouTube, and I can do YouTube and Facebook Live, and again, if you have any questions feel free to drop them there, if you want to send it through the webinar or send it to us later on we'll be glad to help you out.
But with YouTube you can stream for free. You also have the YouTube Red option. However, there are limitations with it. Number one, you have to create your own lower third, so if you don't have experience creating it, then you'll have a little bit of difficulty trying to do that. You can be as basic as you want or you can try to make it the most amazing lower third that you can possibly have.
As far as the guidelines go, though, just be wary, and we have slides that assist with enhancing your stream, be wary of the music. YouTube is very, very strict on the music that you use, so if you're using music that was taken or ripped off one of those sites that we use a lot for walk-up music, most of us use it for baseball, basketball, warm-up and all that stuff. If you use those, YouTube can mute you. So if you're only streaming from YouTube, you have to have somebody consistently look through it just to make sure that your stream is still there. The last thing you would want to do is just have a broadcaster and have a crowd mic if you don't have a broadcast going on with it, and next thing you know it's just the game itself and it's on mute because that's just going to draw people away from watching it.
And then with Facebook Live, again, there's good and bad with that, as well. Obviously there's a free option, and you get the live notifications from fans, somewhat similar to some of the questions that we receive here while we're doing this, but you are limited if you only use Facebook Live. So if you only use Facebook Live, you only have 90 minutes. So if you think about that for basketball, you might go maybe three quarters for the women and maybe a half and maybe 10 minutes into the second half for the men. So just be wary of the time frame that you have with those free options.
Obviously the more that you pay, the larger amount that you can have, but later on we'll talk about how you can simulcast and how you can send it through a third-party streaming service, and then that way that might offset some of that because if you send it from a third party you don't have the time limit.
JIM NAPRSTEK: For us, Facebook Live, we only as a backup had to use it for a game. We typically use it for our post-game interviews, and then if I'm on the road with the team, we'll use Facebook Live there. So I haven't run into that 90-minute because the day that we had to do a game was last January, and if there was a limit, I don't recall. I think what we had to do was then just stop our stream and then start it again.
Just as an update, I did get a confirmation from Sidearm. If you are not a current Sidearm website provider, you can use them for your live streaming. I did get confirmation from them on that, so if there's a specific school that is interested in that, feel free to shoot me a note and I can get you in contact with the streaming staff that I work with, and that was something I didn't realize.
Again, if you are not a Sidearm website provider and you're interested in their live streaming, you can take advantage of that.
And then the other question we've gotten was what do you search for in the app store to see the Stretch Internet app. First of all, it's not a -- I guess I misspoke earlier. It's not a traditional mobile app, it's an Apple TV, Amazon Fire and Android TV app, and it looks as though it's branded for the individual entity. The Great Northeast Athletic Conference has this, and you search Great Northeast Athletic or GNAC on the Apple TV store, Amazon Fire or Android TV platforms.
I personally have not used this yet, but it's something that I'm going to be testing out here very soon.
Okay, moving right along, Blue Frame, which is for those of you that have been around, may have heard of Volar Video, so Volar Video went under, and there was one or two members from that Volar Video staff that wanted to keep pursuing and maybe go a different direction, and that's how Blue Frame was started. Blue Frame is probably of all the different platforms that we're talking about today the newest, and Blue Frame comes with a price tag of $99 a month for the high definition, and that includes your Production Truck license, which I'm going to be demoing here in a little bit. But Production Truck has a $495 value, and you get that included with your streaming service. So just some quick math, that's 100 times 12, and that's $12,000. Am I doing that math right, Kelvin?
KELVIN QUELIZ: Yeah.
JIM NAPRSTEK: I personally haven't used Blue Frame. I know there's a Division II conference out there that uses it, and when you go on their website, you can see a lot of their examples. Blue Frame, like I mentioned, still pretty new and still kind of getting the hang of it, of what they're kind of -- how they're going to fit into this market.
And then Live Stream, I know a couple different schools in our area use it. Wartburg College uses Live Stream, and I believe Kevin Juday at Elmhurst uses Live Stream. I may be mistaken on that. But Live Stream, it was kind of tough to figure out, not being a client, where we would fit in. You're looking at anywhere from $42 a month to $799 a month, so a pretty wide range there. The $799 was probably a lot more than what any school would need, and then I think for most schools, so like myself, if we were looking at Live Stream, we were looking in that $100 to $200 a month. Kelvin?
KELVIN QUELIZ: Yeah, and with Live Stream -- again, these are some of the streaming platforms. We don't touch on all them, and we do list it later on, but if you use something different let us know. Blue Frame, I know the MIAA uses it as a conference, so if you have any questions you can reach out to anybody in that conference, and I believe it started this year, but with Live Stream and other examples like You Stream, it would vary on how many events you want to stream. I believe if I'm not mistaken, you'd fall around, like Jim said, around the $100 to $200 range a month depending on what you want to do, but if you have special events that you want or if there's a way that you can work with your university or marketing or communication or what have you, if you guys can split the cost if you do have Live Stream, they can use it for graduation, they can use it for certain special events, whether it's a president's speech or whatever the case is, a luncheon or what have you, and that will limit your costs.
JIM NAPRSTEK: All right, we're going to continue right along, and we're going to talk a little bit about in-game highlights. Both Sidearm and Box Cast through their CMS, content management systems, allow you to clip highlights or play during and after a live event, so Kelvin, I'm going to let you take the lead on this one and I'm going to switch this over to your screen if you're ready.
KELVIN QUELIZ: Yep. All right, guys, so I'm going to show you my screen and show you guys how to clip highlights on Sidearm and how to clip them on Box Cast, and I would assume that those that use it know how to set up a game, but if you need to know that, then let me know and I can go through that with you at a later time. But one of the examples that you can see here, and Box Cast is what we used at Kingsville. I've been here a month, again, so if you look at past broadcasts, everything that we've streamed throughout the year is on there, and these are just the viewers just on the URL alone. That doesn't show the viewers on Facebook or YouTube, but you can push every broadcast through those. So I'll show you the upcoming broadcasts. If you click on let's say volleyball, down below here, you can click on edit broadcast, and this shows you -- so we have two Box Casters, and then you also have the app that you can download, and that's what it's called, Box Cast broadcaster. So if you have an audio only or you want to do certain things, if you want to do certain things, you can look at that, and as we go on -- we've got a comment brought in that Facebook is now at a four hours limit, so thank you for qualifying that. So it's four hours, so you should be able to stream some games through there, unless you run into some five-overtime games.
So we have two Box Casters and we have the app so you can choose which one. The easiest way of doing it -- and the reason it says offline is because both of them are off. As soon as you turn it on, and Box Cast is very small, three lights are green, you'll see it'll say online, you click on that one and you just make sure you're sending it to the right thing. The schedule is pretty basic. We always start it to start 15 minutes before, and so over here, this is where you get to choose if you decide to buy a scoreboard -- an adapter for the scoreboard, then you can switch it here, so it depends on what your scoreboard is. Kingsville did not buy it, so usually their boards were Daktronics, but they didn't buy it so we just did manual. But if you have Daktronics, if you choose Daktronics, then it'll ask you for the make and model.
For home team, away team, you can only put max four letters, so just talk to your opposing teams and see what they want, and then the video overlay you can do the top or the bottom. And I'll show you why, right now it's at the top, but I'll show you why we always switch it to bottom. The broadcast type, usually what I did before the season started, I used to do private and test just to make sure. Public makes it public, obviously for everybody, and then ticketed would be if you pay. So you won't have the public option if you decide to do a flex plan only because ticketed would be free SD, pay for HD, and then the channels we always send everything to athletics and then we send it to a specific sport, so that way we can filter out through there.
So here, and I'm logged out of there, obviously, but if you click on show social media broadcast settings, all you have to do is click on this and click on this and put in your credentials, and you'll be able to send it directly to Facebook Live and YouTube Live.
So I know some of the questions that I received were how can you do multiple events on Facebook because we were one of the schools that did do multiple events, whether you had basketball and volleyball or -- not volleyball, basketball and baseball going on or baseball and softball going on at the same time, that's how you do it. You're pushing it through the third party. Again, just be wary of YouTube.
Since we're on a time constraint here, I can show you the back end of Sidearm, so this is Sidearm here. These are the media files for the past games. So if you see all these past games here, it's very simple to clip highlights. You can do it during the game or you can do it after, so you can either download the entire event or you can just click on clip. On the right-hand side it shows you -- scroll down, you just play with that to show you the time, but here you can see how long it starts and ends, so you can just play around with this and figure out what you want to clip. Once you have it set for yourself or whatever you want to post, you just click on download MP4 here, and you can post it directly on social media, which the benefits that we've seen with that have been obviously that you have more content coming out and it's more video content, it's raw video, you're not posting it two or three hours after the game. Obviously with that, that means you have to have a certain type of student staff or if you have assistants that can help you out with that, or if you're familiar with new media, then you can do that, as well.
Here right now it's just me, and (indiscernible) does PA for us, so if we're able to outsource either stats or something else, then I do it. If not then I would tell a student intern how to do, and she's very good at just clipping the quick highlight that we need and then just posting it on social media, and again, you get more bang for your buck doing that.
So Jim, I'll send this back to you.
JIM NAPRSTEK: Okay. All right, so I'm going to just give a quick demo here on Production Truck. This is our second year using it. So as you can see here, this is kind of how it's all laid out. You can have up to four different camera sources, but really what I'm going to be looking at today is the live highlight capture, so to set that up, once you have your camera source, you just enable your replay in here, and then the big thing is you want to connect a social media account.
So this can be -- you can do a Facebook page or I guess your own personal Facebook, or you can sign into any Twitter account. The additional options down here, if you have a Slate or a Bum that you want to throw on there, you can add that video file here, so if you've got a wordmark or watermark that you want in the corner, you can add that there, as well.
So really I think it's pretty simple, so I'm here, I'm talking, I want to highlight, I click this button, capture replay. All of a sudden, I need to be streaming, and it's going to pop upright in there, and then I'll just demo with an example video here. So this was from a recent game. So now if I want this to come into my stream, I can trim this down, okay, and let's flash that in. You can see over here it's now showing in my screen, on my traditional broadcast, then it's going to flash back.
Where that social comes into play, I tap this button right here, and it does a little bit of a suppression to that video file, and now I can tweet Production Truck replay demo, CoSIDA hashtag, and I'll hit post. Confirm? You always want to double check what you're saying. Hit confirm, and now if you were to go to my Twitter because that was the account I connected it to, you'll see that highlight clip from this game.
I've tried the Sidearm back end, having this built right into my streaming software. It makes it really easy. Personally I couldn't tell you the last time I was the one doing it. I'm pretty fortunate here at Loras to have a really, really solid student staff, and now not so much, but last year when we first added it, I had students who had done the Wire Cast option and now the Production Truck, and they all told me that Production Truck was a lot easier for them to use.
Now, granted, I haven't used Wire Cast now in two years, and I know obviously technology is always improving, but for us Production Truck has been a great addition to our setup. What I just showed you is a small fraction of everything that it does.
Once again, I know we're trying to keep this moving along, so if you want more information on Production Truck, feel free to reach out to me. I'd be happy to just go more in depth when we have the time.
With that, I'm going to come back to our presentation and keep moving along.
Box Cast, okay, we talked about that. Stretch Internet.
All right, so the last thing we kind of want to leave you with is five ways that you can upgrade your live stream for under a price tag of $250. These are individual, under $250. If you buy everything that we mention here, obviously it will cost you more than $250, so the idea is if you only have a set amount of money, what are some different things that you can add today that are going to make an impact.
And I mentioned this in the SIDA chat on Monday, a shotgun mic for your stadium sound. I can't broadcast every single game that we have, and I don't just want a muted live stream, so what we do is we run a shotgun mic down -- it's actually mounted. We have an overhang over the stairs that lead into our stadium, and we mount the microphone there and then run the XLR cable to our streaming booth, and now even without broadcasters, if you're watching our live stream, you can hear what's going on.
Some of the main concerns that people always mention are, well, what if you have fans that are cursing and swearing. I guess knock on wood, we haven't run into that issue yet, but even if we did, it's one of those -- if that was happening on a game day, we would probably end up bringing that volume down and having our game manager go and talk to that fan.
For us, though, even with a broadcaster, it provides a really nice complement to the rest of the stream when you can hear on a goal, the players on the field celebrating. You can hear some of the stadium music, things like that.
KELVIN QUELIZ: And especially when you have certain schools that don't sell spots. So you're not going to commercial, you're not adding anything. So you're just staying on the court or on the stadium, so in between time-outs your broadcaster is not reading anything, so at the very least with the crowd mic with that stadium sound, it gives somebody something to listen to and it's not just muted for a minute and a half if it's a media time out, and then you just come back and it's still the broadcaster speaking again.
JIM NAPRSTEK: Right, definitely, Kelvin. So now with this shotgun mic, for those of you that are familiar with the AV world, this is no Sennheiser. We actually at Loras, we own this shotgun mic, and it's not going to blow you away because the high-end shotgun microphones are $400, $500, $600. It's kind of one of those you do get what you pay for, but for what we use this shotgun mic for now as our stadium sound, it's fantastic. It gathers enough sound without being overbearing, and there's a really nice addition to our live stream. So for $90 and an XLR cable, which those range -- depending on your setup, you're probably looking at another $25, if that. That allows you to add some natural sound or some stadium sound to your broadcast.
Way number two: Now, there's multiple versions of this depending on your camera setup, but a zoom rocker, and what this allows your camera operator to do is with the rotation of their thumb joint, they can zoom in and out. They don't have to be reaching forward and searching for a rocker on the camera. They can keep their hands on the tripod and zoom in and out with their thumb.
For us it makes a huge difference. It allows us, gives us the flexibility to zoom in and out without having to disrupt the rest of the stream because it's a much smoother process. VariZoom makes a number of different models. You're looking at 76 bucks and some change, plus your shipping, and this for us made a big impact right off the bat. It clamps right to the tripod handle, and I would say most cameras that I've seen schools using for live stream have a plug-in to have something like this, so just make sure you find the model that works for your camera.
KELVIN QUELIZ: One quick note, guys, this only works on Canon and Sony, so if you have any other camera and you want advice on what you can add, just reach out to Jim or myself and we can help you out with that. But again, this model, this exact model, only works on Sony and Canons, and the newer ones, I believe. I don't think it works -- if you have a camera that's five or six years old, I don't think it works on those. I may be wrong --
JIM NAPRSTEK: Correct.
KELVIN QUELIZ: But I don't think it does.
JIM NAPRSTEK: And I've seen these with Panasonics, JVC's, so a lot of your -- a lot of the cameras, like I mentioned, that are being used today have this port that this rocker plugs into. It's just a matter of finding which one works specifically for your setup.
HDMI on-camera monitor. To a lot of people this may seem -- you may not necessarily get right off the bat why this is important. For us, with the way our camera is set up, we have a screen about that big that I'm expecting my student to look through and basically pay attention to for up to two hours, and I've done it before, and even I can get distracted sometimes. What this allows you to do is this mounts to your -- depending on how you want to do it, this model itself comes with what they call a hot-shoe mount, so it can mount directly to the camera, and then it plugs in to your setup and allows you to have a seven-inch monitor versus the inch-and-a-half or two-inch monitor on the side of the camera.
We haven't gone this route yet. Our student television station uses these, and I can say after talks with them, it's made a big impact. And basically it allows your camera operator to have a better view of what they're pointing the camera at. So they can see more clearly what's going through to your live stream.
Kelvin, anything to add on the HDMI monitor?
Now, GoPro streaming, and I put an asterisk by this because these accessories that I'm going to talk about are under $250, but obviously the GoPro is not. So if you already have a GoPro you're maybe not using on game day, you can add it to your streaming setup without any additional -- with limited funds. Right off the bat, you need what's called a micro HDMI cable. As you can see, it's the smaller of the two. This micro HDMI to an HDMI is a 10-foot cable and it's 8 bucks, so right off the bat this allows you to take your video feed out of your GoPro and into your streaming hardware.
Then more likely than not, you're not going to necessarily want that GoPro just in your streaming booth, so you're going to need to run some cable. Up to 100 feet you can typically get away with and still have a quality HDMI signal, so 100-foot HDMI runs $125. Compared to some of the other cables that are out there, that's really not too bad of a price. And then if you want to ensure that, so as you can see here, your HDMI signals to 115 feet. This will guarantee that. Basically what this is doing is it's allowing -- it's helping boost that signal. For 28 bucks you have an HDMI signal booster. You'll input from one end and there's an output on the other end.
Again, depending on your streaming setup, for us and our outdoor facility, it wouldn't necessarily work the greatest, just because the distance from our streaming booth down to the field, you're looking at more 300 to 400 feet, but depending on your setup, this could be something that works for you.
And then an extra monitor. A lot of us probably have these on our desks, but believe it or not, having an external monitor for your live stream setup makes a huge difference. Whether you're streaming off a MacBook Pro or you're streaming off a Dell computer, whatever your setup is, your screen fills up pretty quickly. So what we've been able to do at Loras is add an external monitor to our setup, and now you're not having to worry about hiding windows or tucking windows away behind something else. You basically have all the space now that you can have. If you're needing to monitor the live stream, you can do that.
For us, we have our main Production Truck window on one screen and then we have our replays when they're clipped and edited on another screen. So normally they'd be on top of each other. With the two-monitor setup, they're not. So here's a 27-inch monitor. There's thousands upon thousands of monitors out there. I just picked one. I've had Dell monitors before and had really good luck. I have an Asus monitor on my desk right now, and it works great, as well. I just picked one. There's thousands out there. But a 27-inch IPS monitor, IPS stands for in-plane switching, for those of you that don't know that, so basically no matter what angle you put your screen at, it's going to give you the same picture. It's not going to be adjusted by the light or things like that.
And then one thing that I threw in here, so it's actually six ways I guess we can say, a white-balance card. If you've got a camera where you can set your white balance, sometimes maybe a player on the field has a white jersey and you can set the white balance to, but you may not always be that lucky. So having this small little card, it's only $5.21, you can make sure that your colors -- it's not going to be too blue or too orange. You can set your white balance using this as basically your neutral white color. It's a great idea, get a couple of these, throw them in your different streaming bags or equipment cases. That way you've got them at five bucks a piece. It's thicker than I'd say cardboard or card stock, excuse me, and it's a great little piece -- yeah, you probably use it for about 10 seconds each time you do, but with us when we use the white-balance card, we don't have to worry about if the color of our video stream is going to be proper.
KELVIN QUELIZ: Especially if you travel. A lot of us travel with our equipment and go to other gyms for the first time. I'm new at my school, so I haven't been to a lot of the gyms that we're going to, and so I have this in our bag that we take, and that way we can go through -- we can just make sure that everything looks the same so we're not going to a gym and it might be dark so it's not balanced correctly. So I just have to go through and just put that, and it takes two seconds.
The last slide that we have, we have a couple minutes, so if anybody has any questions that wants to send them in, we'll be glad to answer them. But the last question was what are some tips that we can give you guys. So the five tips that we came up with, and again, these are just our tips, so if there's more than that we just want to keep it on a time crunch, but simulcast if possible. If you can send it to multiple outlets, multiple platforms, that would help you out tremendously because some people don't go on the website so the URL might not help them, but if they go on Facebook or they go on YouTube, or some people still use Periscope, so if you're doing it through Periscope, whatever the case is, try to simulcast as much as possible.
The second thing is be consistent. You can't just do it one time and then forget it for two months and then just come back with it. So the consistency part is key. I think people will -- if you have mistakes here and there, if you get a dropped signal, where if the case is like I did 10 minutes ago while we were on this, the consistency needs to be there because otherwise then parents are not going to pay or people aren't going to pay if you charge. There's no reason to when they know that you may get a sub-par performance overall.
The third thing is to promote the stream. A lot of us promote all these things that we do; we promote the live stats, we promote graphics, we promote game day, we do all these things. We write preview stories. But the one thing that we forget to do sometimes is just send out the actual link. Again, if you're going to simulcast it on Facebook or whatever the case is, you can just tell them to go to your Facebook page, but a lot of times what I've noticed is that some people just don't even send out the stream and then the numbers are down. So that's just three things.
From our perspective, we try to send it out the game day -- we do it before the game, like a preview 24 hours before we do game day, and then we do it as soon as the game starts. We say watch now and then we send out the link. Depending on where you are, it might be a link directly to the Facebook page or might be the URL, again, depending on what platform you use.
The fourth thing is, and we touched on this before, is capture highlights if possible. A lot of times -- he mentioned Production Truck. I showed you Sidearm and I showed you Box Cast. We also have a tricaster here, so we're able to do different things with that, and we also have an LTM that the Southland Conference provided for us so we can send out all the highlights that we have to our local outlets, and that helps us out tremendously with trying to get publicity, especially for me being new here, because a lot of times, just as we're very understaffed, they are, too, so they're not going to come here for three, four hours, but if you send them highlights of a volleyball match or basketball game, they'll run those highlights, and they'll thank you down the line, just because you're saving them time, and so in turn they're promoting you a lot more than they would have had they had to spend three hours at your event.
And then the fifth thing is the quality. It kind of ties in with consistency, but the quality has to be there. I think people want to hear something, so we mentioned the shotgun mic. If you can't have a broadcaster for every event, just make sure that you're giving people something that entices them to come back. And just the way that I think about it is this way: Am I happy with the product that we're putting out? And if the answer is no or if I don't feel comfortable promoting it, then why should people pay for it because we charge here. So that's the way that I see it, so I think the quality is very important.
CLARK TEUSCHER: A couple of additional questions before we let you guys go. In terms of staffing, how many people do you typically have on a game day for live stream, and how much training does that take before they're ready to actually to do that?
KELVIN QUELIZ: For me, I'm four weeks into a new job. Here it's just two of us, and we hire -- so I hired two game day workers, one to run the camera and one to run the tricaster, and then there's a student intern that cuts the highlights while I stat or I do some social media stuff. So right now it's very slim pickings. Again, I just got here so we're going to try to add some people.
At Kingsville we had two student workers that did video, we had three student workers that worked on the stream itself, and then we had the entire table.
As far as the training goes, really it depends on -- it varies. A lot of us have a film, arts, theater, production, sports broadcasting, sports communication department. You can tie into those outlets and see those student workers are the ones probably familiar with what you're trying to do. But the training is not going to be difficult at all, as long as you let them know exactly what you're looking for because everybody is going to do things in different ways, so tying in with the consistency is what do you want them -- what do you want to see clipped; do you want every highlight, or do you want just big moments, and then explain what the big moments are because to somebody a big moment may be a three-pointer to begin the game; to someone else it might just be a buzzer beater or big play, a big dunk or what have you.
JIM NAPRSTEK: For us at Loras, in total it's -- minus broadcasters, it's a two-person operation. You add in broadcasters, that's even then three or four, and the way we've kind of gone about training is I've got a senior student right now who's kind of my video guru. If any of you are looking for a video GA coming up, he's going to be graduating, but he's taken ownership of it, and he learned all the ins and outs of Production Truck, and so now every game more than likely he's not the one doing it because he's taken it upon himself to training the other students that we have on our staff.
Right now you might start as the camera operator and move your way into what we call our director's chair, but right now of our 10 student assistants that I have, probably about seven or eight of them are comfortable enough to be in the director's chair.
And so that helps me out a lot. I honestly couldn't tell you the last time I sat in that director's chair and ran a live stream from that position, so a much different setup it sounds like than what Kelvin has got at UNO, but that's how we've made it work here, and I know Clark can probably attest to that as well at North Central and the Division III model. More times than not, it's not us sitting in that director's chair running the live stream because we're trying to do something else.
But it works really well for us, and like I said, a big part of why it works is because my students buy in and they take it upon themselves. They want to be the ones that are clipping out and the reason for the highlights that we put out on social media. That's helped a lot, just having their buy-in and their commitment.
CLARK TEUSCHER: Just one final question, for anybody who's looking to either institute a live streaming system or expanding upon it, what are one or two things that really need to be in that proposal to whoever is on the other end of that conversation? What are those things they really need to put in that proposal?
KELVIN QUELIZ: Honestly it would depend on what your budget is. As we've touched on, depending on what you have, you can buy certain things and enhance your broadcasts immediately for under $250, but there are options that are more expensive. It allows you to get a little bit more bang for your buck, but again, it will cost more. For instance, if let's say you want three-four camera setup; you also have to buy a switcher, so it would depend on what your budget is, and then in that way you can kind of dictate.
But in my opinion, the two things that you do have to look for are, number one, a quality camera because you don't want to switch a camera every year. You're just not -- it's not a smart investment if you have to switch a camera every single year and buy a new one because you have so many issues. And then number two is just the staffing. I think it's very important, like we mentioned, to train the staff, but also to have somebody that's comfortable doing it so it's not just you doing it.
Again, right now I'm one of the people doing it, and so I'm going to take it and make it a priority as soon as I bring in a staff to teach them how to do these things so that we can do multiple things and enhance other areas, not just the stream itself.
JIM NAPRSTEK: I think for us, if I was -- if we didn't have a very good streaming setup right now and I was tasked with improving it, call it a bias, but I think one of the first things I'm purchasing is investing in a MacBook Pro. I've had to stream off a Windows computer, and maybe it just wasn't the right one, it very well could be, but we've never had any issues with the computer being able to push out an HD feed and clip highlights and push highlights and do all these things, and just having that peace of mind that -- because in reality, you have all these different components that plug in and make up your live stream, so if you have all these things coming into a computer, if you don't have to worry about that computer being able to do the job, it does give you some peace of mind knowing that you don't have to worry about that.
You know, I think you can get a good -- not great but a good streaming camera for maybe 500 bucks. Really when you're talking about investing in a MacBook Pro you're looking at minimum $2,300, maximum $2,800, $2,900, and then yeah, that's going to help you run the live stream, but then if you want to cut some additional video on top of that, there's no question.
If I was in a position where I'm starting basically from scratch, I might scale back on some of those other things and make sure that I can invest right off the bat in a good computer that I know is going to be able to get the job done.
CLARK TEUSCHER: Definitely a lot of good advice here today. I want to thank both Jim and Kelvin for presenting today. They're definitely available in case anybody has any questions once time is concluded today.
FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports