A friend of mine was concerned about his son’s income potential with an English Literature degree from a small liberal arts college. His son was a junior at the time. The father knew his son was doing weekly video podcasts from his bedroom, and that he had received some fan mail. What he was surprised to learn was that his son was earning $120,000 that year from advertising. The son now has multiple podcast channels and is able to buy a nice house, get married, and live a comfortable financial life. That surprise came five years ago.
Seeing the Future is the Currency of Strategy
It is now 2017. Today, live-streaming is a way many musical groups and comedians are earning money. The top 20 content creators make an average of $31,000 per month using the Live.ly App, according to the Wall Street Journal. The wide availability of Internet music has devastated the income stream for most smaller market musicians. What if they are able to use that same Internet to do virtual music tours, or create connections with their audience, without the road trip? Fans provide tips via the mobile app. One-third of the tips go to Apple or Google through app payments, a small percentage to the app writer, and most goes directly to the talent. Facebook is considering adding a “tip jar” to its struggling live-streaming platform.
Future Customers and Employees
Performers are providing interaction with their audience that changes the dynamic of the relationship. In exchange, the fans are giving money to the performers. Most users are young mobile users. They can access the stream for free, and they still choose to contribute.
How is this changing the expectations of the next generation of talent who will be your customers, or your employees? Do you need to be able to live stream with your subordinates or your customers/prospects in a whole new way? It’s hard to imagine any answer, other than “Yes!” Just as my friend was shocked five years ago at the earning power of his son in college, I was very surprised at the financial success of those using streaming.
We are still in the early stages of the online video revolution. I believe there is incredible power to change global communications for the better. I have actively pursued the best ways to harness these technologies to make that connection happen. I use videoconferencing regularly with clients, and with my colleagues. With my optimism and belief in the potential for the success of the streaming “tip jar”, used on a global basis, it has my attention. We need to view this shift strategically for the benefit to each of us personally, and for our businesses.
See also link to blog “Twilight of the Rock Gods”