The return to events via live streaming

2020 was a year everyone in the event industry would like to forget. But we have survived thanks to weddings and funerals, which we have been streaming.

Over the past few years clients have been using our onsite delivery of video posts for social media – in essence we have an editor onsite who edits 30 – 60sec clips (Vox Pops) of exhibitors and attendees at a conference or expo. The clips are captioned and ready for posting to the client’s social media platforms in about an hour. We were providing this service for the dental expo at ICC Sydney when the industry was shut down on 13th March.

Within a week I realised that we were going to be shut down for at least six months so I starting looking for alternatives to our current services. I attended two funerals in March / April (with a limit of 10 mourners each) and realised that live streaming was something we should look at.

We did have some hiccups along the way. I figured that as we use our DSLRs for shooting video with excellent results they would be great for live streaming – after all it is just more video. Wrong! We quickly found out that DSLRs overheat and shut down after 10 to 20 mins when in video mode – event the much vaunted Sony A7 mirrorless.

We learned to cope with this by quickly switching to another camera feed and rebooting. But this was not satisfactory so I invested in three video cameras. Running them through the Blackmagic ATEM mini Pro is now working a treat and along with a selection of wireless mics and a separate audio mixer our live streaming kit is complete.

The range of streaming work is interesting – funerals which come in at a few days’ notice, and weddings planned weeks and months in advance (and then postponed) have been our core work. Added to this is a regular chat show style program for a marketing client and a MMA event.

We are not competing with the AV companies who are doing a great job with their pop up studios in various venues across the country, they have essentially established mini TV studios with high end cameras, lighting and audio. Instead we are providing a professional service that can be setup onsite pretty much anywhere.

At EventPix we have always tried to innovate – we were the first to offer online delivery of event photography (in 2001) and most recently we were early adopters of the RealTime delivery system developed by Elementice. Their Canberra team took the downtime imposed on them to fast track further development of their system – the latest innovation being facial recognition. We tested this technology at a college formal in December – the kids loved it. 

Our events are slowly coming back but we are not expecting lager corporate events to return until later in the year. There is just too much uncertainty when a city (or whole state) can go into lockdown with a few hours’ notice.

If you want to chat about what is happening in the industry feel free to drop me an email or call me.

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