Virtual Channels: What Are They and How To Monetise Them

Kristiane Ekrheim
September 26, 2022
Virtual Channels: What Are They and How To Monetise Them

What is a virtual channel? 

A virtual channel is a live linear stream created from VOD (video on demand) content. By stitching together existing video assets, you can create one piece of media containing them all. Basically, you create a live channel with pre-curated content. Virtual channels are sometimes referred to as VOD2Live or FAST channels. 

Why use virtual channels?

We have become used to watching what we want when we want it, but the drawback of video on demand is the abundance of choice. Choice overload is paralysing for many and often causes indecision. Perhaps, even worse, this decision fatigue can cause audiences to be more dissatisfied with their choices and ultimately the content provider. With virtual channels you can offers something VOD can’t - the lean-back experience – the ability to watch something you didn't know you would like.

Virtual channels can be used to repurpose on-demand content for a 24/7 playlist, begin your ad insertion journey, and package content together in new ways, all resulting in new revenue streams.

Who can benefit from virtual channels?

Any organisation with a video library looking for a more accessible and affordable way to add choice, value, and revenue can benefit from virtual channels. Virtual channels can be used for specific live events, fan-centric brands, or specific demographics. Basically, a virtual channel can be tailored to any target audience.

How to monetise virtual channels?

You can monetise a virtual channel as a FAST-channel by offering the content for free in exchange for people watching ads, as you do with traditional linear TV. Virtual channels can also be used in addition to traditional SVOD services, as an extension to the subscription-based offer.  If you want to know more on how to monetise your video library check out this article on SVOD, AVOD and TVOD.

Creating virtual channels with Vimond

Vimond’s virtual channels solution enables you to choose your assets, including ads, bumpers, and main content, to form a playlist that is stitched together in your desired order. Then, the playlist is configured into a virtual MP4 file for live distribution.   

Can you personalize virtual channels?

The simple answer is yes. In short, using Vimond’s Smart List feature, you can eliminate the usual effort needed to create additional playlists and virtual channels. Smart List’s predefined filters use asset and consumer behaviour metadata to automatically promote content accordingly. Variables that identify such logic as “Recently Added”, “Popular Near You”, or “Movies you Might Like” are dynamically added to playlists to create a tailored, lean-back experience for your audience. 

Benefits of virtual channels

  • Repurpose existing content
  • Reduce churn
  • Increase audience engagement 
  • High-quality VOD video maintained in linear playout
  • Eliminates traditional effort involved in creating new playlists
  • Allows for ads 
  • Schedule the launch of a channel

Take Vimond for a spin!

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