Evia President Hilary Laney Featured on a Panel at NAB 2017

The annual NAB (National Association of Broadcasters) Show is where the leading companies in media, entertainment, and tech come to mingle on a massive show floor in Las Vegas. The largest convention of its kind- there were over 100,000 attendees this year- NAB Show can be summed up as the event where live broadcast entertainment teamed up with social media to have a party and invited the guest of honor, science fiction. Drones may have stolen the show, but exhibitors were prepped to impress, showcasing 360° 3D cameras, the latest in LEDs, VR lounges, and even a 4K HD transmission from space.

NAB Show Panel

Evia President, Hilary Laney traveled to NAB2017 (Where Content Comes to Life), where she was invited by Evia partner AmpLive, to participate in an NAB LIVE Show panel discussion entitled “How to Succeed in the Attention Economy and Build Live Audiences.” The panel was, of course, streamed to a live audience.

Hilary Speaks on NAB Panel

AmpLive’s Cameron Jahn served as the panel moderator, and other panelists participating were Aaron Walton, co-founder of the Walton Isaacson agency; Greg Ellis, VP Business Development at DaCast; and Nick Cicero, Founder/CEO of Delmondo.

In case you missed the panel discussion, check out some of the Q&A below.


It’s now an attention economy. Everyone has infinite ways to distract themselves. All types of things are competing for our attention and the attention of our clients. What do your companies see working now for long-term clients in the live streaming space?

Hilary Laney (from the events perspective): “For a long time, it was all about on-demand content. As live streaming is becoming more accessible, we are starting to see content featured that will drive audience interest and get them engaged. We have some customers who do live streaming across their entire event, so they can have that content at the end to distribute not just to attendees, but across the globe.”

Aaron Walton (from the agency perspective): “Coming from the branded entertainment perspective, I would say it’s always about capturing and being a part of those moments that you want your brand to engage customers with. There are some physical constraints to that, since you’re limited to the space you’re physically in. What live streaming does is provide an opportunity to make those moments scalable and that people outside that physical space can enjoy and participate in the brand experience.

Certainly, there’s value to being in the room physically and being a part of the experience, but it’s the next evolution of how we move those experiences. If you look at GoPro, the next evolution might be how to take VR and give people an opportunity to step into this world you’ve created. Your audience might not physically be there, but they are feeling that energy and excitement.”

From a branded entertainment standpoint, what are you seeing in terms of [audience] measurement?

Greg Ellis: “The immediacy [of live streaming] brings people and holds them. Let me give you some examples. Most of our biggest customers are TV networks who have created an OTT approach on top of the DaCast live streaming platform. Every one of them saw audiences grow slower than they thought until they added their live newscast. They had two primary factors of success: a) the live newscast and b) moving onto an app. The app became exciting because [clients] would start posting on their social media whenever breaking news was happening, which would drive people to the app. Live increases consumption of [newscasters’] on-demand content and increases visits, and makes their viewers more persistent and sticky.”

Hilary Laney: “The strategic piece is the biggest opportunity in this space right now. A lot of our customers have been incorporating live streaming within the last 5–7 years. In the beginning it was, “let’s just get this content out there and see what happens.” [Since then,] they’ve gotten views and hits, and now the questions become, “what does this mean?” And “is it really helping grow our business?” We’re seeing customers take a step back and examine why they are incorporating live streaming in their events and the goals and KPIs they are trying to reach.”

Are you seeing clients expand their footprint into live? How do you see this developing?

Nick Cicero: “Fortunately, we sit on both sides because we do all video for our clients. We have customers like MTV, who measures all social video or just video in the OTT platform or in Delmondo.

We see the live side because live is permeating so fast into the OTT environment. In general, we’re focused on an episodic approach, whether it’s an event or original programming for our publisher clients. They are making content over time, which might be a Facebook Live series, or a Snapchat series, or a Facebook long form video series that they’re now distributing and monetizing. We’re looking at how you match and compare the attention time that’s happening in all these places. Typically, we see more people sitting on a live video longer than on a regular video on Facebook, even if it’s 10–12 minutes long.”

How do we make live streaming successful for our clients and the broader industry in 2017?

Aaron Walton: “I think it always comes down to the creative and the content. If you don’t have something that’s really engaging and fun, no matter what you do to get eyeballs, they may come for a second but they’re not going to stay.

We are constantly pushing ourselves, at the agency, to look for new ways to showcase that creativity, developing something that is going to engage consumers in a way they wouldn’t normally be engaged in. One thing that clients are nervous about is releasing some of that control that live has. They’ve spent hundreds of millions of dollars curating what they want their brand to be, and they’re justifiably nervous sometimes about what can happen live. But if you’ve got the right team around you, chances are slim that any discontinuity in the brand will occur.”

Hilary Laney: “We are starting to have conversations with our customers around the generational differences and the way content is consumed. You have the Baby Boomers and Generation X who are used to content a certain way — long form content. Then you have Millennials and even Gen Z who have been consuming content in such a different way. The diversification in the type of content promoted for each event is going to key.”

To watch the full discussion, click here.