TownNews.com Acquires New Video Distribution Technology From Calkins Digital

With the acquisition of Calkins Digital over-the-top (OTT) video technology, TownNews.com now has the ability to offer its clients video distribution through branded channels.

Newspapers are constantly thinking of new and innovative ways to capture the attention of their audiences especially when it comes to video. Now, they have another opportunity.

Last December, TownNews.com made a move to stay at the cutting edge of video delivery with its acquisition of Calkins Digital’s over-the-top (OTT) video technology suite.

Brad Ward

“OTT was just a buzzword several years ago. We have found that the demand for OTT products has gone from talk to action,” said Brad Ward, TownNews.com CEO.

Ward said they chose Calkins Digital because it was a familiar name in the newspaper industry.

“Not only is the technology fantastic, (Calkins Digital OTT) educated the industry about the potential of OTT over the last few years, partnering with huge names to improve and grow the technology,” he said. “Customers can expect to be not only educated on this product but to have a real avenue to enter this space with a company they trust and have history with.”

The newly acquired video technology will provide a unique avenue for TownNews.com to service its customers: the ability to distribute video content through branded channels on Apple TV, Roku and Amazon Fire TV.

“This is motivation for newspaper companies across the globe to fine-tune their video offerings and capture an audience that until now have been out of their grasp,” Ward said. “Where ‘TV’ has only been inclusive of broadcast companies and companies willing to invest in the infrastructure, the digital delivery of content to OTT platforms is anyone’s game.”

Officially titled BLOX OTT, customers who work with TownNews.com can expect the creation of a streaming channel app, that can be monetized through pre-roll ads and programmatic advertising, which can be fully tracked with analytics.

The company also expects to deliver a reach to untapped audiences. That’s what Ward says TownNews.com did with WEHCO Media, an Arkansas-based daily and weekly publishing company.

“(WEHCO) ventured into the OTT space with a niche product focusing on Arkansas Razorback football,” Ward explained. “This unique content idea captured an audience outside of ‘news’ and has proven to be a success for the paper.”

Grabbing the attention of a broadcast audience can be overlooked by newspaper publishers, but it should be something that they need think about as the popularity in streaming services is only increasing.

For more information, visit townnews365.com.

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Published: March 9, 2018

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