Four Metrics That Matter for Church Live Streaming
With the current COVID-19 pandemic, more churches than ever before are turning to streaming online as a way to meet their congregants where they are. One of the benefits of streaming both live and on-demand online is that it provides powerful ways to track, measure, and understand how audiences are experiencing your content so that you can uncover new ways to serve and reach more people.
The Value of Analytics
Have you ever heard the adage, “If you can’t measure it, you can’t improve it”? Technology for live streaming video now offers the ability to track audience behavior in real-time and provide real online engagement during live services by painting a picture of the service segment consumption by the viewer. With access to analytics, there’s no need for second-guessing, you can gain important insights into what content is resonating with your audience which will help inform your online content strategy moving forward and where you should be focusing your efforts.
According to the latest research conducted by Barna, when it comes to measuring the impact of their online services, nearly half of U.S. pastors (48%) are looking at the number of views and another 13 percent gauge engagement by the number of people who watch the full service. One in 10 (12%) are relying on feedback from members of their congregation, while some are basing their metric on comment activity (9%).
We asked our experts for their recommendations on what are the right metrics to be measuring and why. Here they are:
Where are your viewers located? Analytics can provide you with information on where your viewers are located not just by country, state, or city but as granular as zip code, latitude, and longitude. This insight can help you to understand any potential hot spots for future planting or pop-up churches. Where better to plant a new brick and mortar church than where you already have viewers?
How are your viewers watching? Get an overview of what devices (and versions), operating systems, and browsers your audience uses to watch your content. Viewer device usage can help you identify if you should build a mobile or set-top-box application for your video content.
Get to know and understand your online viewers and their behavior; learn more about what content they’re watching and how long they spend watching it. With this information in hand, you can understand how your content is performing, identify any trends and patterns, and focus your efforts on adjusting to meet your viewers’ preferences and increasing engagement.
4. Quality of Experience
Quickly pinpoint where any issues are occurring and how your videos are affected. By monitoring quality of service, you can proactively troubleshoot any problems and ensure a seamless experience to the end-user. You can also use this information to tune your streams or bit rates to ensure the viewer has a high-quality experience with minimal distractions when viewing your messages.
At Haivision, our team of faith streaming experts regularly reviews analytics with our partners in ministry to help them make informed decisions. This data mining invariably uncovers trends in viewer behavior that can enhance online engagement and ministry direction. In addition to heat maps that identify large pockets of viewers, we regularly see at least 60% or more of viewers consuming content on mobile devices. This can be indicative of viewers’ desire for short-form, rather than long-form content for messages or a need for a mobile app. The adverse is also apparent as live and video-on-demand content watched on set-top box applications such as Apple TV and Roku usually indicate a significantly longer effective content viewing time. This deeper engagement is significant for ministry to truly connect with viewers.
Powerful Intelligence in a Single, Easy to Use Platform
Make your data work for you. With access to real-time metrics, an online campus pastor can see exactly when viewers begin watching during the service. Data filtration tools also allow for parsing “effective playtime” thus measuring real online engagement. This and other data points can help your church make informed decisions about your online ministry strategy with confidence.
Powered by Youbora, Haivision Video Cloud’s video analytics provide all of your data in one place so you can identify the data most relevant to you. With SmartTracking, SmartAlerts, and SmartReports, we provide one-on-one stream analysis, automatically detect and notify you of any abnormal situations in your service, and deliver customizable, automated reporting which can easily be shared for your whole team to view.