Broadcast Trafficking

Many people only concentrate on what goes into making a video, rather than what it takes to get a video to where people can see the video. It makes sense. There are a lot of elements to manage — storyboarding, pre-production, shooting, video editing, special effects, color correction, audio mixing — the list is long. There’s so much work to get the final product into the can, but then what? Without a comprehensive distribution strategy your amazing video just sits there.

Videos are meant for watching. There numerous ways to release your videos – social media, local TV, or cable – all of which have their advantages. And while digital is rapidly ascending the throne of exposure supremacy, tv marketing is still vital for most brands. When you’re prepping a commercial for television stations or cable they must go through broadcast trafficking. Setting this up properly ensures your video gets in front of the right audience at the right time.

Getting your video out there

At its core, broadcast trafficking is about scheduling. Program material, like commercials, go into specific day and time slots on TV stations or a cable network. By purchasing a slot, you’re telling them where and when your commercial should appear. A broadcast trafficker makes sure the right content gets to where it needs to be at the right time.

Multi-system operators, local cable companies, and affiliate networks all have time to sell for commercials. Often cable gets you the most bang for your buck since it puts your ad out across the country.

But here’s the thing: trafficking can get very complicated, very quickly. Every major network has their own rules and requirements for commercials going to broadcast. One might demand 8 seconds of black pre-roll screen in the final export, while another might accept .mov files but not .mp4s, and vice versa. And that goes for streaming services like Hulu and Amazon, as well. 

How it works in practice

Here’s a case study. This dynamic video created by ECG Productions for Resurgens Orthopaedics checks all the boxes for a high-quality commercial. It speaks directly to their audience, it has a clear messages that drives the business’s core values, and features some cool, integrated text graphics. 

Resurgens’ goal was to air this commercial all across Georgia, which meant extensive distribution to multiple outlets. Each regional affiliate received it’s own, customized commercial with an end-tag that directed the audience to their closest Resurgens location. Each video received its own unique ISCI code, which let the networks know what they were airing. However, without proper broadcast trafficking, these commercials would have aired in the wrong location, or not aired at all. Just imagine: people all across not knowing where to go for their orthopaedic needs, and Resurgens missing out on all those potential patients. In short, it might have been a disaster.

Commercials should be professionally produced to set the right tone and make sure people actually watch. A poorly produced commercial can make people think less of your brand, questioning the quality of your product or service. Partnering with an experienced production company, like ECG Productions, can get you the high-quality video you want to represent your business.

The average American sees or hears over 4,000 ads each day. How do you make yours stand out?

Getting assistance with broadcast trafficking

As we’ve discussed, every network has different quality control specifications. Without meeting these, your video can’t air. If you’re stuck with an unairable video, first reach out to the production company you worked with to create your video. Perhaps they know the ins and outs of broadcast trafficking and can get you up to the network’s standards.

However, even if they can’t help there’s still no need to despair!

ECG Productions can take you through the entire production process, from conception to filming to editing. But we believe in seeing our videos all the way through the finish line. So if you’re goal is to air on tv, we’re there to handle the broadcast trafficking, as well! Not only will we help you create a high-quality finished product, but we’ll make sure it’s delivered to the right places for viewing.

To learn more about ECG Productions’ full range of services, contact us today.