By Anders Wassén, Head of OTT Development @ Red Bee Media

In addition to making content available to audiences through paid subscriptions and pay-per-view, Red Bee’s OTT services offers multiple other ways to monetize content while building an audience and increasing reach. In this blog, I’ll share a few approaches for providing your audience with ways in which they can consume your content without having to reach for their credit card, and still contribute to your revenues.


Of course, nothing is really for free! The key to increasing earnings lies in providing advertisers with the opportunity to display their video ads for your viewers. Even with low volumes, it’s possible to monetize your content as you work on growing your reach, since your viewers can be included in a wider audience pool made available to advertisers. The secret is to classify your content using the IAB taxonomy model, which enables the advertisers to target the intended audience for their message.  

It is important to emphasize that you will always own the rights to monetize the content. Red Bee will never insert ads into content that you have not explicitly enabled for ad monetization. We believe that the right to monetize should lie with the creator, not the platform provider.

 Our service support ad monetization options include the following types of content:

  • Video on demand
  • Live events
  • Virtual TV channels
  • Linear TV channels (simulcast)

Because we believe the best “ad blocker”-blocker is a seamless user experience with relevant advertising for your audience, we intentionally limit the types of ads we support to video ads that can be effortlessly inserted into the stream. Only one ad is played at a time, and your viewer will never be distracted by companion banner ads or other distracting elements.  

Video on Demand

You specify where in the video on demand file the service can insert ads. For example, it can either be placed before the actual content (pre-roll) or in the middle of the content (mid-roll). We also support inserting ads at the end of the content (post-roll) if you prefer to do so.



Live Events
To insert ads into live events we provide an open API with which your production partner can integrate to trigger ad insertion opportunities within the live stream. The ads are inserted into the stream on the server side at a point in time where the production finds it suitable.


Image Credit: Bart Heemskerk


Virtual TV channels
With virtual TV channels you can create a linear TV experience from your library of video on demand content. You create a virtual TV channel by setting up a schedule with content and programmed ad breaks, or automatically curate a virtual TV channel from metadata and ad break placement business rules (for example two breaks per half-an-hour, where each break has a duration of 90 seconds). This ad break of 90 seconds for example, is then dynamically replaced in the stream on the server side to ensure an interruption-free and seamless experience for the viewer.

Linear TV channels
When simulcasting a traditional linear TV channel, our service can replace the linear TV ad break dynamically with online video ads that can be monetized. The ad break is replaced in the stream on the server side in a similar way to virtual TV channels. Both these options (virtual and linear TV channels) are suitable if you want to grow into the FAST-market and distribute your content as “free to air”-channels.



All of the options mentioned in this blog post can of course be combined with other monetization models, or incorporated with a hybrid service where some of your content is behind a pay-wall (premium), and some is available for free, with ads as a way to build your audience and drive them to start paying for your service. As the ad monetization eyeballs are part of a larger aggregated pool of eyeballs, there is no risk of cannibalizing either model, even though your service would offer both.

Get in touch if you’d like to find out more!