How to Start a WebTV Show for Your Small Business

How to Start a WebTV Show for Your Small Business

In the early days of the Internet, many attempts were made to play videos and TV shows on websites. You might remember that the result was postage stamp size videos that jerked and stuttered like a nervous schoolboy. The results were unwatchable. But, as Internet connection speeds went up, and the cost of hosting went down, that combination made it possible for anyone to upload and play videos online. With this came a change in how everyone viewed media and opportunities for small businesses that never before existed.

YouTube was born, as were a proliferation of other video sharing websites. While most user-generated videos were not interesting to a wide audience (e.g. Fluffy the cat falling off the sofa), an ‘underground’ movement of independently created shows gradually started popping up. Apple iTunes calls them Video Podcasts, others call them WebTV shows, still others refer to them as Internet Television. Whatever the label, they’ve experienced a steep, steady, continuous rise in popularity.

As the interest in, and adoption of, high quality Internet video content spread, there developed an opportunity to change how, where and on what we were able to access content. In 2010, major TV manufacturers including Sony, Panasonic, LG, Sharp, and others, launched TV sets that were capable of playing WebTV shows. It was the beginning of ‘content convergence’ – or the integration of traditional TV with WebTV. These televisions connected to the Internet allowing users to access high quality WebTV shows through various types of navigation (based on the manufacturer). It was genius.

WebTV and Small Business

So what does this have to do with your small business? A study from ABI Research conservatively estimates that in 2016, some 80 million TV’s offering Internet connectivity for WebTV shows will be purchased. This means that most homes will soon have at least one of these televisions. This means one thing for every business – huge opportunity!

There’s not a single business on the planet that can’t benefit from having an engaging, educational, and entertaining WebTV show. It will make your business stand out from the crowd, and enable you to generate increased profits, faster.

I speak from experience. I was an early adopter of WebTV, and my weekly show, “Help! My Business Sucks!” has become an Internet phenomenon, propelling my marketing and consulting business into the stratosphere. The show became the #1 marketing show on Apple iTunes, despite being in a competitive market. I’ve since accomplished the same for other individuals by helping them to produce shows in such diverse niches as Dentistry, Electric Guitar Playing, Recipe Col-lecting, Danish Tourism, Real-Estate Investing, Internet Business, Fitness Training, Disney Theme Park Vacations, and more than 35 other niches.

The presenters of all these shows have four things in common:

      • They’re passionate about their topic
      • They want to share their knowledge
      • They needed to create the show on a tight budget (under $1k)
      • They wanted to be positioned as THE foremost expert in their niche

The best news is that WebTV is still in its infancy. If you take action, you can dominate your niche both online, and on TV.

Let me assure you, WebTV is one of the easiest, fastest, and cheapest way to stand out from the crowd, which is what most businesses are struggling to do. It establishes you as the expert authority in your niche, you’ll become a celebrity, and get to enjoy all the inherent benefits of that status. Check out this infographic on some other reasons it’s a great marketing move for small business:

7 Reasons To Start a Webtv show


Hopefully at this point in the article you are super excited and wondering what the next steps are to get started with your own WebTV show. Well, it can be done quite easily! Here is a cheat sheet on how to get started, but to summarize, here are the 5 simple steps:

  1. Decide on a great idea for a show in a niche that you’re passionate about or already active in
  2. Purchase your equipment. You’ll need a video camera and a wired microphone (try the Audio Technica ATR-3350 for under $20)
  3. Invest in some simple editing software (both Mac and PC come with free editing software you can use to get started
  4. Choose a hosting service ( I suggest Vimeo or Blip) to host your videos
  5. Film your show and then distribute it on YouTube or iTunes so people can discover you!

Trying to stand out in a very crowded and noisy market can be tough, but if you employ the right techniques and establish yourself as an expert to a wide market, odds are you’ll find some great success. Give WebTV a try – you might regret it if you don’t!

Andrew Lock is a maverick marketer who’s often often referred to as the "Yoda of Marketing” not because he’s short with green pointy ears, but because of his encyclopedic marketing knowledge. Andrew presents a popular WebTV show, Help! My Business Sucks!, that helps small business owners to build a better business.

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