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LCTV: Moving to IGTV

In 2018, Lasell University announced that they would be installing a television studio on campus. Prior to the studio, members of LCTV and the video production department were using portable lighting kits, putting DSLR’s on tripods, and using a wall painted blue as a greenscreen. Additionally, without the use of a studio, the amount of work it took to create something in this style stunted motivation across campuses. The Spark, one of LCTV’s first consistent programming, was born from the GREG lab, the center of most student-produced work on campus. The Spark was a comedy styled talk show written by Lasell’s talented members of LCTV.

Once word spread that there would be a fully equipped studio at the hands of students, the ideas and possibilities were endless. The first semester it was built inspired the members of LCTV to work together to create Lasell’s first-ever news show, Lasell Weekly.

Creating a news program from scratch was no easy feat, and even with only a year and a half with the use of the studio, the club overcomes challenges every day. The most important thing that members strived for was quality content and consistency. We started by looking at our target audience, the students, and working to create content that met their needs.

We knew this: students wanted to know what was happening on campus, and the two largest niche groups of students on campus consisted of athletes and fashion-students. From this, we decided to create a variety news show with 4 segments in total: news, weather, fashion, and sports. 

Lasell Weekly debuted March 25th, 2019, already nearly two months into the spring semester with a little over one month remaining. In that last month, the team from LCTV produced 5 episodes total, releasing one per week for the remainder of that semester. The following academic year, 1 of our episodes, the sizzle reel created at the end, and a sports segment went on to be nominated at the Intercollegiate Broadcast Systems. The implementation of the studio was absolutely a success in its first year.

In the second year with the studio, we learned from our engagement on Youtube and begun coming up with ideas to continue to expand our content in unique ways. 

We learned that viewing was dropping off between the 5 and 10-minute mark. We also felt that the percentage of views could have been higher based on previous research, and felt that Youtube might not have been the best medium for our content. 

We thought a lot about the content of our shows and felt that we had grown as a club to be able to separate our segments into their own programs, as well as opening the gates to more show ideas to be born. Lasell Weekly transformed into the Laser Sports Rundown, The Laser Exclusive, Patch Notes, and The Scoop. Additionally, we looked at where our target audience was most present: Instagram. With the recent implementation of IGTV, we were looking to model our channel after Netflix’s, a variety of content all accessible in one place.

After one semester with this in place, our engagement grew dramatically. With it being on IGTV, it was much easier to create shareable content, as well as reach our audience. 

After the second semester with this style in place, Patch Notes, The Laser Exclusive, and Laser Sports Rundown excelled. In 6 months, 14 total episodes were released on IGTV. The sports show was receiving requests from students to do more with their team, indicating the audience was growing, and the implementation was succeeding. IGTV allows LCTV to reach our peers and easily track the success of the content we’re producing. 

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