Al Roker says it took two weeks to create series ‘ChefShock’

Al Roker (left) chats with Mario Armstrong (right) at NAB Show New York.

NEW YORK -- Al Roker’s online livestreaming network Roker Media has its hand in many streaming series and he said that one of its latest, ChefShock, took only two weeks to take from idea to market.

Roker, speaking Wednesday at the NAB Show New York, said that ChefShock uses a fairly simple broadcast setup consisting of tricasting equipment and several small cameras including GoPros. Combined with the unscripted nature of the series and a relatively low overhead, ChefShock has a faster path to market than typical TV productions.

Roker said that in traditional TV production, the lead time between conceptualization and on air can be months.

“With live streaming, you can make changes almost on the fly,” Roker said.

ChefShock is a daily two-hour live cooking show that airs on Twitch, the live streaming video game platform owned by Amazon. The series stars Justin Warner, winner of season 8 of Food Network Star. The shows uses social media to field questions from viewers in real-time.

ChefShock is one of several series currently being produced by Roker Media. Roker’s company is also producing the upcoming Mario Armstrong’s Never Settle Show for Facebook Live. Roker said that the series his company is producing are platform agnostic.

But in working with different platform partners, series like ChefShock and Never Settle are still searching for the best ways to monetize the content their creating. Roker said that, in the case of ChefShock, a partnership model with Twitch is helping to at least absorb some of the costs of production and distribution. But with a show like Never Settle on Facebook Live, a platform that has thus far proved difficult for content creators to make money from, Roker said his company just went ahead with the production any way because the costs were fairly low.

To help push toward monetization, Roker Media was partnered with companies like Delmondo, which provides proprietary software that looks at live streaming data that tells who’s watching and for how long.

Armstrong, who was also at NAB Show event, stressed the importance of collecting data on the front end instead of always collecting it on the back end. He said that method, which is being used with Never Settle, has allowed the series to give a better picture to potential ad buyers about which demographics are tuning in and what type of programming they’re hoping to see.