Crafter's Companion

How Simplestream helped Crafter's Companion with the creation and syndication of a virtual channel including VOD assets and live streams, via Channel Studio.




Editorial Staff


October 23, 2023

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A special 18th birthday celebration

Founded in 2005 by Sarah Davies MBE – British businesswoman, entrepreneur, and TV personality – Crafter’s Companion is home to all things papercraft, art and colouring, sewing and needlecraft, and more. Specialised in eCommerce and infomercial video, Crafter’s Companion wanted to celebrate the 18th birthday of the brand by launching a 24/7 live channel to be available on YouTube, engaging with a combination of live content and a ‘repeat’ of the live programming.

Crafter’s Companion chose Simplestream as a tech partner, leveraging the tech stack that sits at the core of Channel Studio, the product designed to create virtual channels in the cloud. The scope of the project required additional development on top of the existing tech stack, namely the enhancement of the scheduler – to allow for live events to be added, among VOD assets, to the playlists for the 24/7 rollout – as well as syndication features.


Channel Studio with live events and VOD

As part of the initial scope of the project (a two-week run for the YouTube live channel), Simplestream deployed an enhanced version of Channel Studio. It allowed Crafter’s Companion’s operators to set up live programmes (events) as part of the 24/7 schedule. Additionally, catchup versions of the live programmes, are automatically created within a few minutes after the completed broadcast. The workflow allows the schedule to include replays of the live runs, with the operators able to simply drag & drop the newly created catchup assets to complete the playlist for the day.

The live distribution of the channel to YouTube – Crafter’s Companion preferred platform for user engagement – was made possible by Channel Studio’s built in functionality to syndicate directly to the video platform. The presence of a live chat functionality on YouTube was integral for Crafter’s Companion to keep the audience engaged through the entire run of the scheduled content, even when presenters are not live, thanks to live interactions with a dedicated social team.


Increased engagement, 24/7

The channel created for Crafter’s Companion’s 18th birthday celebration brought higher levels of engagement for the channel. The live syndication of the 24/7 programming on to YouTube created the ideal touchpoint for lovers of all kinds of crafting, especially the US market.

The ambition of Crafter’s Companion to grow its profile as a content provider for teleshopping and infomercial programming found in Simplestream’s Channel Studio an ideal foundation, thanks to a solid architecture and ease-of-use across a simplified UI.