Vito was started by the founders of Tito, a platform for selling tickets online, predominantly to in-person events. After demand for their primary product was decimated, they saw an opportunity and took on the challenge of building an online platform for building communities around live-streaming. The goal is to be clean and simple for the user but providing features crafted for the nuanced interactions one experiences attending in-person events, inspired by tools that already provide great online experiences.
Like others in the live events industry, Tito saw a rapid decline in business after news of COVID-19 broke. “Revenue dropped 90% at its worst and business as we knew it was wiped out,” said Paul Campbell, Co-Founder of Tito. “The team had never considered online events before but we recognized there’s a tool missing for the events industry. While the core business is quiet, we decided to build an online conference app.”
Years earlier, Paul had casual conversations with the Mux team about building live streaming but they didn’t pursue anything at the time. With recent events bringing an urgency to building live streaming, the Tito team started testing with YouTube since embedding a YouTube video is easy enough.
However, when it came to live streaming, they experienced a variety of obstacles. First, they had to wait 24 hours before they could even live stream anything. And then embedding was disabled. And then they’d have to have monetization turned on. “It was like you gotta do this, you gotta do that, you gotta have this many views. I was like, yeah, this is hard,” said Paul. “So I took that back to the team and said ‘I think we need to go with Mux.’”
“The day I realized YouTube wasn’t viable, I think I integrated Mux the next day. Of the 41 days of development it took to earning our first revenue, I don’t think the Mux integration took more than a couple days of my attention. And that includes live streaming, video hosting, automatic webhook integration for notifications, and the Mux Data integration - so for a pretty deep integration, it wasn’t painful to do,” said Paul.
Currently, Vito has run multiple test events with audiences ranging from a handful to over 2k. Before officially launching, they plan to build additional features including support for different tiers of attendees that’s lightweight for event organizers to use.
Although they're focusing on the online conference use case right now, Vito is designing the tool with the end of pandemic in mind. Paul said, “We want to ensure Vito is still relevant after all this ends and the demand goes back to both in-person and live streaming. The interesting problem for me is how to make the in-person experience better for attendees. I think what we're doing, ultimately, is going to be far more exciting than just online conferences.”