How to Start a Cable TV Company

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Satellite Companies have secured a portion of the cable TV market.
Satellite Companies have secured a portion of the cable TV market. (Image: Satellite TV image by Bryan Crowe from Fotolia.com)

Cable TV has moved from being a luxury to being standard in American homes. There are hundreds of channels for subscribers to choose from. The opportunities in the industry are significant enough for telephone companies and satellite companies to jump in the fray to complete with local cable providers. Get your piece of the pie. Start a Cable TV Company.

Things You'll Need

  • Business Plan
  • Cable Operators License
  • Building Permit
  • Cable Carriage Agreement

Cable TV Company Start-Up Guide

Commission market studies on the local cable viewers and subscribers. Hire a research firm. Try to discover the dominant cable TV company in the market. Barbara Strozzilaan of Esomar, the world research organization, writes, “Most bonafide research organizations will be listed in one or more of the reputable directories of these kinds - including more specialized directories published by ‘industrial’ marketing research associations in different countries.”

Write a business plan. In the plan, describe your plan of action to capture market share. Describe policies and procedures. Calculate start-up and maintenance costs. Plan your financial based on operating up to the point that the business becomes self-sufficient.

Apply for a business license or get incorporated. To apply for a business license, complete the on line forms for your state agency. To get incorporated, retain a lawyer to draw up incorporation papers.

Plan the cable delivery infrastructure. Assemble a team of architects and technology professionals to help come up with a strategy for delivering cable to subscribers.

Seek funding. Assemble a presentation for investors. Package research documents, your plan of action and details of your cable delivery infrastructure.

Apply for Federal Communications Company (FCC) license. The FCC regulates television broadcast entities and activities. Sign up for a Cable Operations and Licensing System (COALS) account to complete the application for what the FCC calls “Operator and Multichannel Video Programming Distributor (MVPD)”

Get permits and adhere to zoning and construction requirements for the state and city governments. Building your cable delivery infrastructure may require building towers or digging underground to install cabling wires.

Agree to deals with cable television stations and local broadcast affiliates. The number of cable television stations will influence subscribers. Poll potential subscribers about the stations that are most important to them.

Build or lease your service office. Hire a contractor to build the facilities. Create a customer service area to accept payments, address customer concerns and other issues.

Market to consumers. Get subscribers. Buy advertising time on the most watched channel affiliates in the area. Hire an advertising agency to help saturate the advertising channels through magazines, newspapers and television broadcasts.

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