HOW COVID-19 AFFECTS OTT AND TV VIEWERSHIP

Seemingly, the world will battle Ccoronavirus for the entire 2020 and perhaps even longer. Stuck at home, people are hungry for exciting and immersive content. This trend is evident from the surge in the active OTT subscriptions and increased TRP ratings. Online streaming services have experienced a whopping 198 percent rise globally due to the government-mandated social distancing. This sudden increase in the consumption of data has led to services like Amazon, YouTube, and Netflix reducing their streaming quality to avoid server crashes across the world. 

(Reference: https://www.prnewswire.co.uk/news-releases/covid-19-update-global-ott-services-market-is-projected-to-reach-us-67-76-bn-by-2023-and-is-expected-grow-at-a-cagr-of-14-55-over-the-forecast-period-2019-2027-says-absolute-markets-insights-883285551.html 

This promising trend is here to stay. We have no reason to believe that this demand will decrease. Thirst for good entertainment and high consumption of internet paints a rosy picture for OTT and TV. 

How growth in viewing time affects general internet usage? 

A reputed UK research conducted in April 2020 states that though the media industry is witnessing a downtrend, the demand for OTT platforms has increased significantly. (Reference: https://www.pwc.co.uk/covid-19/pwc-entertainment-media-covid-19-viewpoints.pdf). While the consumption is still increasing, service providers want to encourage responsible streaming practices with several social distancing measures. Sudden spikes in consumption cause network congestion and make streaming difficult. Exhausting internet bandwidth complicates the use of the internet to avail of essential services.  

Why content needs have increased so exponentially?  

Working from home has become a reality during this pandemic. People are getting bored and finding new ways to entertain themselves. In countries that have a long lockdown ahead of them, one can only imagine how much content will be consumed. Hence, the OTT and TV viewership is at a record-high figure. 

How can OTT platforms use the crisis to increase their customer base? 

Disney’s timely launch of its digital streaming service called Disney+ supports the growth of OTT services during this crisis. However, companies should be mindful while pricing their subscriptions as the crisis has reduced disposable income. A KPMG report also motivates various OTT platforms to include gaming in their ecosystem to increase their customer base.  

How have the consumption patterns shifted due to the Novel Coronavirus? 

OTT platforms generally use either an ad-based model or subscription model to generate revenue. KPMG states that although there’s a huge consumption surge, monetization is still a major issue. Ad revenue from several companies is under threat due to the COVID-19 economic slowdown. Hence, OTT platforms must heavily rely on subscription models to generate revenue through data and content consumption. A Nielsen report states a 60 percent rise in content consumption during this pandemic. (Reference: https://thebluecircle.co/2020/05/01/the-rise-of-ott-platforms-during-covid-19/). Making a few content pieces available for free to engage viewers is a great strategy to improve revenue. 

What actionable steps can OTT platforms take to boost revenue? 

People are desperate for good content during this pandemic season. If you’re a budding OTT platform wanting to build a client-base, here are our tips for reaching a larger audience. 

  • Invest in Advertising – Analyse your customers and reach them on a platform that they use. Getting out there to improve your services’ reach improves your chances of generating more revenue. 
  • Come up with Well-priced subscriptions – Providing your content at an affordable price helps you target a larger audience sets and increase in subscriptions.
  • Seek customer feedback – You may think your services are perfect. However, only your customers can tell you where you lag. In this competitive space, flexibility to accommodate customer demand will separate you from your opponents. 
  • Get awesome content – In this age of content abundance, having the right content to attract your viewers is critical. Your content determines how many users you can engage and retain.  Spend on a good market research services company to get an insight into the latest trends in the market.
  • Set prices according to the marketplace – When you’re pricing your subscriptions, always keep in mind how much the consumer is willing to spend on these services. For most people, these services are an add-on to their life. Hence, it’s wise to assess the market and seek out extremely affordable prices for developing markets. 

Final Remarks 

Content is king! The OTT and TV viewership is going up due to COVID-19. While this crisis damages many other sectors. People need these services to entertain themselves and keep the negative crisis talk at bay. OTT platforms need to hit the metal when it’s hot and that’s now. Smart business owners attract and monetize their content well. We hope this write-up gave you some ideas on how to convert this crisis into an opportunity for your firm. Get cracking on your successful marketing ideas today! 

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