Why Content Discovery in OTT Matters

December 1, 2021

You could have the most engaging content on a given platform, but if you’re not actively managing the content discovery process, your audience may never know it’s there.

With the over-the-top (OTT) streaming market going strong and the relationship between content consumers and services constantly evolving, it’s more important than ever to be aware of how your subscribers find your streaming content. In a recent webinar, The Role of Content Discovery in OTT, Paul Erickson from Parks Associates and Nick Cicero from Conviva discussed current trends and how the right content discovery strategy can help you gain the competitive advantage.

Trending: Rising consumer choice, tougher competition

Propelled by the pandemic and the captive audiences it created, the OTT market is riding high with no sign of slowing down anytime soon. According to Paul Erickson, a senior analyst with Parks Associates, almost 82% of US households have at least one OTT video subscription—and many have four or more. In fact, OTT video subscribers have now passed traditional pay-TV subscribers, making OTT videos the primary way that U.S. consumers access video content.

“The market’s crowded, and it’s getting even more crowded. Competition today is at an all-time high.” – Paul Erickson, Senior Analyst, Parks Associates

In order to keep these numbers soaring, customer acquisition is vital. Without contracts holding them back, it’s easy for consumers to leave a streaming platform when they’ve finished watching the content that drew them there in the first place. It’s critical that streaming services keep existing subscribers engaged and attract new ones to replace those who are lost via OTT’s inherently high churn rate.

Delivering the right content is non-negotiable

Parks Associates research shows that three of the top-five factors driving OTT subscriptions involved content. On the flip side, not finding the right content or running out of content to watch are two out of the top-five reasons for people canceling a streaming service.

Keeping viewers highly engaged is becoming increasingly important to ensure that a service is a must-have part of consumers’ subscription stack. It’s vital to optimize the content available, personalize it for them, and make it easy for them to find it. In terms of maximizing customer acquisition, engagement, and stickiness, content is king and essential to success.

“Services should bring in subscribers with content and keep them subscribed with content. That’s the ideal dynamic.” – Paul Erickson, Senior Analyst, Parks Associates

Understanding the social media factor

The way users are finding content is more fragmented than ever before. A recent study by Conviva found that streaming media consumers most often find content by word of mouth, either through conversations with friends and family or by seeing the social media posts of their inner circle and influencers.

“Discovery is crucial to connecting consumers to content and keeping them connected throughout the journey. In today’s competitive environment, optimizing the content discovery process is essential for success.” – Nick Cicero, VP of Strategy, Conviva

Tapping into word-of-mouth strategies is crucial if content providers want to achieve widespread market adoption. This approach should be twofold. First, create a word-of-mouth strategy to bring in new viewers while at the same time inspiring your heaviest users to tell their contacts about the latest cool show they watched on your streaming platform.

Leveraging data with Conviva to supercharge search and recommendations

Consumers today are faced with a glut of streaming offerings, and they can find it challenging to wade through the various platforms and find content that resonates with them. The solution? Leveraging technology and data to make these connections for them.

Conviva makes it easy with our portfolio of measurement products that enable streaming publishers to better understand the viewer journey so they can grow viewership, engagement, and revenue.

Conviva’s sensor is deployed within four billion applications streaming on devices, collecting trillions of data events every single day across many of the world’s leading publishers in the streaming space.
Through segmentation, Conviva’s tools can help you understand how different pockets of consumers are actually watching and engaging with your content.

“AI is just going to be better at processing massive amount of data and finding those particular nuances that would be nearly impossible or too time-consuming to do via the old human analog method.” – Paul Erickson, Senior Analyst, Parks Associates

You can take these insights to both build better recommendation and search engines and develop marketing and retention strategies for your streaming platform. In the end, you create a more curated experience for the subscriber, which boosts both adoption and retention.

To learn more, watch our webinar: The Role of Content Discovery in OTT