With NAB just a few hours away from ending, we wanted to share our thoughts on the excitement of the last 3 days, and the 4 biggest trends in video distribution we see evolving this year. One thing that was clearly felt was the power of the streaming wars. OTT services are launching and shutting down at almost the same rate, indicating that the market is maturing. The streaming market is highly competitive, and only those who stand out with unique capabilities will end up on top. So, let’s talk streaming trends!
#1: The Silent Trend; The value of the cloud is no longer questioned:
No one is talking about cloud anymore. Well, almost. It used to be that half the discussion with customers was about the pros and cons of cloud development and SaaS models, but today, that is no longer the case. Today, cloud is the new platform for television, and everyone is deploying on the Cloud, making it the trend no one is talking about, but everyone is using. Still, cloud technology is evolving and what we’ve been seeing is that not all streaming platforms are created equal. In an era where streaming has become the new TV business for many, technology providers must offer a much more complete and robust set of capabilities in their cloud offering, rather than offering the simple “off the shelf” OTT product. Cloud TV should bring together the best of OTT and Pay TV. It should combine the strengths of OTT products: interactivity, multiple screens, and agility, with the scalability, robustness and customization capabilities that traditional Pay TV has always featured, to create a new generation of Cloud TV services that can scale their streaming business.
#2: AI and Data will play an even larger role for Cloud TV and TV Marketers in 2019:
It’s 2019. If you aren’t thinking data first, you aren’t utilizing data to its fullest abilities. Today, data and actionable insights are an integral part of the success of the Cloud TV platform. As TV marketers, it is time to join the revolution of data transformation and take your efforts to the next level. Coupling AI segmentation capabilities alongside rich data that this transformation will bring about allows TV marketers to hyper-target campaigns and outreach, resulting in higher acquisition, higher retention, higher engagement and better monetization.
#3: New Monetization Methods will emerge:
As the market gets more competitive, TV service providers need to come up with unique ways to satisfy their customers and increase their revenue with new methods.
- Hybrid Business Models: While the option to allow for different business models has been around for some time, we hear more customers asking for more purchasing options, causing services to launch with various business models (AVOD, SVOD, TVOD, coupons) to accommodate their vastly different audiences.
- Microtransactions in OTT: Potentially seen as a microtrend, microtransactions are a growing monetization tool for Cloud TV providers. With microtransactions, the customer can purchase a unit of content as small as they choose, for example, the final goal of the World Cup Final. This allows the TV service provider to sell more, since customers may opt out if they must purchase the entire episode.
#4: Advertisements Are Becoming More Sophisticated:
Advertising-based monetization has always been a part of the TV business, and that is still the case for the new streaming-based TV businesses. Service providers that apply methods such as server-side ad insertion, user targeting, highly accessible metrics, and a whole digital and programmatic advertising ecosystem are just waiting to get their foot into the TV advertising world. As the streaming world evolves, we are going to see a lot more sophisticated advertising coming up around us: personalized, frame accurate, interactive, and cross screen connected programmatic ad exchanges (where it makes sense).