The Greatest Threat to OTT’s Reign
Two Points of friction that will keep fans away from your OTT apps
OTT may be the future of video but the path is not completely clear. Two significant friction points stand in the way of OTT’s rightful place as heir to the content distribution thrown. Two phenomena, Show dumping and Network dumping, are significant roadblocks temporarily obstructing OTT’s rise to dominance. Show dumping occurs when a viewer stops watching a specific show because it becomes too difficult to access. Network dumping is when an OTT app fails to engage fans once the content they originally came for has been completed. Although both dilemmas will prove challenging obstacles, solutions exist; show dumping and network dumping can be overcome and the networks that figure out how will win the OTT crown.
The immediate but more easily remedied issue facing OTT is show dumping. According to a global TiVo study 37% of viewers have dropped a TV program once it has gone OTT due to difficulties accessing it. When a show is only available through an OTT premium app there is the potential for drop-off. Fans who do not own the hardware necessary to view OTT content are left in the dark and viewers who have yet to cut/ shave the cable cord may be unwilling to pay a la carte style for premium content. The solution is simple in this case, time. OTT is still in its early years. Only 20% of households currently have some form of SmartTV. Although that is already a large market, over 20 million households, by 2019 it is predicted half of all US homes will have connected SmatTV’s. In conjunction with the rapidly growing number of cord cutters joining the ‘never cable’ millennial crowd, the days of show dumping are clearly numbered.
Show dumping for the most part is due to take care of itself. However, Network dumping is a critical hurdle that requires direct action by a network to overcome. Networks that can thwart network dumping will be the ones who win at OTT. Once a fan has finished a show or a specific video, what will keep them engaging with new content? The answer is something the current king of OTT has known for years.
The Recommendation King
Netflix has mastered the art of keeping viewers engaged. Their secret sauce; a powerful recommendation system that the company claims is responsible for 75% of user activity. The instant a user starts viewing on Netflix, it tracks their behavior, quickly developing a profile that will allow a recommendation system to predict what that user wants to watch next.
The Ultimate discovery tool is curated recommendations
Recommendations are not only a nice addition for a video-streaming app, they are vital. 53% of Millennials expect apps to recommend to them what else there is to watch. It is crucial that networks deploy OTT apps that are constantly analyzing user preferences, and presenting them with recommendations pointed at content within the app, or other apps within the network’s family. To do this networks will have to ensure their apps are interconnected, sharing each other’s user’s preferences and promoting one another through recommendations. By doing so a network can protect itself from being dumped and assume its place among OTT royalty.
How to power a recommendation system across your OTT apps
Unreel.me builds OTT apps across every platform with a focus on networks. Using Unreel, networks are able to launch custom interconnected OTT apps across all platforms for every brand in their portfolio. Each of these apps will be able to recommend content from one another to users based on users preferences. Unreel is already working with some of the largest networks in the world to power their OTT solutions with a powerful recommendation engine.