How can you help your streaming service truly stand out?
There’s always room in the market for a good product at a good price. How can you best leverage growth opportunities in the crowded streaming marketplace? To answer, we turn to the classic 5 Ps of marketing, and take a deep dive into how you can apply them to elevate the presence of your service.
The first “P” we’ll start with is Product.
was, is, and always will be king. You don’t have to be the biggest service to have prestigious, crowd-pleasing, or exclusive programming. Consumers gravitate to services with original and/or exclusive content. And it remains vitally important: an October 2020 NPD study
found that one out of five SVOD subscribers had either decreased engagement or cancelled an SVOD service because of better content from another service.
A recent study by Hub Entertainment Research
found that 70% of 16-34 year olds are more interested in shows labeled as 'original.' The same holds true, albeit to a lesser extent, for those aged 35+; 53% of that cohort say they’re more interested in shows described as 'original.' The same Hub study found that one out of three viewers (35%) subscribed to an SVOD to get access to just one title, and again this number was even more pronounced (57%) for young adults aged 16-24.
In addition to your own content, stay aware of when competitors are planning major launches or programming events, and adjust accordingly. Whether you fish where the fish are, or where they aren’t, will depend on what you have to offer, your available marketing resources, and how ardently your existing customers evangelize your service.
How we approach this:
- We use first-party data to evaluate minutes streamed, engagement with organic social promotions, engagement with paid media, episode starts versus completed episodes, etc. Sometimes we find consumers are responding to titles differently than we anticipated or how we allocated marketing spend. Keeping on top of consumer behavior lets us modulate marketing behavior to address any unexpected peaks or valleys.
- We use third-party data to monitor content (titles/series/films) across the competitive landscape and on social media (posts and mentions). We track release dates, announcements, press pickups, etc. Doing so informs both acquisition/scheduling and marketing strategies. Knowing the content and messaging other services regard as valuable, for example, lets us target those interests / audiences in our own marketing. Third party data sources include:
- Social listening tools. Many companies offer suites of these tools, which vary in features and pricing. Some examples are (in alphabetical order) Awario, MeltWater, RivalIQ, Socialbakers, Sprout, and Talkwalker.
- Facebook offers a competitive ads tool which lets us review ads competitors are running (or have run) on the platform.
- Google has free tools including Google Alerts (to track news mentions) and Google Trends (which shows search interest across topics, specific titles, etc.).
- Several services (such as Parks Associates and Parrot Analytics) offer industry-wide data about programming, scheduling, affinity and demand, and more. They make some of this data publicly available, and offer more to subscribers.
In addition to content, the user experience
can be a key point of differentiation, and is directly related to content discoverability. How does viewing experience & UX impact acquisition, retention and overall brand royalty? How can this be used to upsell? Ease of setup, cross-device availability, guide navigation and search, are all examples of how services can attract and retain subscribers.
How we approach this:
- We use in-app analytics, where available, to understand user flow. This lets us identify and resolve any sticking points or obstacles.
- We visualize large data-sets in dashboards or charts. This makes it easier to spot trends, aberrations, and opportunities.
- We use first and third-party data to undertake ongoing user churn and preference analyses. Are specific titles driving conversions? Is the lack of a title causing cancelations? We can feed this information back to our marketing strategies, as well as to our SVOD clients for acquisition considerations.