OTT through a broadcast lens

August 27, 2014 richardscott2

At a recent customer meeting, “why is multi-screen limited to OTT?” was one of the questions. My answer? It doesn’t need to be. And for this broadcast customer it definitely shouldn’t be. Let me share some of the themes from the meeting.

Why start from scratch? 
This established broadcast player has a strong DTH brand with a large loyal customer base. And like many, wanted to retain their subscribers by setting up an OTT service that would tick the “multi-screen” box. Makes sense – right?
But let’s be honest, would your OTT service have the same draw as heavyweights like Netflix? And will your OTT service detract from your brand, with a different look and feel? Perhaps building a multi-screen service leveraging what you already have on broadcast is a better move.

Think literally “multi-screen”
Content on multiple screens, at home or on the go, is at the heart of the seamless viewing experience. And that is exactly what operators should strive for. You’re ideally placed to move people between screens. For instance: live sports on the smartphone when you are rushing home. Switching to the big TV screen once there, and using the smartphone now for sports stats. Give consumers access to what they want, when they want it. It should only be the screen size that changes. Regardless of the delivery mechanism.

Personalize, Personalize, Personalize 
Personalization and seamless viewing experience go hand in hand. Take the music industry. Spotify’s “my content” provides instant access to my favorites along with recommendations. Easy search and discovery to encourage consumption. Memory between devices will no doubt become a pre-requisite. Of course the style and extent of the personalization would need to vary: from live TV to video on demand, as well as matching content types to the best viewing screen size. Not everything will be possible from day one but an elegant approach to increase personalization as consumer demands evolve will be a differentiator. Using a managed service gives broadcast players the flexibility to quickly experiment, at Internet speed.

Blend multi-screen your way 
For operators like this customer, blending broadcast and OTT into a multi-screen offering makes sense. Both from a consumer perspective and financially. Instead of delivering all 300 DTH channels over satellite, why not use the cheaper OTT service for the niche ones? By using a hybrid STB, consumers simply get what they want, at a click of a button. You could even use home networking to deliver a multi-screen experience easily and economically, even with limited broadband connectivity.
Multi-screen offers broadcast players the ability to

  • Reduce churn and cross promote services
  • Utilize a more cost effective delivery channel
  • Increase engagement and revenue with targeted content and advertising

Why wouldn’t you combine broadcast and OTT for multi-screen? – should have been the question


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