A study titled ‘surviving COVID-19 and beyond: A consumer perspective part 2’ conducted by the Velocity MR, a research agency stated that more than 40% of respondent agreed to have taken new DTH/TV subscription as the lockdown continued for a month. While Amazon Prime witnessed a growth of 67% on subscriptions, Netflix saw a 65% growth.
These values represent how the lockdown made differences to the way people consumed the content on over the top video streaming platforms. The pan India survey states that almost all major OTT video streaming platforms saw hulking growth in their social video subscribers.
Often the natural disasters, economic crisis, uncalled long-tail happenings lead to speeding of many other distinctly related trends, intensify industries, transform business ecosystem that was sustained by balanced economies. History repeats itself with the coronavirus pandemic surmounting to sudden lockdowns world-wide that in turn altered the growth of different businesses.
Growth of the OTT market during COVID-19 pandemic
The pandemic emergency has put an impact on consumer behaviour worldwide due to which their interest and preferences have changed drastically. There is a substantial rise in consumption of content on over the top video streaming and SVOD platforms due to many reasons.
Apart from the heavy promotion of pay-TV subscriptions, OTT services and adaptation of e-sports, government agencies have limited movement during lockdown hence people have resorted to these entertainment sources as they are easily accessible & are available on demand.
To be specific here, the global OTT business has seen a whopping 55% at a compound annual growth rate during the last year. The $104.11 Billion market value in 2019 is slowly growing and is expected to make around $161.37 Billion in 2020 due to the COVID-19 lockdowns. This massive shift of consumers from the traditional broadcasting services to the video-on-demand (VOD) platforms is the main reason for the continuous efforts of brands in the development of these cloud-based SVOD platforms. These will drive a gigantic share of viewership & subscription leading to heightened growth in the existing market in the near future.
As respective governments announced the sequential lockdowns to control the spread of the viral disease so as to curb deaths, people migrated their sources of entertainment. Factors such as loss of employment, confinement in households, available leisure time and comforts of the work from home mode at few offices added to the cause as people spent more time on digital media thus having increased screen time.
The functioning of video streaming platforms
Emerging and leading media agencies and service providers are at the verge of running out ideas to generate OTT services as well as e-sports facilities due to amplified world-wide demand for the content, video, music etc. Demand for delivery of high-quality output along with relevant content specifically to suit the niche category audience has made it a tough challenge for small content creators.
The above-mentioned study involved a stratified sample size of around 3000 respondents who were analysed to get an overall, general understanding of consumer sentiments. Nearly 73% of the sample stated that they consumed largely on YouTube and Hotstar content in comparison to the other platforms. While Disney owned Hotstar saw a 41% rise in subscriptions, Google’s YouTube had a 46% increase in it.
These OTT service providers are well supported by payment gateways that ease the accessibility of the content publishers by ensuring a safe stage for subscription purchasing. The platforms with their mobile application system not just make the video streams handy for customers but also help creators customize the content to monetize it properly. The inApp options broaden the horizons for any creator or customer and make the video content available across multiple devices & networks for a better viewing experience over the old systems.
When on one side we may not miss on the fact that this growth is uncertain and unlikely to sustain post normalcy but we can neither ignore the exponentially rising popularity of the OTT platforms.
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