Getting a wider audience: OTT players bask in the domino effect of integrated efforts

As subscribers started increasing for major OTT platforms, crucial integrated efforts were planned — deeper and wider connectivity, ease of surfing a platform, among others.
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We all know what OTT Platforms are now that they have become mainstream entertainment platforms for international content, Bollywood, originals, news, sports, music etc;. Let’s talk about what is integrated efforts.

An integrated effort denotes a working structure that combines various cross-channel strategies that involve creating consistent innovations/experiences across different platforms to provide a cohesive experience to the customer.

Having an awareness of integrated efforts allows a company to create a multi-pronged strategy that targets wider audiences.

There was once a time when Shruti from Lucknow had her daily activities planned. College, fun with friends, movie nights, weekends full of lunches, dinners, and house parties. Then arrived the pandemic-induced lockdown when all her activities came to a standstill. With literally nothing to do apart from attending online lectures and surfing the internet, she opted for OTT content for respite from the harsh reality and loneliness. 

Just like Shruti, the world got into a cultural shift with 2020, cultivating new habits tailored to the ‘new normal’.

It reminds me of 1983 when India, a country that prides itself on food made fresh from scratch and served hot, saw a paradigm cultural shift brought by Maggi that offered instant noodles in two mins. I feel that is the level of a paradigm shift we are seeing with OTT in the world of entertainment. 

As the subscriber base started increasing for major OTT platforms, crucial integrated efforts were planned exclusively for OTT and digital space right from deeper and wider data connectivity, government’s digital initiatives, ease of surfing the platform, enticing consumers with great offers and pricing, and relatable content pipeline with unique narratives.

On the other hand, snackable short videos, social media campaigns, influencer marketing, and seamless product integrations became the order of the day for marketing and brand solutions.

Over the last year, OTT players have enjoyed the domino effect from the cultural shift attracting substantial revenues from brand integrations across the platform and its social media extensions.

With Internet Service Providers and telecom companies working in partnerships with OTT platforms to address the sheer consumer demand, OTT is here to stay, especially since India’s digital consumer base is the second largest in the world and is still growing to encompass the future of viewing content.

What’s more, this comprehensive digital model is gradually narrowing the divide between India and Bharat while bringing the benefits of technology to all segments of people. The top six metros contribute only 11 percent to India’s OTT universe, as per the Ormax report. 

This widening reach of digital allows brands to collaborate with entertainment platforms at still lower costs than other mediums. While the revenue model is still evolving, relatability and timing could prove fruitful for both partners. 

Then comes the crucial point for any platform; are the young minds of the country available here? Since it’s a digital adoption initiative, young and like minded are the low hanging fruit but more than that to attract the younger minds, OTT platforms are also integrating interactive gaming with video content to bring a dynamic shift to the content offering.

Online live streams are another way for Gen Z and milennials to express themselves. According to a Neilson report, 63 percent of people aged 18–34 consume live streaming content regularly. Video and social commerce is already at almost 15 percent of the ecommerce industry of India, and ecommerce itself is expected to reach $99 billion by 2024 in India. Therefore, the right brands fitting in with the content on OTT players will prove to be a game changer.

Creating unique and larger than life original content is currently what OTT platforms are adopting to map their audience and brand demand.

However, that’s just one aspect to address the subscriber churn. Other than creating relevant stories, OTT platforms need to make constant breakthroughs and steadily innovate to stay in the game.

Every OTT platform knows that it would continue to revel in this domino effect of growth in subscriber numbers only as long as they keep evolving with new market trends whether its VR, AI, gamification, consumer centric WhatsApp messages, quirky PNs, moment under the sun for consumers, recommendation engines, voice search, quicker and easier payment options (onsite and offsite), cashback, etc., that will help serve audiences better and engage deeper.

In conclusion, constant innovations to keep up with lightning fast digital evolution path that India is in is the only way to ensure a platform's ongoing success and brand relatability. Keeping sharp tabs on everything right from marketing to pricing to tech innovations to content is and always will be the way forward.

Edited by Saheli Sen Gupta

(Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of YourStory.)