Streaming video has gone wide. This has a trickle down effect leading to the rise of middle market online video streaming, with streaming media services OVPs used as the middle man. Below is an expose written by Anthony Romero published for CosmoReport on this topic.
Streaming has reached that plateau where it’s no longer a tech word: it’s an emerging opportunity. Many stream not only entertainment video, but also informative and educational material. From traditional computers to internet connected TVs and mobile devices, the way to access streaming content is ever increasing. Being driven by the major market, this is an opening opportunity for the middle streaming media services market. Just like it appeals to the mass market, the middle market content producers now have an easier market to tap into.
The streaming market’s major driver is preference and ease of use. In 2011, according to a Research and Markets report, 21.2 billion hours of self-selected streaming content was viewed. This was a sizeable increase of 43.2% from the previous year. Choice is positively affecting the streaming market. The ability to offer a degree of selection in tastes that traditional TV and even DVD might not have catered to.
Accessibility is also a driving factor in the mass adoption of this technology. This includes mobile streaming, offering the simple joy of watching video while on a commute. It also includes increased disruption and more meaningful interactions provided to that content. For example, in 2011, 77.9% of streaming video was classified as UGC (user generated content). Social networks have really driven this as well. The ability to take a stream and share it on Facebook, for example, adds incredible value when coming from a personal contact.
YouTube and its content is a household name unto itself. It has created a market for short form, quickly consumed video content. This format is now living alongside long form and more traditional video content. Short form content can be exciting, having a greater chance to go “viral” and achieve millions of hits. However, there is an active market for both. For example, in 2011, audiences for longer form, professional content were as much as three times that of a comparable short form, UGC content. Part of that has to do with volume, not all videos can be viral, but it also speaks to a mass audience hungry for both.
Companies and even enthusiast broadcasters have long been pondering how to tap into this market and what to do with it. Corporations might sell their video, which might have gone “straight to DVD”, to a streaming market. Independent broadcasters might sell video content using in-player eCommerce methods. These include the built-in player paywall such as that offered by DaCast. Others might try to build networks business models of vast content and then sell large subscriptions. Netflix has had tremendous success with this model. Success is not reserved for companies of this size, though. The market is open where even smaller broadcasters can succeed. A website and a camera are the fundamentals to succeed, although like anything luck plays a factor in going wide. Small companies or even churchs can begin to grow their reputation, driving traffic to their site. Alternatively, broadcasters can earn money directly from their streaming with Pay Per View methods.
Approaches to broadcasting are incredibly diverse, providing consumers a wealth of content. In addition to all that content, consumers now also have a degree of choice never before offered. Middle market, niche broadcasting can tap into this. They can catapult not only their genre, but catapulting what was once a niche technology to something that has become inherently mainstream.
Original Title: How Streaming Will Go Wide
This piece was originally published on April 2nd, 2012. It is preserved online for future reading.
By Anthony Romero.