Research: OTT in 64% US homes

Market research and consulting company Parks Associates has released its updated list of the top 10 subscription over-the-top (OTT) video services in the US market, based on estimated number of subscribers. Netflix, Amazon, and Hulu continue to hold the top three slots, with HBO Now and Starz moving into the top five.

1. Netflix
2. Prime Video Users (Amazon Prime)
3. Hulu (SVoD)
4. HBO Now
5. Starz
6. MLB.TV
7. Showtime
8. CBS All Access
9. Sling TV
10. DirecTV Now

“Which company is the leading OTT video subscription service remains a topic of debate,” said Brett Sappington, Senior Director of Research, Parks Associates. “According to our estimates, Amazon has more Prime Members than Netflix has subscribers. However, when you consider only those Prime Members that use Prime Video, Netflix is the largest. Hulu remains the third largest but continues to grow its subscriber base.”

The firm notes the rise of a second tier of OTT video services from services with recognised brands, including several with high profile original content. Online pay-TV services Sling TV and DirecTV NOW round out the top ten, ahead of similar services Hulu with Live TV, YouTube TV, and PlayStation Vue. Online pay TV has been one of the fastest growing segments in the OTT video space, with aggressive marketing by all.

“HBO, Starz, Showtime, and CBS All Access demonstrate the powerful attractiveness of original content through series like Game of Thrones and Star Trek: Discovery,” Sappington said. “This pattern suggests new services such as WarnerMedia’s DC Universe and the forthcoming streaming service from Disney could achieve success quickly.”

The top subscription sports OTT video services are MLB.TV, WWE Network, and ESPN+. MLB.TV continues to lead the sports OTT subscription category, benefiting from its long tenure as a streaming service and popularity among dedicated baseball fans. WWE also has a dedicated fan base and publicly reported having over 1.2 million US subscribers at the end of Q3 2018. ESPN+ is a newcomer to the OTT video marketplace but recently announced that it had exceeded 1 million subscribers.

Additional data from Parks Associates’ OTT Video Market Tracker, which tracks the content offerings, business strategies, and subscription numbers for OTT services in North America:

– OTT video subscription penetration has reached 64 per cent of US broadband households. Over two-thirds subscribe only to one of the top three services, Netflix, Prime Video, or Hulu.
– The online pay-TV audience is similar to the OTT audience—they are younger and quicker to adopt new technologies when compared to traditional pay-TV households.
– Over the past three years, OTT churn rates have gradually fallen each year from 31 per cent of OTT subscriptions cancelled each year in 2015 to 28 per cent in 2018.

read more here: advanced-television.com

Ad Revenue Growth Predicted To Rise 3.7% In 2017

Global ad growth will slow in 2017 to 3.7%, with total advertising revenues reaching $511 billion, according to Interpublic Group’s Magna.
By comparison, Magna estimates that 2016 ad revenue grew at a stronger 5.7% pace, reaching $493 billion. Magna states the slower rate of growth is attributable to lack of cyclical events such as the Olympics and major political campaigns that added $3.5 billion in incremental ad spend last year.

Advertisers are reallocating their budgets. Digital-based ad sales will grow double-digits to become the top media category in 2017, Magna asserted, surpassing linear TV ad sales for the first time ($70 billion vs. $67 billion for national and local).

2016 was the first year when digital ad sales finally surpassed total linear television.

This shift took place years ago in many other countries analyzed by Magna — such as 10 years ago in the UK and two years ago in China. The fact it happened in 2016 in the U.S. is a testimony to the strength and resilience of television in America: “linear TV is losing viewers but remains attractive enough to national advertisers that they are — so far — willing to tolerate high CPM inflation to try and maintain their investment in the medium,” says the report.

Digital-based ad sales are approaching 40% of total sales in 2017 and projected to reach 50% by 2021. Magna found social and search captured the bulk (95%) of digital dollar growth in 2016: $10.5 billion out of $11 billion total net growth.

Social video was one of the key drivers in 2016, and this will continue in 2017 with the main social media networks competing to offer ever more video content to their users, including some premium content through partnerships with television and major sports leagues.

This will allow social media vendors — Facebook, Snap, Twitter — to offer new innovative video ad formats to advertisers, such as ads in live social streams, like the Facebook Video app on OTT. Driven by this continued video push, Magna expects social video ad sales to double again in 2017 to reach more than $4 billion dollars, or a third of total U.S. digital video ad sales, and 20% of total social media ad sales.

“While total marketing budgets are flat, the main driver of advertising growth at the moment is below-the-line direct marketing budgets (e.g. direct mail) being re-allocated towards Search and Social by big and small businesses,” stated Vincent Létang, EVP global market intelligence, Magna. “Most of the net advertising dollar growth will be taken from traditional direct marketing budgets rather than new marketing spend.”

U.S. advertising sales grew by nearly 6.6% this year to $180 billion, which Magna asserted was the strongest growth in six years, and it’s a new all-time high for U.S. ad dollars.

read more here:

https://www.mediapost.com/publications/article/298217/ad-revenue-growth-predicted-to-rise-37-in-2017.html?edition=101838

US now a “binge watching, streaming, multitasking nation”

Nearly three-quarters (73%) of US consumers and nearly 90% of millennials have watched binged video content, according to the findings of Deloitte’s 11th Digital Democracy Study.

Furthermore, almost 40% of millennial and Gen Z binge watchers do so weekly and they watch an average of six hours, or five hours of content, in a single sitting.

The study found that the device of choice for key demographics remains split: Gen Z and millennials spend about half their time watching television shows and movies on devices other than a TV. Additionally, Gen X favours the TV by over 60% and Baby Boomers watch over 80% of programming on the TV. Also, nearly all (99%) of millennials and Gen Z are multitasking while watching TV, averaging four additional activities, such as texting, browsing the web, using social networks, reading email and online shopping.

Almost half (49%) of US consumers and nearly 60% of Gen Z, millennials and Gen X subscribe to at least one paid streaming video service. However, the survey notes that despite the growth of paid streaming services, US consumers spend more time streaming video via free services (40%) than paid streaming subscriptions (35%).

In terms of advertising, 67% of consumers, and over 70% of Gen Z and millennials, find mobile ads on their phone to be irrelevant. However, 37%of consumers find it valuable to receive location-based ads on their smartphone and use them regularly.

More than 80% of consumers will skip an online video ad if allowed, while almost half (46%) pay more attention to an ad they can skip versus an ad they cannot skip.

Almost half (45%) of millennials use ad-blocking software, with 89% of the group saying their primary reason is to avoid all advertising. In fact, 40% of them also noted use of ad-blocking software on their smartphones.

Online recommendations on social media (27%) are more influential than TV ads (18%) for Gen Z in influencing buying decisions.

read more here:
http://www.broadbandtvnews.com/2017/03/23/us-now-a-binge-watching-streaming-multitasking-nation/