As streaming platforms continues to grow, we are seeing more industries transition from traditional cable broadcasting to a more sustainable platform that provide “over-the-top” (OTT) content. In the last couple of years, more customers have been cutting their connection to cable TV to a more affordable and flexible TV package like Roku, Apple TV, Netflix, Hulu, etc. In a survey from PWC, 82% of cable customers kept their TV service only because they wanted to keep their sport packages. However, many sport networks have seen the innovation of streaming and how they can personalize each experience to gather more viewers on more available OTT platforms. Streaming has become the new distributor of sport broadcasting from it email, social media, and data analytic services.
If we were to rewind back to 2011, a small website emerged from the growing community of gamers. That website was called Twitch. For a time, Twitch was the must have platform for gameplays, international Esport tournaments, and game reviews. The platform allowed viewers to interact and engaged with content producers that grew the loyalty of viewership within the gaming community. This later expanded to other content outside of gaming, which would later compete with high profile cable networks like Fox, MSNCS, CNN, and ESPN. The flexibility of streaming content to any smart device, allowed apps like Twitch and Amazon to fill a market of customers looking for more affordable and easily accessible content.
Cable companies redundancy for innovation, showed in their second quarter report when more than a million cable and satellite customers dropped their services to streaming apps. Since Hulu added their new package of Hulu live, this allows users access to cable channels but also sport channels. More customers have found that it is cheaper and easy to install their streaming device than their cable counterpart.
Broadcasters are also seeing the benefit of this OTT platform by having access to cheaper and accessible tools to keep old and new viewers. Many of these applications have affordable services and allow more space for broadcaster to push extra content that can be streamed outside of the regular airtime. So, many of these sport events can have multiple sport announcers and reviewers running at anytime that cater to a variety of different viewers. With the variety of content, you can attract more viewers to support more of your content as well as have more opportunity for engagement. For gameplay, many content producer would respond to active chats with viewers creating a relationship with the audience to return to the producer’s channel. With this tool, sport broadcaster can include interviews with athletes, engage in real time with fans, and collect data to expand content. Data can become a huge asset to broadcaster by giving them real time data to know when a viewing is dropping out of the stream and how they are engaging. This data can further improve how we as viewers are experiencing sport events to knowing that it is being personalized to what we want.