By Yana Yelina
With $21.7 billion market worth in 2018, video on demand (VoD) is becoming a strategic element of the global video environment. And considering the fact most consumers around the world use their mobile phones to watch videos, having a VoD mobile app is seen as a competitive advantage for particular businesses.
Who Should Bet on VoD?
The first ones on the list of those who need a VoD app are broadcasters of series, movies, and TV shows. Why? Users have changed their viewing habits. Now they prefer VoD to traditional TV. 80% of global respondents who use on-demand content say they watch movies, followed by on-demand TV programs (50%).
Sport is another niche for VoD content. And those who can benefit from it include sports federations, tournament and club owners — by offering access to an extensive library of video material. It could be training session footage, finished matches and highlights, analytical previews, draw procedures, press conferences, and more.
No matter the sphere you’re in, you may also need VoD for internal uses. For example, VoD content might be instrumental in training employees.
What Are the Benefits?
If you’re still in doubt about whether to build a VoD mobile app or not, here are the possible benefits to help make up your mind.
The most obvious way to increase the bottomline with your app is to adopt one of these monetization approaches:
- SVOD. With subscription VoD, users have unlimited access to your content by paying a flat rate per certain period, usually month. You give viewers greater flexibility, i.e. they can opt for a particular package and unsubscribe when they want. The only disadvantage is that you may be challenged with retaining customers. Netflix and Eurosport Player are among the apps with SVOD functionality.
- TVOD. If you choose transactional VoD, your clients will have to buy video on a pay-per-view basis. Here, you have two options: give permanent access to a piece of content, once purchased, or rent it for a certain period. Also, you can vary the price for content based on quality. iTunes is one of the apps that uses such a revenue model.
- AVOD. Capitalizing on the ad-supported VoD approach means gaining revenue from ad insertion. You’re paid by ad agencies or directly by brands — in turn, viewers can relish content for free. If you decide to bet on AVOD, mind that mid-roll commercials have the highest completion rate as opposed to pre-roll and post-roll ads. Here’s how YouTube leverages both video and text ads.
Depending on your business needs, you can adopt a hybrid approach, i.e. combine two or three models. If you want to raise the bar and get additional revenue streams, pack your VoD app with live streaming functionality.
No matter the revenue model you choose for your VoD mobile app, viewers will have to sign up and share their personal data to purchase video. And here’s how you can make the most out of this.
Think integration with a business intelligence solution that will gather and analyze that data — in compliance with relevant privacy rules, including GDPR — to deliver advanced customer analytics: demographics, locations, lifestyle preferences, payment methods, and more.
With such information at your fingertips, you can better target audiences, accurately predict customer behavior, and drive client loyalty.
Another challenge you’re successfully addressing with customer intelligence is user engagement. Once you’ve learnt more about your viewers’ interests, it will be much easier for you to deliver personalized offerings and recommendations, retain existing users, and attract even more traffic to your video content, which is all good for the wallet.
For key players in sports, having a VoD mobile app also means drawing more attention to a tournament or a club. Latest highlights, hot shots, virtual tours around sports stadiums and museums, TV channels — opportunities for fan engagement are endless.
What Else to Keep in Mind?
Now, when you’re sure you need a VoD mobile app to reap all the benefits mentioned above, it’s time to get down to work. Whether you decide to outsource custom software development services or build the solution in-house, pay particular attention to the following aspects:
- Security. To purchase your exclusive content, users will have to share their banking account information. To avoid being part of alarming financial fraud stats, make sure your app complies with all the relevant security standards, such as PCI DSS and FFIEC.
- Robustness. Your app’s backend should be robust enough to successfully deal with a great number of simultaneous users navigating through the video library. The optimal way to make sure of this is to load-test the app.
- Usability. If you don’t want your app to be deleted after a couple of uses, don’t make common usability mistakes. These include long and complicated registration forms, poor search functionality, infinite scrolling, and others.
Yana Yelina is a Technology Writer at Oxagile, a provider of custom software development services. Her articles have been featured on ITProPortal, Business2Community, UX Matters, and Datafloq, to name a few. Yana is passionate about the untapped potential of technology and explores the perks it can bring businesses of every stripe. You can reach Yana at firstname.lastname@example.org or connect via LinkedIn or Twitter.