6 Ways OTT TV Has Changed the Way Audiences Discover New Content

Over-the-top (OTT) media has revolutionized the way audiences interact with content. With so many streaming platforms available, audiences have access to a larger library than ever before. With OTT TV giving them so many choices, we're seeing audiences exercise their new freedom. Options like personalized recommendations, social media, and pricing have all changed the way audiences find new content.

6 Ways OTT TV Has Changed the Way Audiences Discover New Content

1. Personalized Recommendations

Algorithms collect data like viewing history to learn what a person likes to watch. Platforms use that information to show audiences personalized recommendations. Many people will go through their recommendations for a long period of time, finding this to be their own form of entertainment.

This changes the playing field a lot for content creators, who can better target their programming to reach the right people. An independently made documentary about elephants will be shown to audiences who watch big-budget documentaries on the same. In the past, a small-budget project had little hope of reaching wide audiences in such a way.

2. Social Media

Because OTT content is on demand, it's easy for social media users to drop a link to their favorite new video. It's also easy for content creators to post links to their projects, promoting them directly to their audience. Audiences discover new content from the creators directly and from their friends recommending them online.

3. Niche Content

If you're really into nature documentaries, you can search every streaming platform to find that content. You can search through social media to see what people recommend and follow creators to see what they are making next.

Traditional television made it difficult for audiences to find more niche content that they could watch whenever they wanted. Someone who loved nature documentaries had to purchase an entire cable package just to put on Discovery Channel. Then, they had to wait for that show to be on. Now, audiences can find exactly what they want and creators can connect with them to keep that content coming.

4. Pricing

Audiences used to have to purchase a large package of channels, even if they only really wanted to watch one. This kind of pricing package irritated many. Today, audiences have a lot of choices when it comes to pricing, and this can influence how they find new content.

For example, many streaming platforms offer free content with ads, and this appeals to people who would rather not pay. They will get on these platforms and dig through recommendations to find their newest favorite. Then there are people who buy into a subscription plan and will stay loyal. Content creators reach these audiences by being on as many platforms as possible.

5. Scheduling and Device Flexibility

It used to be that you had to watch television in your living room on your television. This meant you were confined to watching content at a time when you could be there. So if you were only there at 8:00 pm on a Thursday, then your viewing choices were narrowed to whatever aired at that time. Today, streaming content has opened a wide world of flexibility in terms of scheduling.

There are still live-streaming events, but even these are usually viewable at a later date. With streaming content, audiences can watch from any device wherever they are at the time. Sports fans in Nebraska can watch a game happening live in Germany while they're riding the bus home from work. A New Yorker can open their app and discover a Turkish sitcom that they heard about on a podcast that morning.

6. Shelf Life

OTT media has made it easy to find the hot new thing that's just been uploaded. Many platforms will highlight the new content and give it a push to help it reach the right people. It has also made it easy for audiences to find a creator and then watch their entire backlist. This has meant that a piece of content from ten years in the past can suddenly become popular.

Audiences now expect to be able to find niche content that appeals directly to them. They want it to be well-optimized for their chosen device and easy to watch. This opens new opportunities for content creators and advertisers to reach audiences, but it's also created a learning curve. Contact Lightcast today to request a free consultation from one of our Streaming Media Consultants.