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How Cloud Streaming Services Use Analytics to Attract Subscribers and Boost Ad Sales

When consumers access their preferred content from internet-connected devices, they generate a treasure trove of actionable data in the process. Cloud streaming services collecting this information gain insights into the preferences of individual users, engagement patterns with on-platform ads, and much more. By using data analytics, streaming services can leverage this data to expand their existing subscriber base, boost ad revenue, and produce content that aligns with the interests of their subscribers.

Trends Impacting Cloud Streaming Services

As the cloud streaming industry matures, the way consumers prefer to engage with online content and the market forces shaped by those preferences continue to change. There are four powerful trends forcing cloud streaming services to evolve and adapt.

Evolving content consumption preferences

As streaming video and audio platforms have become established, they’ve found a ready audience of cord-cutters, gaining millions of subscribers eager to adopt an easier way to access the content they like. The majority of Americans have the equivalent of a mobile television and music player in their pockets, allowing them to stream their favorite shows, movies, music, and podcasts whenever and wherever they desire. The convenience and affordability offered by cloud streaming services have revolutionized consumer expectations, permanently changing content consumption habits. 

New technologies present opportunities for growth

As the ability to generate valuable data has increased, the technology enabling companies to mine data for valuable insights has advanced as well. Significant gains in artificial intelligence now make it possible for streaming services to more accurately identify and suggest relevant content to individual users based on an array of data points, including on-platform content consumption patterns, social media profile data, and engagement patterns on off-platform channels.

Renewed focus on consumer privacy

The enhanced ability to track and record consumer behavior online has reignited concerns about how that data is collected, stored, and used. Consumer advocacy groups and lawmakers are strongly advocating for new consumer privacy regulations that will upend the current consumer data landscape. Even without legislative mandates, companies are making moves to protect the privacy of consumers using their products. For example, Apple now limits the use of Identifier for Advertisers (IDFA) in iOS apps, and Google has announced that third-party cookies in Chrome will be deprecated in 2023. These changes make it difficult for advertisers to target, measure, and personalize in-app ads using traditional methods. 

The rise of hybrid traditional/streaming media offerings

As major cloud streaming services such as Netflix, Amazon, and Apple continue to grow their subscriber bases and produce their own content offerings, some traditional media companies have taken note. Traditional household names such as Paramount and Disney now offer their own streaming services with access to both new offerings and archived content. The cloud streaming market will only continue to become more crowded as additional players jump on board.

Why Should Cloud Streaming Services Focus on Analytics?

Cloud streaming services have many compelling reasons to make full use of the data available to them. Data-driven companies have a significant competitive advantage due to five key capabilities.

Align new content development with consumer preferences

Popular content is the lifeblood of any successful cloud streaming service. But producing original content is expensive and time-consuming, so it’s vital to know what consumers want before developing new content. Media analytics enables companies to mine massive amounts of on-platform data and data from public and third-party sources to uncover emerging content trends. This information can guide companies to more accurately identify what types of content are likely to grow in popularity. 

Offer more effective targeted advertising opportunities

Streaming services can use data analytics to serve up highly targeted ads. This unprecedented level of personalization can result in a significant boost in ad revenue as advertisers experience the benefits of this micro-targeting approach. Additionally, analytics also provides streaming services an easy way to demonstrate ROI on ad spend. 

Provide alternatives to traditional third-party cookie-based advertising

Consumer privacy initiatives appear likely to end the third-party cookie sooner rather than later. One highly effective alternative is the data clean room. Data clean rooms enable cloud streaming companies to share customer data with advertisers without disclosing personal identifiable information (PII) or compromising consumer privacy. 

Acquire and retain subscribers

Boosting new subscriber acquisition while limiting existing subscriber attrition produces the revenue growth needed to ensure a sustainable business. To accomplish these goals, streaming services must have a deep understanding of the user experience and content offerings that consumers value. Developing this depth of knowledge is possible through creating a 360-degree view of the customer journey by unifying data from a variety of sources. These insights can be used to personalize marketing efforts to attract new subscribers and proactively identify customers most likely to churn.

Monetize data gathered from subscribers

Streaming services are data-generating powerhouses, tracking virtually every action that consumers make on the platform. The activity patterns and content preferences of individual users can be packaged and sold as data products to partner organizations that are eager to supplement their own data and refine their own ad targeting efforts. Snowflake Data Marketplace houses an extensive collection of live, ready-to-query data sets offered by media companies. 

Snowflake for Cloud Streaming Services

When you leverage the Snowflake Data Cloud, it’s simple to overcome fragmented data and facilitate seamless and secure data sharing. Gaining a comprehensive, fully integrated view of your audience allows you to improve content offerings and customer experiences while boosting advertising revenue. Snowflake’s capabilities, specifically designed for advertisers and media companies, enable you to harness the power of data for a sustainable business that’s primed for growth.

See Snowflake’s capabilities for yourself. To give it a test drive, sign up for a free trial