How Revry Positioned a Niche OTT Vertical as the 'Global Face of Diversity'
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Damian Pelliccione: In six years since we've launched Revry, the way in which we have distributed our content has vastly changed. We started as a subscription video on demand (SVOD) product. That was before the major streamers entered the LGBTQ+ market in 2016.
We like to call ourselves a tribrid of SVOD, AVOD, and FAST. I think I was the first one to really actually use that phrase. We pivoted away from SVOD. We still have it kind of as legacy we call Revry Premium, but that's really only 5% of our user base. And it's not something that we're really focused on. You're always gonna get outspent by the majors, even if you are a niche vertical, so it's difficult to compete in today's marketplace.
And we feel like it's selling a piece of apparel or a t-shirt or a hat. The value proposition, of course, is that you get to watch without ads, much like Peacock and what Hulu used to be. And of course you get a bigger choice of the library.
But where we're really super-laser-focused in is on the AVOD and FAST market. And actually we were the first LGBTQ channel partner launch on Pluto TV back in 2017. We're no longer on Pluto TV, but we're on every single one of their competitors: Samsung TV Plus, Visio--where we just announced--Fubo, Philo, LG. We're about to announce Peacock, Tubi. There's so many platforms now that have picked up Revry. With Samsung TV Plus we're in eight territories--all the English speaking ones and two non-English speaking ones. They asked us last year if we wanted to go into Mexico with TV Plus and Brazil, and we said, "Hell yeah, let's do it." We had a scale of enough of a library to support that. And we've seen really great returns in those territories because again, we're the only LGBTQ global FAST and AVOD streaming platform.
And really, for us, it's just about expanding that digital footprint into as many different environments focusing now, more on the majors and optimizing the majors, the Roku channels of the world--again, the TV Pluses, the Visio the LGs--mainly because we're seeing the market now start to be dominated by the bigger connected TV manufacturers that sell more sets than the others. And you're starting to see them marketing themselves. So we get to kind of piggyback off of Samsung and Roku channel and everybody who is scaling their own EPGs and evangelizing their own products as the exclusive, only LGBTQ network in these environments.
But what's really interesting is the strategy has started to shift. At first it was about a land grab just to get onto these platforms. In most environments, we at least try to take 50% of the inventory. We like to be able to sell that direct. And you know, some of our advertisers that we work with are McDonald's, Diesel, Nissan, Lexus, tourism boards. There's just so many. We actually won a ton of new clients this Pride season. Happy Pride, everybody! Actually, this is pride month that we're about to enter into.
And so, having access to the inventory and being able to control the inventory is key to our success in our revenue. Because we sell that at premium CPMs between $35 and $50, where, on average, unless you're on a Xumo or a Samsung or a Roku, and you're buying from the platform side where they have their 50%, usually you have to buy across the entire network or all the channels in a genre when they have very high buy-ins, whereas you can go direct through us--buy direct into our audience across the US or globally. And in that case we're able to scale the revenue that way and then package branded content.
One of the biggest things that we are really focused on is, we're leveraging the fact that Revry now commands the largest amount of video ad inventory for this vertical globally, not even domestically, and connected TV, as everyone knows in the ad space, is the premium dominant inventory for any type of advertiser.
But we're trying to match that with more branded content opportunities. And a great example is the work that we're doing with McDonald's, possibly the biggest brand on the planet. I don't think there's anyone that doesn't know what a McDonald's is, right? And last year we won them as a client. It was bagging a whale, as I always say. And it was an amazing, tremendous opportunity. They just underwrote a variety show that we did with them called House of Pride. It was a 60-minute variety show with queer dancers and singers and comedians, a really fun event for Pride that we distributed across all of our networks. We had promised them 5 million views and we did 16 million in 60 days.
That's how ravenous our community is for this content, especially when it's intersectional, and it looks like us. It's diverse, because the great thing about our culture--and I really preface that Revry is about queer culture; we are not one race. We're not one sexual orientation. We're not one gender. We are not one language. And I think that makes us very unique and well positioned to be the face of diversity globally.
Niche OTT streaming services are game-changers for minority audiences such as Black and LGBTQ populations by offering community-building year-round programming that uplifts and celebrates underrepresented lives
2GHTR.co Founder Matt DiLorenzo and Revry's Damian Pelliccione discuss how identifying and responding to the needs of an engaged community helps niche OTT services grow in this clip from their panel at Streaming Media Connect 2022.
Revry co-founder Alia J. Daniels and Frndly founder Bassil El-Khalib discuss what "niche" means as applied to premium OTT services and how the perception that niches are small can make the term misleading for certain target audiences however precisely defined in this clip from their panel at Streaming Medias East Connect 2021.
Revry's Damian Pelliccione and Cinedigm's Erick Opeka offer strategic advice to OTT channels trying to attract an audience and build a brand in this clip from Streaming Media West Connect.