Save your FREE seat for Streaming Media Connect this August. Register Now!

How to Buy an OTT Solution: Is There One to Rule Them All?

Article Featured Image

When it comes to OTT, I’ve said it before: Buyer beware. In 2009, Streaming Media was tracking about 95 different online video platforms (OVPs) in a crowded market that was driving margins down to the breaking point only a company like Walmart would be satisfied with. Soon after, we saw a major drop-off and another plunge in the online video industry.

But like the Phoenix it’s always been, our industry reinvented itself, rising from the ashes with an entirely new quest to rule the over-the-top supply chain. I’ve never really been a fan of the term “over-the-top”; as others have pointed out, it implies something sneaky. Maybe a few years ago the idea of a legitimate, subscription-based internet service challenging traditional TV broadcast was taken about as seriously as a Hobbit bringing down Sauron, but many—and I do mean many—vendors figured it would be a good idea to rebrand themselves as OTT solutions. Why? Partly to capitalize on a trend, but also to differentiate their value proposition and target market. The only problem was, there wasnt much of a market to sell to. We are talking about a situation of over 100 companies chasing 10-15 potential clients who didnt want to disrupt their revenue model with experimentation.

So what happened? Our industry declined. Money dried up; sales were scarce. Several companies didnt survive or simply sold their business (on the cheap) to others. But as J.R.R. Tolkien wrote, Not all those who wander are lost.

Then, something wonderful happened last year. Netflix announced it was bringing in more subscription revenue than HBO, and as if a magical ring had been thrown into it, the OTT volcano erupted. Demand from the buyer side sparked an infusion of dollars back into our humble shire. The occupants of Mordor needed to get their OTT solutions up and running or suffer the fate. So here we are in yet another spike for the online video industry—and this time it’s a buyersmarket, not a speculators’ market.

Of course, one does not simply walk into Mordor, and there are dangers lurking at every turn. There are plenty of companies out there offeringOTT solutions, and as you sign that check to one of them with a shaking hand because your job is on the line, be sure that its a company you can trust your business to.

How can Streaming Media help? Yet again, with one of our Superguides, a collection of content brought to you by companies which want to earn your business and your trust. And thats what the Superguides are all about: giving you unique perspectives directly from those who have built platforms and tools that specialize in making your OTT business a success. Theres a range of company sizes and focuses, and I hope you consider them all. As Lady Galadriel said to Frodo Baggins, Even the smallest person can change the course of the future.

Download this Superguide here, and more Superguides at: http://www.streamingmedia.com/Superguides

This article is Sponsored Content

Streaming Covers
for qualified subscribers
Subscribe Now Current Issue Past Issues
Related Articles

The Coming OTT Bundle Horse Race: Which Will Consumers Choose?

It's Sling TV versus PlayStation Vue versus others that haven't come out yet. Watch as the media pits them against pay TV and each other.

Search, Recommendation, and Curation: Attract and Keep Viewers

Discover how six companies are working to solve the challenges of search, recommendation, and curation to connect viewers with the content they want to see.

How to Stream a Live Event

The 2015 Live Event Streaming Superguide Is Now Available

Streaming Media East '15: Get Personal to Stand Out from the OTT Crowd

Analytics, discoverability, recommendation, and personalization are the keys to OTT success, according to a presentation at Streaming Media East in New York.

OTT and the Challenge of Live-Linear Channels

A new survey from Unisphere Research, Streaming Media, and Transitions, Inc.—sponsored by Level 3 Communications—shows that live events and live linear channels are becoming as important as VOD, and outlines shifts in both acquisition and delivery.

Streaming Media East '15: The Power of the Niche

Instead of trying to be the next Netflix, these successful OTT publishers are narrowing their focus and profiting from passionate audiences.

NAB 2015: Winning the Next Generation of Viewers with OTT Services

OTT services are experimenting with business models, multiscreen delivery, and content packages to appeal to the growing number of viewers who are looking for alternatives to traditional pay TV offerings.

NAB 2015: Should the FCC Regulate OTT Video Providers Like MVPDs?

In a spirited NAB panel discussion, an FCC commissioner and four industry experts debated the pros and cons of regulating online video services.

How to Package Video for Multiscreen Delivery

The video landscape is vast and fractured, so making sure that video plays on every screen requires careful planning. Here's what publishers need to know.

The Changing Face of DRM: Where Do We Stand in 2015?

Digital rights management is more important than ever. Here's a look at the options available and how they can help you protect and monetize your content.