What the consumer wants will shape the landscape of the imminent “streaming wars.” The vast array of new (or at least new to the individual) content available to stream at any given moment across each streaming platform is insurmountable.
However, the streaming wars might be a misnomer. Consumers are willing to not only keep their current subscriptions, but are likely to add more to the lineup. Of course, the streaming companies themselves want to each be number one, but they don’t need to fight for the consumers’ affection too hard since the consumer is willing to sign up for multiple streaming services if the price is right.
According to the Nielsen Total Audience Report, 60% of Americans subscribe to at least one video streaming service, with 93% claiming they would add to what they already subscribe to, or keep their existing subscriptions. So what factors do consumers consider when deciding to keep their services, and add more?
Cost, naturally, is the most important consideration. Consumers also added that ease of use, variety of content, streaming quality, speed, accessibility, availability across devices, skipping ads (or ad free), content available to download to watch offline and menu recommendations also come into what would make them keep the services they already subscribe to.
The reasons consumers would add additional streaming services include expanding content that’s available, watch programs of beloved television favorites not available elsewhere, to watch a new program they have heard about, to access original content exclusive to the platform, to replace more expensive television services, flexibility of cancellation policy and to access live content (among other reasons, but you get the idea).
In all, streaming services are at war with retaining and obtaining new consumers to subscribe and less at war with being the best. It’s more about getting consumers to subscribe to watch your content, and less about making sure they only subscribe to your content.
“If you build it, they will come.” Consumers will flock to the good content that piques their interest, so it’s up to streaming services to keep cranking out the good content that meets consumers’ interests.