European broadcasters target younger, more affluent audiences with VOD | Media Analysis | Business
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Even though it does not expect their ad funded online video revenue to offset the systematic decline in linear advertising revenue in the near term, an Ampere Analysis study has revealed European broadcasters are no longer playing catch-up when it comes to first run VOD content.
Ampere VOD 20July2020
The study revealed how broadcaster video-on-demand (BVOD) services are evolving to match the demands from their younger audiences who have been at the forefront of viewers’ migration from linear TV. It found fundamentally that across Europe BVOD users were generally younger and more affluent than those of linear television, a dynamic which has contributed to an increase in digital-only commissions.

Over the last year, commercial broadcasting revenue has been in decline across major Western European markets—even before the first impact of Covid-19 on the ad market was felt—while digital ad funded content revenue has grown. Therefore, said Ampere, investment in online services is essential to ensure that commercially funded groups can offset the declines in broadcast revenue Ampere expects as a result of the ongoing online viewing transition.

“BVOD platforms were initially designed for TV catchup viewing, but in recent years broadcasters have been investing in technical enhancements and original content to beef up their services to attract a young demographic,” observed Ampere Analysis senior analyst Léa Cunat. “Although a degree of uncertainty remains regarding return to business and advertisers’ confidence, Ampere’s outlook for BVOD revenue growth is positive. We anticipate that the shift to digital marketing will be accelerated if the behaviours consumers have adopted during lockdown persist following the reopening of economies.”

The report revealed that the UK is Europe’s leading BVOD market, although the most popular service is BBC iPlayer which is ad-free. ITV Hub, All4 and My5 are the leading ad supported platforms in the local BVOD market with a heavy focus on catch-up, although Channel 4’s platform All4 continues to promote a deep catalogue of boxsets. Meanwhile across the English Channel, 30% of France Télévisions' upcoming shows are destined for VOD, with high-profile commissions for digital platform France.tv including Louis XXVIII, a sci-fi drama set in an alternate universe in which the French Revolution never happened.