Original regionally-themed content key to serving Asian audiences | Media Analysis | Business | News | Rapid TV News
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A study from Horowitz Research has shown that as Asian American, Native Hawaiian and Pacific Islander Heritage Month comes to a close, there is an opportunity for media companies to continue to invest in Asian-themed content that is resonant to and inclusive of all Asian cultures.
asian production 31May2023
The FOCUS Asian Volume 1: Subscriptions survey was conducted in January-February 2023 among 500 Asian TV content viewers 18+. Data was weighted to ensure results were representative of the Asian TV universe.

The study found just over six in ten Asian TV content viewers watch Asian-language content at least occasionally, and two-thirds of Asian-language dominant/bilingual consumers say that Asian-language content is important to them. Similarly, 6 in 10 Asian viewers watch international content.

The study noted that Asian Americans have always been on the leading edge of streaming adoption. The data also showed that 61% of Asian TV content viewers were streamers in 2013, compared with 45% of total market and 30% of White, non-Hispanic consumers. Currently, 81% Asian viewers were streamers, and streaming made up almost 6 out of every 10 hours of viewing time among Asians.

Horowitz also noted that subscriptions to SVOD services have remained steady among Asian TV content viewers. Nearly 7 in 10 (69%) Asian viewers subscribe to at least one SVOD, in line with consumers overall, while an additional 14% have access via password sharing or bundling of services. When it came to deciding whether to subscribe to streaming services, access to original and international content is key among Asian viewers. While Asian audiences subscribe to the top SVODs, including Netflix, Amazon Prime Video and Disney+, as well as Asian-targeted and Asian-language SVODs like Rakuten VIKI, OnDemandKorea and ZEE5 were also important.

Usage of free streaming services was found to have tripled among Asian audiences within the past five years. In 2019, only Asian TV content viewers said that they use free streaming services, By this year, this figure has leapt to 68%. Free, ad-supported streaming TV (FAST) services – like YouTube, Tubi, Pluto TV and Samsung TV Plus – were key drivers of free streaming usage. In fact, nearly half (45%) of Asian viewers reported using FAST. This underscores an opportunity to serve the Asian audience with culturally relevant content on these free, ad-supported platforms.

“Clearly, there’s been an explosion in interest in Asian content – driven not only by Asian audiences but audiences in general,” notes Adriana Waterston, insights & strategy lead and executive vice president for the Horowitz Research division of M/A/R/C Research. “As media companies continue to lean into the Asian content opportunity, we anticipate that this will lead to even more varied stories that represent the entirety of Asian experiences, cultures, and communities globally and in the US.”