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Tareq Abu-Lughod

Online spending rises 39pc as streaming services take over

DUBAI, July 19, 2022

Online consumer spending increased 39% year on year to hit $6.2 billion this year during Ramadan, research shows.
 
A recent content market webinar hosted by the Dubai International Content Market has shown that constant change is nothing new in the media environment as it has long experienced changes in consumption, target audience and viewership in general. 
 
Ramadan, however, completely reconstructs the typical viewer behaviour with regard to material intake as it recorded a significant impact on how current media forms evolved and developed, making it more challenging for content enthusiasts to predict how consumers will behave over the upcoming months of Ramadan.
 
Viewership rises
Commenting on the increase of viewership during the holy month, Peter Mrkic, Chief Commercial Officer at Intigral  shared: “Jawwy TV’s overall performance was phenomenal in Ramadan this year as we recorded a significant growth in the number of subscribers compared to previous years along with double digit growth in the number of active viewers and overall viewership hours. Our data shows that live TV consumption would peak around Iftar time between 6 pm and 8 pm, whereas VoD content was more frequently streamed between midnight and Sohour time. Accounting for the majority of total viewership time, our linear content resonated mostly with viewers from all ages, with Jawwy’s TV bringing numerous family-friendly programs for all family members to enjoy.”
 
On the other hand, Tareq Abu-Lughod, Co-Founder and CEO of Istikana highlighted the different approach some services might be using: “Ramadan is a high consumption season for traditional 30-episode drama series. Most platforms line-up a number of titles on a catch-up basis (after TV) for their audience which also provides convenience.”
 
 
Change is key
Ramadan offers content sellers and buyers a golden opportunity to connect with highly engaged, addressable consumers that are ready to make purchases. Increased video consumption during this time promotes engagement.
 
This can also go back to the time of the pandemic, as the world experienced a major lockdown which resulted in families and individuals bonding over online broadcasting services such Netflix, Amazon Prime, Hulu, SHAHID, STARZPLAY, WatchIT and the list goes on. 
 
This resulted in the improvements of these platforms as they saw a huge demand for quality content that accommodates the new generations. Social media channels also witnessed a major rise in the duration of consumption as users have been using social media more frequently which is  a clear indication that millennials are more vocal on these networking apps and are seeking content that they can relate to.
 
Mrkic stated: “With our commitment to our strategy which prioritises our audiences and their needs, we have been making significant progress in meeting their demands. To illustrate, a recently conducted survey revealed a high brand satisfaction rate of 78% with users saying they are likely to continue using the service due to content quality, ease of use and great value for money.”
 
He added: “By listening to our customer base, we strategically expand our library of movies, shows, and programs from diverse genres and multiple content providers. Additionally, we now have our streaming service available through a wide range of devices, from smartphones, tablets, and PCs, to numerous smart TVs and gaming consoles. Such strategies have significantly contributed to enhancing our value proposition, allowing Jawwy TV to become the preferred entertainment App during Ramadan this year.”
 
Target audience needs
During Ramadan, streaming services successfully identified their target audience and generated key online behavioural insights which assisted them in building strong creatives and achieve effective broadcasting plans which resulted in improved engagement with their audiences.
 
In the past, content marketers have missed out on many opportunities as they centred their media campaigns around themselves rather than the ones who will be watching, but nowadays, content creators on streaming services are focusing on listening to what the new generation wants and how can they deliver to these users who are considered a huge portion of the viewers.
 
“According to our data, young adults (25 – 28 years) comprise the largest demographic of our viewership owing to the wide variety of the latest titles that resonate with them. We have more than 200 live TV channels and a continuously expanding library of more than 28,000 Arabic and Western titles, curated through partnerships with more than 30 content providers such as MBC, OSN, Fox, Wide Khaliji, Starz Play, Discovery and Shahid VIP. In addition to bringing popular and in-demand content for younger generations to enjoy, Jawwy TV delivers top-quality streaming and video quality through an attractive and easy-to-use interface where all viewers can make the most of a one-stop-shop with one subscription that provides access to all their favourite content,” stated Mrkic.
 
A dedicated marketplace
Needless to say, while satellite channels have delivered programs like these to millions of Arabic speakers for decades, streaming platforms are definitely on the rise, that’s why the Dubai International Content Market, E-Ramadan Content Market and the Content Market Webinars offer global and regional media and entertainment companies the opportunity to expand their business, showcase new content and services, meet with key end-users and buyers, develop partnerships and increase visibility and sales within the Middle-East, Africa and beyond.-- TradeArabia News Service
 



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