How pay-TV operators can drive revenue with data

It’s been more than a decade since Paul Davenport’s seminal Competing on Analytics taught companies how to redefine and rediscover their competitive advantage. And with the ascent of such data-driven companies as Amazon, Google, Uber and others, it’s becoming apparent that every business is a data business. That includes pay-TV.

A holistic approach to pay TV data analytics
A holistic approach to pay TV data analytics

It’s been more than a decade since Paul Davenport’s seminal Competing on Analytics taught companies how to redefine and rediscover their competitive advantage. And with the ascent of such data-driven companies as Amazon, Google, Uber and others, it’s becoming apparent that every business is a data business.

That includes pay-TV.

The Analytics Imperative in Pay-TV

The pay-TV industry is replete with data of its own, stretching from network uptime in back-office operations to customer satisfaction and churn in the front. And with TV viewing now on-demand, spread across digital devices and driven by recommendation algorithms, pay-TV operators must work smarter than ever to stay relevant and profitable.

“Today’s business environment demands actionable insights delivered at the point of decision, with more speed,” writes industry analyst firm Sense Corp. in The Analytics Imperative for MVPDs. “Analytical insight provides a foundation for more informed investment decisions.”

Boosting revenue should be at the heart of your analytics strategy. Based on what we’ve seen from our most successful customers, here are three places to start right now:

1. Increase relevance to subscribers through meaningful content

In The Analytics Imperative for MVPDs, Sense Corp. Insights also stated, “In the battle to remain relevant and competitive, [pay-TV operators] have a significant opportunity to outflank their competition by unlocking the power of analytics.” You need look no further than Netflix as an example – they continually look at correlations and invest in data-driven creative.

2. Improve up-sell and cross-sell performance to capture underserved markets

Knowing how, when, and where to entice subscribers with new offers poses a significant challenge to pay-TV operators. Fortunately, analytics can help you resolve this challenge. For example: analytics can help you identify those customers most likely to agree to new content or upgraded service based on how they compare to statistical profiles of your most profitable customers. Analytics can also provide insights into their viewing habits and preferences, which can help you identify the best time to present the offer.

3. Build better bundles based on usage patterns

Most pay-TV operators have boosted their core TV offerings with internet and mobile services. Bundling all three into a single offering at a single price point makes it easy for consumers to choose the one that works best for their needs. But what’s the best bundle for your needs? Offering all three services creates a near-infinite interplay among data volumes and speeds, mobile phone calling times, content, features and equipment that’s constantly in flux. By applying analytics to this complex interplay, you can correlate subscriber usage trends with your own profitability to optimize your bundles for higher margins.

Get started now, but think long-term

The smart use of analytics can help organizations better understand the disruptive forces at work in any industry. Likewise, by committing to acting on the insights they gain, they can emerge from disruption in a stronger market position. The key is to aim for short-term wins that contribute to long-term goals.

Jaison Dolvane is president and CEO of Espial. Espial Elevate is a TVaaS video platform that allows operators to manage, deliver and monetize video experiences.

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