Subscriber Data Analytics for OTT: 3 Ways to Enhance Retention

Kirstin White | Wed Aug 30 2023 | Industry insights

Preventing churn and enhancing subscriber retention

Subscriber retention is paramount for success. 

It’s not just about securing a steady revenue flow; it's about cultivating a tribe of devoted customers who champion your brand and fuel your long-term growth. 

But let's face it: with so many options at your customers’ fingertips, preventing churn has become a monumental hurdle for OTT providers.

Fortunately, when used properly, subscriber analytics emerges as a powerful tool in combating churn and enhancing subscriber retention.

Leveraging OTT subscriber analytics for churn prevention

Data has been a fundamental part of our world for quite some time, quietly shaping various industries and sectors behind the scenes. However, in recent years, data has truly taken the spotlight and become the buzzword on everyone's lips.

We are now generating and collecting information at an astonishing rate, encompassing everything from online interactions and social media posts to sensor readings and customer transactions — the OTT industry is no exception. 

The wealth of subscriber data generated by user interactions, preferences, and behaviors gives OTT providers invaluable insights into their subscribers' needs and preferences. 

OTT data analytics is only the tip of the iceberg. 

But let’s look at the key metrics you’ll need as your guiding stars in understanding your subscribers. For example: 

  • Acquisition and onboarding metrics shed light on the effectiveness of marketing campaigns, user acquisition channels, and the initial user experience. Understanding these metrics enables providers to optimize their acquisition strategies and ensure a seamless onboarding process that sets the stage for long-term engagement.
  • Engagement and usage metrics act as beacons, illuminating subscriber satisfaction and loyalty paths. By monitoring metrics such as viewing time, content consumption patterns, and feature utilization, providers can gauge the level of engagement and tailor their offerings accordingly. These metrics empower providers to curate personalized experiences, deliver relevant recommendations, and continually enhance user satisfaction.
  • Payment and billing metrics serve as anchors, ensuring a smooth financial journey for subscribers. Providers can identify and address potential pain points in the payment process by monitoring metrics related to successful payments, subscription cancellations, and billing issues. A seamless payment experience instills trust and confidence, reducing the risk of churn caused by billing-related concerns.

Determining the right metrics for your business is an iterative process that depends on various factors, including your goals, industry focus, and specific objectives. 

You may even need to experiment and refine your metrics over time to ensure they accurately reflect your business's success and effectively guide your decision-making.

Read more: Performance Benchmark in OTT Services


Three ways to prevent churn using customer insights

With data abundance comes great knowledge and immense growth potential. 

Data alone doesn't hold much value until it is transformed into meaningful insights and actionable strategies. Data helps uncover hidden patterns, fuel innovation, and drive meaningful change when properly analyzed and harnessed. 

Imagine the power of knowing your subscribers' preferences, behaviors, and desires inside out. 

Remember, having data is only the tip of the iceberg. It's what you do with that data that truly matters. 

Using Data Effectively for Next-Level Subscriber Retention

Here are three ways to use customer insights to prevent churn:


1. Personalize communication to build stronger customer connections

Personalized communication is a powerful strategy for building stronger connections with your subscribers.

By understanding their preferences, behaviors, and needs, you can create targeted and tailored messages that resonate with them on a deeper level. 

The key is to continually analyze subscriber data found in your subscriber data view, adapt your communication strategies, and refine your personalization efforts to meet evolving subscriber needs and expectations. 

Segmenting your subscriber base based on various criteria such as viewing preferences, engagement levels, subscription duration, or demographics allows you to craft more relevant and personalized communication for each segment. 

You can then suggest new content releases, exclusive previews, or personalized playlists tailored to their interests. A personalized approach not only helps increase engagement but also fosters a sense of being understood and valued by your platform. 

Let’s begin by grouping them into two groups — the ones who need a little nudge in activation and the ones who are active. 

For the ones who need activation encouragement, you can: 

  • Create campaigns for inactive subscribers to promote re-engagement
  • Send personalized recommendations to subscribers to pique their interests.
  • Provide anniversary rewards to encourage retention before they succumb to subscription fatigue (more on that in the next section 👇). 

Read more: How did Tennis Channel achieve 640% growth in 5 years?


2. Create targeted communication, retention campaigns, and loyalty programs with rewards for long-term subscribers

In a competitive market with rising subscription fatigue, your subscribers are feeling the pressure of keeping subscriptions to a minimum. 

The decision to keep paying for a subscription or churn boils down to value — the highest one gets to stay. 

What should you do then? 

This is where your subscription retention data comes in handy.

Engage your active subscribers on a deeper level in return for their loyalty and commitment to your service. For example, use coupons. 

Using coupons is a powerful strategy for reducing churn and enhancing customer loyalty. Consider offering special promotions to long-term subscribers as a token of appreciation.

When you provide coupons to your loyal customers, it not only strengthens their existing relationship with you but also creates a sense of value and appreciation. This gesture demonstrates that you recognize and reward their loyalty to your service.

Additionally, offering coupons directly contributes to improving the overall customer experience. You’ll be surprised how a small ‘Thank you’ can go a long way. Coupon campaigns, anyone?

Read more: The Value of the Winback Campaign - CBC Case Study


3. Enhance user experience and interface

The user experience encompasses every interaction a subscriber has with the OTT platform, from navigation to content discovery and playback.

And friction is the enemy of the game here. 

You’re probably wondering, will there ever be a frictionless platform? Perhaps not. But there will always be competitors who are striving to do better than you. 

Every bit of friction pushes your subscribers toward the exit and into the hands of your competitors! 

Don’t let that happen. 

Your goal is to create a captivating and user-friendly interface that ensures subscribers are continually delighted and immersed in the platform, so much so that their experience will triumph over whatever friction may arise, regardless.

Read more: How does Flow Sports use customer insights to improve customer experience


Embrace the power of subscriber analytics

Subscriber data analytics is vital for churn prevention and enhancing subscriber retention in the dynamic world of OTT services. 

By diving deep into subscriber data, you can gain valuable insights into individual preferences, behaviors, and needs. This understanding forms the foundation for implementing creative ways that keep subscribers hooked and foster long-term loyalty through: 

  • Personalized communication to build stronger connections with your customers in return for their loyalty. 
  • Enhanced user experience and interface improvements to make navigating the platform seamless and enjoyable, encouraging continued engagement. 
  • Targeted communication and retention campaigns, loyalty programs, and rewards to create a sense of value, appreciation, and exclusivity.

Remember, the best churn prevention is rooted in proactiveness rather than reactiveness. 

Embrace the power of subscriber data analytics and embark on a path to secure a loyal subscriber base and thrive in the competitive OTT landscape.

Using Data Effectively for Next-Level Subscriber Retention

Cleeng SRM Product