Win over OTT sports seasonality with the all-new: Seasonal Subscriptions feature

Damien Organ | Wed Jul 26 2023 | Cleeng News

Seasonal Subscriptions announcement


As a broadcaster, you’ll agree that ROI is among your key concerns for your OTT platform. Customer ARPU & lifetime revenue form the critical factors for yielding high ROI. However, maximizing these has been challenging for most sports broadcasters as seasonality is a major factor due to the natural cycle of sports content.

Having worked closely with OTT sports leaders at Cleeng, we’ve noticed that most broadcasters use three main strategies to tackle this:

  1. Season passes
  2. Annual subscriptions
  3. Shorter monthly or event passes

All of these, by design, have weaknesses that constrain the revenue per subscriber that platforms can generate. 

Enter Cleeng’s new Seasonal Subscriptions monetization model.

This brand new feature is designed to overcome the inherent weaknesses of the existing solutions and empower your sports platform to maximize ARPU and LTV. For the first time sports platforms will have a monetization strategy tailored specifically for the dynamics of the sports season.

Want to know more?

Read on to discover our newest feature and find out how it can help you reduce churn between seasons and supercharge your growth. 


Are you facing these seasonal challenges in sports streaming?

The go-to strategy for most OTT broadcasters streaming seasonal content concentrates on seasonal passes, annual subscriptions, or shorter event passes. But all of these have challenges, such as:

1. Retaining customers between seasons 

Sports broadcasters traditionally use season passes to monetize their seasonal content. Season passes or season tickets give customers access to a broad range of content across the entire season and typically expire at the end of the season. 

Though a valuable tool, this has an obvious and expensive weakness: every season pass holder has to be re-acquired at the beginning of the new season

In subscription terms, if your platform depends on season passes, this means a 100% churn rate at the end of the season. 

Some evidence in the OTT sector suggests that the average service only regains around 50% of the previous season’s ticket holders. This is after significant marketing investments typically used to generate buzz about the new season. With acquisition costs soaring as the streaming wars have intensified over the past five years, this is a major challenge.

2. Customer acquisition outside the early season

With the rise of SVOD, many sports streaming platforms are turning to long-term subscriptions as the potential solution to the retention problem. It’s common to find annual subscriptions now marketed as season passes. Yes, they do benefit you as a broadcaster by automatically renewing customers on a yearly cycle. However, while this does lessen re-acquisition costs, the misfit between a fixed recurring annual subscription and the sports season is well known.

Think about it - a sports season typically has 5 or 6 months of premium content, where the most attractive content is broadcast. A 12-month subscription payment represents poor value for customers who know they're likely to receive less than half of that in sports action. And this only relates to customer attitudes at the beginning of the season.  An annual subscription can seem very unattractive in the middle of the season, with perhaps fewer than three months remaining. This may have already created severe challenges in customer acquisition outside of the early season period for you. 

3. Converting customers to longer plans

As a result of the previous two challenges, many broadcasters are now turning to event sales and shorter monthly subscription products to overcome the perceived value gap of an annual subscription and acquire customers throughout the season. 

While monthly subscriptions give customers more flexibility and represent a lower initial cost, they have the unfortunate effect of cannibalizing season-length offers. 

Furthermore, the conversion rate of monthly or event-length subscribers to longer-term plans is extremely low. In fact, from season to season, some services may see as little as 10% of the monthly subscriber base upgrade to season-length plans in the following season. The effect of this is to reduce the overall revenue potential of the platform significantly.

So, what’s the way out? 


Introducing the future of monetization in sports OTT: Cleeng’s Seasonal Subscriptions feature

Add a new seasonal schedule

Yes, we do understand your concerns. So, we’ve designed seasonal subscriptions as a recurring product. It’s tailor-made to help you overcome the weaknesses of the existing approaches and convert higher-value transactions from subscribing customers. 

As a broadcaster, you can align this feature with the exact cycle of your seasonal content. This means that you can configure your streaming offers in a way that: 

  • Responds with dynamic pricing across the entire season
  • Auto-renews at the start of each new season

So, you’re free to run special mid-season, Black Friday, or playoff promotions and encourage customers to sign up outside of the early season. 

By aligning with your season cycle, your offers can represent better customer value than annual subscriptions for seasons in the last five or six months.

The customers buying these special offers will then also renew at the start of the new season for the full-season product. 

In essence, you solve the problem of between-season drop-off and the high acquisition costs bought by each new season. 

Promotional prices - seasonal subscriptions

This feature can drastically simplify product management for your sports Ott platforms while dramatically raising your revenue potential. Want to hear these details directly from the Head of Product at Cleeng? Watch the full interview here.


Are you ready to boost your sports streaming revenue? 

Seasonality in sports content can be a challenge. We’re here to help you sail through. 

Cleeng's new Seasonal Subscriptions feature is ready and set to maximize your revenue potential. 

Here are the benefits of using this:

  • You monetize your sports content easily with a product tailored to the natural cycle of your season
  • Dynamic pricing options exist for special promotions to encourage sign-ups throughout the season
  • Customer renewal is automated for seamless retention. Goodbye to expensive re-acquisition campaigns!
  • Product management is simplified to unprecedented degrees
  • Your overall revenue potential multiplies

Don't let seasonality hold you back anymore - try Cleeng's Seasonal Subscriptions for sports streaming today and unlock the full potential of your platform.


Want to try setting up your own seasonal offers?

Try the demo


Cleeng SRM Product