By The Numbers: The Imminent Future Of OTT Market

With the rapid rise of content-streaming services like Netflix and Hulu, terms like “cord-cutting” and “over-the-top (OTT) services” have also entered our lexicon. But how far will those new OTT services go in transforming the way we consume media content? Let’s look at two telling graphics from our recently published white paper on the OTT market.

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As the chart indicates, connected platforms supporting OTT services are clearly forecasted to increase. “Smart” connect TVs, in particular, will see significant adoption in the next few years, thanks to the increasingly common partnerships between television manufacturers and streaming device makers like Roku.

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The proliferation of OTT platforms and services means a gradual decrease in the number of total traditional multichannel subscribers, with 2014 potentially being the tipping point. If these predications stand, the industry would soon be feeling the huge impact of OTT companies.

For more in-depth analysis and insight on the OTT market, download our white paper here.

By The Numbers: Phablets On The Rise

With the announcement of 5.5-inch iPhone 6 Plus yesterday, Apple is officially jumping on the bandwagon of “phablets”—phones with big, tablet-like screen—after years of resistance. Why the change? Because the tide has changed and phablets have gained considerable momentum in popularity, as the following infographics from Flurry illustrate.

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Android phone-makers such as Samsung and HTC have led the movement towards bigger screens. There is little doubt that the phablets’ 11% annual increase among all Android devices signals growing consumer demand for larger phones.

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Furthermore, in the past year the phablets have almost quadrupled their share of app sessions, an indicator of actual device usage that are crucial to app developers and mobile marketers.

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Looking deeper into the behavior data of the phablet users reveals that they are more likely to fall into the affluent and influential demo that brands covet. Now with Apple finally on board, we can only expect this trend to continue.


By The Numbers: Connected Cars

It is Bill Gates who once mused that “If GM had kept up with technology like the computer industry has, we would all be driving $25 cars that got 1,000 MPG”. Well, today it looks like the auto-makers don’t have much of a choice but to catch up with technology, as over 66% of consumers surveyed by Accenture (see infograph above) put “in-car technology” ahead of “driving performance” as the bigger influencer in their car purchase decisions.

  • Right now, the number of cars connected to the Internet worldwide is estimated at 23 million, according to IHS Automotive

Even with auto-manufacturers slowly realizing the market demand for connected cars, however, there are still some developmental roadblocks in sight. For starters, the development and update cycles of the mobile technology greatly outpaces that of the automobile and such difficulty in syncing could spell big trouble for the built-in original equipment manufacturer (OEM) systems. Even with the brought-in methods that involve tethering dongles or linking smartphones to the cars, there is serious concern on the compatibility issue between different proprietary products. Neither approach is perfect, hence some automakers’ hesitance in moving forward. Nevertheless, the auto industry is, with a little prod from the tech world, slowly but surely catching up with the trend.

  • Over 20% of global vehicle sales in 2015 to include embedded connectivity solutions
  • Over 50% of global vehicles sales in 2015 to be connected (either by embedded, tethered or smart phone integration)

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Covering all current methods to get a car digitally connected, these two optimistic but conceivable forecasted numbers point to a bright future for the marriage of tech and auto. Almost all major tech companies have now forayed into the field. We’ve got:

  • Apple with its CarPlay OS looking to link iPhones with cars;
  • Google’s Android leaning on leaders of its Open Automotive Alliance, including 29 automakers currently on board, to push it out;
  • Microsoft trying to gain traction for Windows in the Car;
  • BlackBerry being the potential black horse in the race, as its QNX operating system is the same system that runs beneath CarPlay and Android Auto.

Regardless of the outcome, with all these tech giants powering the engines, it looks like those fancy connected cars are indeed in the fast lane, from L.A. to Tokyo.

By The Numbers: Big Retail Data

Arguably the most established commercial application of big data is the way retailers have been tracking and building their consumer database. Whether through building consumer profiles, analyzing purchase records, or even tracking in-store movements, data can reveal unexpected insights:

  • With systems in place to analyze unstructured data, retailers can now experience an uplift of 18 to 22% by doing simple behavioral profiling based on clickstreams.

This statistic, reported on by Tushar Montaño and Monica Pal, highlights a big reason why retailers are jumping on the big data train.

Scouring through the consumer data for competitive advantage has become somewhat a standard practice among big retailers. Retailers like Zappos and Amazon are now also using personal data to develop customer relationships that could lead to brand loyalty. And if a simple, clickstream-based behavioral profiling could bring an increase of around 20% in purchases, imagine what the newer technology, such as measuring window conversion rates to measure storefront displays and connecting outdoor ad exposure to store visit through the WiFi-based platform, could lead to.

  • In 2010, just 1.7% of small businesses were using business software; by last year, 9.2% had adopted such tools.

Reported in New York Times by Ray Boggs, the small-business market analyst at IDC cited easier-to-use products and lower prices as prime drivers of the growth.

The sharp increase of small business embracing intelligence databases nicely dovetails with the trend within big retail chains to track customer purchases with memberships and teaming up with credit card companies. While small business might not always have the recourses to handle the same amount of data those bigger retailers have, nevertheless they could leverage the limited but crucial data they could manage into building a rewarding, intimate relationship with their customers.

The followings are some of the key findings from Inmar 2014 Coupon Trends Report:

  • Manufacturer digital offers in market are up 250%
  • The number of digitally connected loyalty shoppers is up 40%
  • Growth in digital coupon redemptions is up 141%, with over 66mm redeemed

While retailers have gotten fairly accustomed to managing the information they put out on traditional media sources, most of they are still trying to make sense of the new digital and mobile media. It is important to note that these fast growing new media offers the retailers far better channels for data acquisition, whose potential has yet to be fully explored. But with mobile-influenced offline retail sales expected to reach $700 billion by 2016, according to Deloitte, figuring out how to fully engage the online and mobile customers becomes increasingly crucial.

IPG Lab Poll: Virtual Reality Interest

Virtual reality is becoming real with the addition of Facebook-owned Oculus Rift and Sony’s Project Morpheus which leads one to wonder what other use cases we might see beyond gaming. Could this change the face of media experiences, shopping and travel? The Lab surveyed 300 people, asking them to indicate which, if any, of the following Virtual Reality applications they would like to try. The results may surprise you.




Gen Z Week: By The Numbers

If there’s one thing to know about Gen Z, it’s that their media habits are as fluid as any generation to-date as they relentlessly pursue platforms that suit their needs. Sick of sharing updates with everyone from their Aunt’s cat to their third grade teacher and they’ll hop to a more private network. Tired of data fees for texting and they’ll find an OTT messaging workaround.  You get the picture.

Here are some of the key findings from our latest research with 140 Proof and Pew which speak to this trend.

  •  61% surveyed have unliked/unfollow a brand

These numbers take into account surveys from a wider demographic. Gen Z likely indexes higher, only affirming the need to value engagement over likes. One-and-done campaigns to drive “likes” won’t have sustained impact.

  • Of the 107 million US adults who use two or more social platforms, more than half use four or more.

As marketers, we need to constantly experiment with new forms of media to keep pace with shifting behavior. Each platform has a different use case and warrants distinct strategies and objectives.

  • According to Pew, 19% of 18-29 year old Facebook users have had someone ask them to remove a friend from their network

Interestingly enough, the average Facebook user has 338 friends which is in conflict with Dunbar’s number of 150. You can’t actually having meaningful relationships with your entire social graph, can you? As a result, we’ve seen audience fragmentation as Gen Z moves to platforms like Snapchat and Line, among others.