The New Opportunity | How to Use Over-The-Top Distributions to find Influencers

If you’re reading this post, then chances are you understand what Over-The-Top (OTT) distribution is. It’s consumers’ new favorite way of consuming content (ie. Netflix a favorite of our team and the world)!

Just in case you don’t know what OTT is here’s a lament definition,

“(OTT) is any app or service that provides a product over the Internet and bypasses traditional distribution. Services that come over the top are most typically related to media and communication and are generally, if not always, lower in cost than the traditional method of delivery.” – Techopedia

With OTT users get to experience a flawless viewer experience, without the hassle of having to deal with commercials and ads. While this is awesome for consumers, it presents a challenge for marketers. If you’re a marketer looking at this as a problem, it’s time to change your perspective and look at the opportunity, the glass is definitely half full.

Don’t fall into the misconception that Netflix, Amazon Prime, Spotify, and other streaming options are creating a hindrance or deterring your consumers from your social feed. What they’ve done is created is a giant opportunity for brands to recognize potential mega, macro, and micro influencers in early stages.

If you have ever watched the show Stranger Things, then you’re very familiar with the star of the show, “Eleven” (Millie Bobby Brown). Side note, if you haven’t watched Stranger Things, do yourself a favor, and binge on your next day off.

Millie Bobby Brown currently has over 16 million Instagram followers, which makes her a Celebrity or Mega Influencer. But prior to Stranger Things becoming wildly popular, Millie Bobby Brown was simply a Micro Influencer with potential. Her posts now generate millions of likes, but early on in her success, they garnered in the tens of thousands. Had you caught her potential and tied a campaign to her likeness you would’ve seen an explosion in awareness and engagement with her growth.

It’s easy for marketers to go on a platform like Instagram and find Influencers with a big following. However, what is failed to be realized by marketers and is now a part of their job, constant sourcing for potential influencer whether on social or not having their hand on the pulse of all things that involve culture consumption. Go ahead and watch that show on Netflix, for leisure, or add that Indie Artist to your Spotify playlist, but don’t think your work has stopped. You should always be on the hunt for different avenues that give way to discovering and capitalizing on potential influencers.

The beauty of OTT is that it’s a great way for marketers to track consumer analytics. The analytics behind every show, every song provides marketers with a better understanding of niche audiences and is a built up beyond social analytics (the more data the better). With this information in-hand, brands are able to hyper-target which potential Influencers could be a good fit for their next campaign. According to a study from St. Joseph Communications, “67% of marketers believe that influencer marketing campaigns help them reach a more targeted audience.”

If you’re still a bit apprehensive about OTT’s marketing potential, take this into consideration – 59% of U.S. broadband households subscribe to some form of an OTT service (Netflix, Hulu, Amazon Prime, Spotify etc.). That’s a staggering number to consider. When you check out these streaming services, you’ll notice shows, songs and playlists for any genre you can think of, equating to early target market research and massive possibilities for brands.

Let’s say for example you represent a beverage brand looking to create a new campaign that focuses on showing off the brand’s new soda, the target is Gen Z and sci-fi meets creative is your premise. OTT  platforms are a wonderful new outlet to take advantage of.

Let us prod this example a  bit further.

Netflix recently launched a new show, Lost in Space, which according to Nielsen data, drew 6.3 million viewers in the United States within the first days of its release. The show’s star is Maxwell Jenkins, a 12-year-old actor that plays the principal role of Will Robinson. Currently, Maxwell’s Instagram account has over 14,000 followers, with posts gaining anywhere between 4,000 to 10,000 likes and an average of 200 comments. The opportunity is clear, Maxwell is a perfect Micro Influencer for your beverage company. The relationship building with him early on and prediction of his superstar status upgrade is a good bet to take, especially with examples like Millie Bobby Brown to support approximations.

These are hidden opportunities worth taking, all you have to do is search outside of the social box and then revert back for campaign placement.

This is simply one-way brands can utilize OTT to strike new creative ideas. Narrow down who your target audience is, and find out what kind of content they consume and within what OTT platforms.  Then search within those respective platforms to discover your next Influencer talent.

If you haven’t utilized Micro Influencers yet, stay tuned for our next post where we’ll dive a bit deeper into the benefits of Micro Influencers across all platforms. In the meantime, we leave you with this quote from The Startup, “60 percent higher campaign engagement rates are driven by Micro-Influencers; those campaigns are 6.7 times more efficient per engagement than Influencers with larger followings, which makes them more cost-effective; and Micro-Influencers drive 22.2 times more weekly conversations than the average consumer.”

Post by Evie

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