OTT Apps: The Complete Run Down for Video Entrepreneurs in 2021

Netflix, Amazon Prime, and OTT cinema” are the terms that are trending in the entire entertainment industry these days. All thanks to the Coronavirus pandemic. With a boomer in the OTT entertainment industry, video entrepreneurs have pulled up their socks and are ready to launch themselves with various genres for our entertainment.

If you are reading this blog, I assume you are also one of them, and you understand the weightage and impact of this quickly growing technology. The thing that needs consideration here is how to launch the best OTT app? And where to hire mobile app developers from? 

Here is an extensive OTT apps guide for you to come up with your own OTT app. The list of topics we will be covering in this guide is as follows:

  • What is an OTT app, and why is it famous?
  • How OTT aids the growth of hundreds of video streaming businesses?
  • How to launch your own OTT app platform?
  • How to find the best OTT solution providers?

So let us begin with “The complete guide for video entrepreneurs in 2021.”

1. What is an OTT app, and why is it famous? 

Going by the definition of “What is OTT app?”,

An OTT or Over-The-Top application is an app(mobile or web) that delivers video content to your smartphone, tablet, or smart TV through the internet rather than the traditional distribution methods of cable or satellite.

Yes! OTT apps open a whole new realm of sophisticated technology. These apps also allow you the instant streaming of your favorite shows or movies on your choice of device. 

You must be wondering why OTT is a big deal and why is OTT famous?

Well, my friend, OTT apps gain popularity among entrepreneurs for two reasons. 

  1. Content consumers expect to have it
  2. Video-on-demand business

On the other hand, there are 3 key reasons why viewers love OTT apps:

  • Accessibility: Users(including myself) become addicted to what they watch, and if not, they enjoy the comfort of their house while watching their favorite movies or shows without any interference. Through OTT, viewers can stream whatever they love watching anytime, anywhere.
  • Control: Who doesn’t like taking control? Undoubtedly, we are ready to pay a bit more if we are getting complete control over the stuff we want to watch. 
  • Cost: As a matter of fact, users prefer to pay a bit more for high quality and ad-free entertainment over the usual cable subscriptions, which offer limited accessibility and control.

2. How OTT aids the growth of hundreds of video streaming businesses?

In the analysis, the video streaming business entrepreneurs, who have incorporated OTT apps into their existing web services, experience massive growth in revenue and size. 

The two possible reasons behind this are Diminish Churn and Enhance Conversation.

  • OTT Apps reduce churn:

One of the most common things video enterprises get to hear from subscribers as they’re canceling their subscriptions is: 

You do have great content! But I don’t have the time to watch it. It’s not you, it’s me.

I understood from this that if your content becomes available on more devices, especially those preferred by your current users like mobile phones, people are more likely to consume a lot more of your content.

In short, having a website or web app is good, but users find mobile apps a more feasible and on-the-go kind of thing. It is you who can help them find the time for your content. 

By offering your subscribers OTT apps, you’re enabling them to consume your content anytime, anywhere, i.e., on-the-go on their mobiles.

  • OTT apps increase conversions:

In addition to increasing your users’ engagement, you also open up a probability of new subscribers for yourself (like the growing number of cord-cutters). The youth is actively searching for new OTT services to subscribing to.

Cord-cutters know that OTT apps come with freedom and convenience. It has been proven through our data that being able to watch their favorite content on their TV sets and mobile phones is a massive differentiator for viewers.

“The VOD businesses that offer OTT apps see an average of 30% higher conversions than VOD businesses that do not offer apps.”

 Going by the stats and facts, in 2019 alone, hundreds of media companies invested in OTT apps. Here are some examples:

  • ESPN launched ESPN+
  • Apple launched AppleTV+
  • Disney came up with Disney+

And the list goes on.

But why am I focusing on launching an OTT app so much? 

An OTT app’s beautiful part is that they are not technology reserved or not only meant for multi-billion-dollar media companies. Thousands of small and medium-sized medium businesses and content creators are launching their own OTT apps every day and are succeeding in this realm.

3. How to launch your own OTT app platform?

Before we begin with this question, here is a bigger question 

“Are you ready to launch your own OTT apps?”

Launching apps can be scary. (For me, it is!) It almost feels like you are launching a whole new business venture.

This is what raises a question in the minds of entrepreneurs: “is now the right time for our business to launch my own app?”

Isn’t this a valid question?

The most appropriate answer to this question is there will be no better time in this industry to launch OTT apps.

Right now and halfway through 2021 is a period we at PixelCrayons like to call the “OTT digital gold rush,” which is a window of opportunity where content creators can affordably start their own OTT app and stay in the competition.

Therefore, if you are considering launching an OTT app, you will get a higher return on investment if you do it now and beat your competitors to it.

Let us examine if your business is ready for OTT or not. 

You already have a VOD business and want to launch applications

If you already have a VOD business with a video streaming website and are wondering if you should launch OTT applications to grow your business, ask yourself the following:

  • Has my VOD content proven to be a viable and validated product for my target audience? (i.e., do people like your videos, and are they paying for them?)
  • Will my target audience benefit from being able to stream my content on their devices?
  • Do I have a clear and established brand and message?
  • Do I have an ongoing content development strategy?
  • Do I have a solid pricing strategy?

If you answered yes to all of these questions, your VOD business is healthy and ready to offer OTT applications.

One thing is crucial to note: OTT applications will not make a bankrupt VOD business successful. But it will help drive a profitable VOD business to become even more successful. Keep this in mind as you evaluate your company’s readiness for applications.

You don’t have a VOD business and want to launch apps

If you’re looking to launch your OTT apps but don’t have a video-on-demand website or business yet, that’s fine too. It may still make a lot of sense for you to start apps. Here’s a quick checklist:

  • Do you already have video content elsewhere? (i.e., on YouTube, IGTV, Twitch)
  • Do you have an established and attractive audience somewhere online? (i.e., Instagram followers, YouTube subscribers, emails)
  • Have you ever sold your content for money? (i.e., Patreon, teachable)
  • Do you have a recognizable brand and voice within your niche industry and target audience?
  • Have a VOD pricing model in mind?

If you answered yes to all of these questions, then launching a VOD and OTT business is the right business move for you.

How to create and run your own OTT applications?

Okay, now for the entertaining stuff.

You have all your ducks in a row: your content, your audience, your business strategy, and your vision. It even knows which applications to launch.

4. How do you create and run your OTT applications?

Assuming you cannot develop these OTT applications yourself, you have one best option:

  • Hire programmers in India (trust me, you won’t regret it)

Hiring someone to develop your OTT applications is obvious, but it can be costly.

If you have an adequate budget, you can hire programmers in India or an agency to create custom OTT applications for you. It will be built from the ground up, just for you, by a professional (or a team of professionals) to your exact specifications.

This entire process typically takes 3-6 months, and prices often range from $ 10,000 to $ 20,000 per app, depending on the app and features you request. That does not consider the monthly expenses of running the application, maintenance, support, and hosting.

If you want a complete OTT application with all the conveniences, you’d better find a media and entertainment application development company. It’s a significant investment, but it will pay off in the long run. You can approach them directly or advertise the job on a site like Stack Overflow.

All that said, we don’t recommend that you save money on these apps. Developing these applications can be very difficult (these are not your typical applications). It would be terrible for you to spend months and thousands of dollars on a mediocre developer who comes back with an ugly and buggy OTT application.

5. How to find the perfect OTT platform provider for you?

Different OTT platforms and video monetization providers offer additional features at different prices, so we only speak for ourselves in the last section.

But if you want to start researching and learning about all of your OTT platform provider’s options, here is a shopping checklist we put together to get you started:

The perfect OTT platform provider:

  1. provide you with a video streaming website, along with your apps
  2. allows you to customize your streaming website fully
  3. allows you to accept global payments
  4. give you complete ownership of the audience
  5. it takes less than 5 weeks to develop and launch your OTT applications
  6. offer free updates and maintenance for your apps
  7. be a technically hands-off solution for you

These are the seven most important factors that you should not compromise when choosing your ideal OTT platform provider.

Next steps for you

Congratulations on reading this entire guide; I know it was a long one. But I hope you feel more knowledgeable about the OTT world.

So what should you do with this information?

After digesting everything you learned today, I recommend that you start thinking about how you will incorporate OTT applications into your video business.

You can get started by contacting the leading entertainment and media app development agency to see if OTT apps are right for you.

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