The Redseer report indicates that to become profitable, OTT audio platforms should work on increasing subscriber base to 6% of total users.
A recently compiled Redseer report indicates trends among OTT audio platforms as they move towards the route of paid subscriptions and profitability. In India, such platforms typically operate on three monetization models — ad-based, bundled and subscription-based. One of the major insights recorded in the report is how Indian users find Rs 25 as a feasible amount to spend on an OTT audio subscription. Features that make users willing to pay include no ads, facility to download content and offline browsing.
The report indicates that in order to become profitable, OTT audio platforms should focus on increasing their subscriber base from 1% to 6% of total users. The current national lockdown situation is expected to lead to a massive spike in the usage of these platforms, something that is likely to cause a boost in the number of subscribers as well.
To increase the number of paid subscribers, OTT audio platforms need to invoke differentiation. They are doing so by focussing on original content, similar to their video counterparts. The move will also help them provide an effective platform for budding artists to showcase their content at minimal costs.
Currently, the ad-based model and the bundled model are the major sources of revenue for OTT audio players. However, there is an increasing focus on a subscription-based model for better monetization.
Profitability and users
Currently, subscription-based users constitute only 1% of the total user base and a majority of revenue is driven by in-app advertisement. However, the average revenue from subscription/user is almost 80x that of revenue from advertisement per user. Thus, players are focusing on increasing their subscription user base to achieve profitability.
Increasing focus on Originals by OTT Audio platforms has manifold benefits as it helps platforms to acquire new users, differentiate itself from rivals and increase the share of the subscription user base.
Price of subscription
Interestingly, 62% of the consumer surveyed are willing to switch to a paid subscription model and these users are willing to pay ~INR 25 per month as subscription fees.
Sources of revenue
In the race to become profitable at the earliest, OTT audio players are also exploring additional sources of revenue besides Advertisement and Subscription-based revenue. Thus, these platforms have started offering complementary services like sales of tickets & merchandise and data analytics to grow their revenue at a faster pace.