The general narrative in the pay-tv and movie industry is a movement away from the bundle of channels offered through cable providers and instead packaging together a collection of subscription streaming services fed through a high-speed internet connection. The fact that the high-speed internet connection is often provided by the same cable provider is almost beside the point.
Early entrants came onto the streaming scene around 2005 and quite a multitude of options now exist, with more on the horizon. The sheer number of choices has created some fickleness with viewers. It’s not just cable that customers are dropping, as even Netflix lost subscribers in the most recent quarter– about a million of them! Looking at the chart below, not even a must-see hit is a guarantee for subscriber retention. It’s a wild streaming world out there!
A colleague of mine lamented the other day that he’s paying more for the package of streaming services he ended up with than he was for cable, and he has to juggle with the different logins for each service. Is this sort of fragmentation the real desire for those who wanted a better (or less costly) television bundle?
I recently came across a Chicago Booth article from almost ten years ago (January 2013) that went into ways that cable tv companies were adjusting marketing efforts to retain more customers and attract new ones. Fast forward to today, and major cable operators still collectively have hundreds of millions of subscribers. It may be that savvy (or frustrated) consumers are at different times cutting the cord and stopping the stream!
Enjoy the Booth article and also some insight into how one of the largest cable providers (Comcast) has also entered the streaming race in a big way with Peacock, the premium streaming service with the highest percentage of ad-supported customers. Even Netflix is planning on an ad-supported option.
Let me know your thoughts- Do you still have cable? What streaming services do you have? Do you forgo both and get your channels over-the-air?
~ Brian Kasal- The Leadership Matrix
Click here- Hey, Cable Guy, Offer Me a Free Movie—and Other Ways to Keep Customers (Booth)
P.S.- Did you see my last Leadership Matrix post? Some Relief on the Supply-Chain Front
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