/// Dina Kaplan Breaks Down Web TV and Online Video Trends

March 1, 2011  |  Blog

In a recent Talk NYC interview at the Crosby Street Hotel, Dina Kaplan, co-founder of Blip TV, (see above video for full interview), explained the 3 biggest trends in regards to online viewing. Her descriptions sounded as though she was describing new restaurant trends, like the way fast food revolutionized the world of fine cuisine, much like online video content is doing to television.

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If you don’t have time to watch the entire video, here’s a quick recap of the interview:

Longer Shows Are Getting More Views
Her first take was that people like to snack on online video content. Short videos are thought to be better, but in reality, longer shows are getting more views and are actually being watched, which means online content in reality is more like television, as average viewing time has jumped from 4 minutes to 17 minutes. Much like the way fast food establishments were thought to be something you just grabbed as a snack, until McDonald’s and Applebee’s and the like took over the restaurant landscape. Online content is easy to watch when and where you want, and in a fast paced world, that’s important. It doesn’t mean you watch it less, it simply means it’s more convenient. The average viewing time for online content is 17 minutes, and the average television sitcom is 22 minutes. Look out television, here comes convenience looking to put your joint out of business!

Peak Viewing Online Is Edging Into Primetime
Second, Ms. Kaplan noticed a change in viewing times for online video content, as most shows used to be watched at lunch time when people were on break from work, again, like enjoying a quick video snack. Now peak viewing time is during prime time, when people traditionally watch television. Again, look out television, your regular customers, the prime time viewer, is finding the content online not only to be more convenient, but also to be competitive with your best dishes, your prime time material, so your coveted recipe might be in trouble.

Online Producers Are Nimble and Can Satisfy a Niche Quickly
Lastly, she noted that niche marketing is really a strength of online producers. Ms. Kaplan said that online content providers find a niche and try and own it. Red Vs. Blue is a highly rated show on Blip TV that only video game players of Halo watch and understand, but they love it, so they watch it fervently. Again, online content has new, specified flavors that fill a direct craving that mass production television does not. Not only is online viewing being snacked and dined upon more often, and during peak viewing hours, online producers can adapt and make daily video blue plate specials that hit the spot. Television production is planned months in advance and takes a year to produce and release. Online producers can find an immediate, unfulfilled niche and fill it quickly, gaining fiercely loyal followers. Brands benefit from supporting these online shows that people are in love with because they’re not seen as advertisers, but as supporters of this niche show you can view when and where you want. Online advertisers are seen as friends of a show that the viewer loves. It beats vying to get a :30 second spot on a show that half the audience will miss while they’re getting refreshments.

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