Local content is key to streaming audiences globally… that’s creating opportunity

local content

A new study says Netflix and Amazon Prime in particular are looking to grow their international markets by ramping up their local content mix.

Ampere Analysis reports markets like Japan, India and China are getting the most attention because audiences there are most engaged with local streaming content.

Nearly 90% of the world’s SVOD revenues come from just 15 markets, and more localized content helps to drive revenue and allow them to better compete with local entities.

The study found the United States, Japan, United Kingdom, Germany and China had the highest spend on content production by OTT providers and broadcasters, followed by Brazil, France, India, South Korea and Scandinavia/Spain. The US amortized content spend of $36.5 billion was tops in the world, followed by Japan ($7 billion), the UK ($5.2 billion), Germany and China ($4.4 and $4.3 respectively) in 2019. Those numbers don’t include an additional $4+ billion spent by companies like Netflix, Apple and Amazon, among others.

Ampere said it expects Netflix amortized spend on original content, in a few years, to exceed content spend in the UK ($5.2 billion), noting that it’s already ahead of Brazil ($2.8 billion).

Spending by 15 countries makes up 90% of the global spend, but they’re the same countries that see 88% of SVOD revenues.

Local content plays best in China, the US, India

Viewers in China, the US and India proportionately watched the most local content, more than 70% said they watched “very often.”

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Ampere said movies scored highest in India and Italy, but local TV series ranked highest for viewing in the UK, drawing 18% more viewers than movies.

As for Netflix content by country (out of the Top 40 titles):

  • In North America, 80% of most viewed titles in the US were local titles, compared to 5% in Canada;
  • In Asia, 68% of most viewed titles in Japan were local followed by 48% in South Korea and 38% in India. Ampere found Netflix’s Japanese catalogue is the most localized catalogue of any of its international territories. While the volume of content has declined in the past two years, the overall number of hours of local original or exclusive content has doubled;
  • In Europe, 25% of most viewed titles in Spain were local, with the UK (10%), Germany (8%), France (8%) and Italy (8%) following; and,
  • In Central America, 8% of the most viewed titles in Mexico were local (and 28% were in Spanish), followed by Brazil at 5%.

The bottom line

Content is the key to any catalog, no matter what the focus.

Increasingly, as more premium content becomes available over the top, consumers are being given more of an opportunity to chose.

While many global streaming content providers are increasing the localized content in their catalogs, outside of the US, it’s still a minority share for Netflix, Amazon, HBO and Disney, among others.

That’s an opportunity for local content providers to engage with consumers and increase their own value perception.

Stay tuned and stay well.

Jim O’Neill is Principal Analyst at Brightcove. You can follow him on Twitter @JimONeillMedia and on LinkedIn