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How Will the Cable Business Shift its Business Planning to Accommodate a New Future?

by Soft2share.com

The cable industry has seen the decline of television viewership continue as streaming media services gained popularity over the past few years. The subscribers jumping ship from television to streaming services are called cord cutters, and the cable industry needs to adjust their business planning to account for this growing demographic. No longer are customers concerned with why choose Comcast for cable, but what internet service will provide the fastest streaming capabilities.


Content on Demand

One of the major appeals of streaming content providers is the “watch anytime” aspect of the service. Viewers aren’t locked in to a network’s show schedule to watch their favorite shows. They explore content at their convenience, which helps people work around their busy lives. Many cable providers give this option now with DVRs, special on demand channels, or both. DVRs do cost the customer an additional fee on their bill, but the on demand channels are usually included as part of the cable package.

Refocusing on Other Services

Some cable companies are dealing with the mass exodus of subscribers by focusing on other services that they offer, such as Internet. They work on increasing the speed and reach of their networks, upgrading technology, and addressing innovations such as Google Fiber, which is bringing 1,000 mbps speeds to selected areas in the United States. Since streaming content delivery depends on good Internet service, this is a way for cable companies to benefit from the very services that are undermining their cable television offerings.

Competing in the Streaming Market

It’s hard to compete in a streaming market when the prices are so low, and the availability and convenience is so high. What most cable companies banked on was exclusive, original content, but Netflix, Hulu, and Amazon Prime have started creating their own shows and renewing old cult classics such as Arrested Development. That creates some big shoes to step into by the cable companies if they want to compete. Comcast has created its own streaming service, similar to Netflix, for its customers, while other companies are trying to acquire existing streaming content networks.

Going Mobile

While computer viewing has plenty of people on board, mobile watching through smartphones and tablets is what’s on the rise. Some networks provide viewing apps, such as HBO Go, which allows viewers to watch their shows anytime, anywhere on compatible devices. The networks build up viewership through mobile methods, which are only set to get bigger and bigger in the coming years. Not all of the mobile apps give the best experience, however, so there’s plenty of room for innovation among the cable companies and network giants.

Changing Statistical Models

The Nielsen ratings worked as a measure of show popularity for years, but as users move away from watching shows on the television, and instead watching them on computer and mobile devices, they need a new metric for measurement. This way networks can accurately find out what shows are popular, and which are failing, and advertisers are getting their money’s worth when it comes to putting commercials on. With DVRs and other ad-skip technology, it’s getting harder and harder to sell network advertising, so getting accurate viewership numbers is a good first step to getting around this problem.

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