Report: Consumers Desire Simplicity in Home Entertainment

Consumers are apparently getting headaches when it comes to sorting through their home entertainment options. With linear television and the DVD replaced by streaming and social media, consumers are looking for a return to simplicity navigating the over-the-top media landscape, according to new data from Accenture.

Six in seven consumers globally (86%) want an all-in-one platform to simplify their entertainment experiences with video streaming, fantasy sports, social media, e-commerce and more, according to the consulting firm’s report.

As part of its second annual global entertainment study, Accenture surveyed 6,000 consumers to understand their preferences and behaviors regarding their online entertainment experiences. Four in 10 respondents (41%) said they would pay for an all-in-one platform for their entertainment services. In addition, three in five (61%) want the ability to share their streaming profiles across platforms to allow for better personalization of content.

“Standalone streaming services are running up against some simple facts: There are limits to what consumers will pay for and only a certain amount of complexity and options that they are prepared to deal with,” John Peters, a managing director in Accenture’s Media & Entertainment industry practice, said in a statement.

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Other findings from the report further highlight the need for media organizations to reconsider their operational and content strategies:

  • More than one-third (35%) of consumers unsubscribed from at least one of the top five streaming video-on-demand services in the last 12 months, and 26% said that they plan to cut one or more in the next 12 months.
  • More than seven in 10 consumers (72%) reported frustration at finding something to watch, up six percentage points from the previous year.
  • More than half (55%) of consumers said they are overwhelmed by the number of streaming services to choose from, with 26% saying it can take them more than 10 minutes to settle on a streaming choice (up from 17% last year).

 

Accenture’s report also identifies three emerging roles for entertainment companies that are competing for consumers’ time, attention and money:

  • Audience aggregators are platform companies with a diversified business model that monetize attention and engagement directly and indirectly by tying multiple entertainment and other services together in one place.
  • Audience cultivators will create and efficiently monetize entertainment in one or multiple forms (e.g., video, music, gaming etc.) by knowing their core audience, focusing on content/cost efficiency, and ensuring that they’re included in audience aggregator platforms and bundles.
  • Content merchants will focus on making the best possible content without needing to monetize the engagement their content achieves.

 

“These platforms will achieve two crucial outcomes — creating inclusive, lower churn services and bundles that will drive revenue for media companies, while delivering experiences that enable consumers to easily find and access content,” said Imran Shah, a managing director with Accenture’s communications, media and technology industry group.

Exclusive Podcast: Streaming’s Three Pain Points

Tune in for an exclusive Media Play News podcast on the future of streaming platforms and how they can best utilize viewer data to develop content that leads to growth. Join Whip Media Group’s Eric Steinberg, Media Research and Insights Lead, and Accenture Media and Entertainment Lead John Peters, as they talk with MPN publisher and editorial director Thomas K. Arnold about streaming’s three “pain points” and how they can be overcome.

Report: Majority of Consumers Frustrated Navigating Content Choices Across Streaming Services

With myriad content choices found across multiple streaming platforms, an increasing number of consumers say they’re frustrated finding favorite shows and music located across numerous services.

New data from consulting firm Accenture finds that three-in-five subscribers to multiple streaming services expressed frustration with their viewing experiences, and 44% of those surveyed indicate they spend more than six minutes searching for something to watch.

Based on a global survey of 6,000 respondents, conducted between October and November 2021, to better understand their preferences, beliefs, and behaviors on their video content streaming experiences, the report found that more than 60% of the content they are paying for is not relevant to them. Furthermore, more than 56% said they wish their profile from one service could easily be shared with another service that may offer them better, more personalized content.

“Consumers said that the video streaming experience has become somewhat unwieldy, unfriendly, and expensive for many of them,” Andrew Walker, global communications and media industry group leader at Accenture, said in a statement.

The report also indicates that while consumers care more about the content delivered by streaming services, they find the navigation experience with the growing number of services to be increasingly frustrating.

John Peters, managing director in the media and entertainment industry group. contends content aggregators can address these concerns by unifying access across streaming services through application software, services and data-sharing agreements. Aggregators can also foster flexibility and personalization for viewers by serving as a single platform with curated content that enables them to select exactly what they want to watch.

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“Consumers didn’t express a strong preference for a particular company to give them a better user experience,” Peters said. “People expect innovation and improvement in this space and are looking for a company to come up with new and better ideas for delivering content to them in a way that makes their lives easier and their viewing experiences more enjoyable.”

The report suggests that companies streaming video, music, podcasts and/or gaming determine if they want to be an integrator or the integrated, so they can either shape distribution deals to entice SVOD and AVOD services to participate or partner with the entities vying to be the preferred integrator.

Invest in data privacy and make that commitment known to their consumers, so they are confident sharing data that is critical for integration and personalization services.

Think beyond SVOD and AVOD services to consider music services, podcast and e-book services, video games, home security, food delivery services and more. Accenture believes that streaming services with data-driven experimentation at the core of how they operate will be far more ready and nimble to adapt to changing consumer preferences.

“A big change to the streaming ecosystem is needed to give consumers greater control over their experience — the addition of a smart content aggregator, sitting across multiple platforms,” Walker said.

Disney Showcasing Interactive Movie Posters at CES

Disney Studios is set to showcase expansion of its prototype interactive movie poster campaign at the annual CES 2022 trade show Jan. 5-8 in Las Vegas.

Disney’s StudioLAB is working with Accenture, the technology consulting firm, to develop and pilot interactive movie posters that incorporate digital technologies, including cloud and OLED displays.

In 2017, the companies collaborated to design, build and install a prototype of an interactive movie poster for Disney’s live-action movie Dumbo premiere. The interactive movie poster used sophisticated software and hardware — including artificial intelligence and 4D cameras — to recognize and respond to individuals’ emotions by showing film clips that fit a person’s current mood.

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“We learned from the Dumbo prototype that fans and guests loved the interactivity our digital posters provide, so we brainstormed with Accenture ways that we could take that engagement to a new level,” Alice Taylor, VP of content and innovation at StudioLAB, said in a statement.

Taylor said future interactive posters would would increase engagement by offering personalized experiences — for example, users can insert themselves in the movie poster and share that image instantly with friends or family on social media.

“It transforms our audience’s journey beyond just the main feature at the theater,” Taylor said.

The companies are using the Microsoft Azure platform to enable the setup and monitoring of content virtually and data analytics to provide insights on how people interact with the posters. The ability to produce and distribute content from remote locations could enable interactive experiences for users in a variety of locations.

Since the new cloud-based platform was launched in June, StudioLAB says moviegoers have completed more than 1,000 interactive movie poster sessions.

“Using this advanced technology, Disney can tell unique stories in a new and engaging way by delivering a range of digital experiences that deepen consumers’ connections with their amazing franchises, stories, and characters,” said John Peters, Accenture’s Media & Entertainment industry group lead for the U.S.

The updated model of the interactive movie poster was first deployed at the El Capitan Theatre in Hollywood for the premiere of Marvel Studios’ Black Widow earlier this year. It was also used to engage with visitors at Disneyland during the Jungle Cruise premiere, and at the premiere of Searchlight Pictures’ Nightmare Alley this month.

Study: Standalone Voice Assistants One of Fastest Adopted Technologies in U.S. History

Standalone voice assistants — or smart speakers — are one of the fastest-adopted technologies in U.S. history and have a 98 percent satisfaction rate among U.S. consumers, according to a new report from Accenture.

Half of online consumers globally now use digital voice assistants, with emerging markets leading the way in adoption, according to the report, based on a global survey of 22,500 consumers across 21 countries.

“Adoption and satisfaction with smart speaker technology is booming,” said Robin Murdoch, co-author of the report and managing director of Accenture’s global software and platforms industry practice, in a statement. “Convenience and accessible price points are helping drive increased use, but maintaining this loyalty will require companies to stay relevant with consumer needs while creating and constantly renewing trust.”

The report, “Reshape to Relevance,” also found 93% of consumers globally expect their home device purchases, such as smart TVs or computers, to easily integrate with their standalone smart speaker.

The relevance of smart speakers is reflected in consumers’ expectations to use these devices for more-advanced tasks beyond routine activities like voice calling, playing music or eBooks, and accessing news, according to the report. They see value in voice assistants managing home security (61% of respondents), providing connected home automation (59%), paying bills and providing payment alerts (55%) — even making restaurant reservations (53%) and providing access to virtual medical advice (52%), according to the report.

However, trust is a potential impediment to greater adoption of smart speakers, with 41% of consumers citing privacy concerns and 40% citing security concerns with the technology. The report found 46% of consumers believe they don’t have control of their data with voice assistants, and 58% are more likely to re-evaluate their trust in this service by continually checking how their information is being used.

“Consumers expect their smart speakers to handle complex workloads and integrate with other products,” said Greg Roberts, co-author of the report and managing director of Accenture’s North America high tech industry practice, in a statement. “Brands that offer advanced artificial intelligence capabilities will be well positioned for success. But to attract more customers, they will have to be transparent in how they store, use and share data. Establishing an agreed trust standard with consumers is essential.”