Improve conversion and retention for OTT platform with AI-enabled anomaly detection

Rise of OTT (Over-the-top) media services in India 

The data revolution in India in the recent past resulted in high bandwidth internet, low mobile data tariffs, and access to the best smartphones and upcoming technologies. It paved the path for rapid digitization and rapid adoption. One of the most noticeable and significant changes was the way Indians consumed video content. The likes of Youtube have millions of daily active users from India alone. 

People were not dependent on the content on the TV as they were getting the content on-demand and mostly for free. OTT platforms offered people quality content ( Ads-free) for a premium. A large number of customers are very interested in this value proposition.

The average time spent by Indian users on OTT platforms has increased by 30-60% in June 2020 since early March 2020

The Competition 

India currently has 95 OTT platforms across video, music, podcast, and audio streaming category.

OTT platforms are competing against each other for their share of the pie. Every OTT platform is trying to create competitive differentiation by having exclusive content and creating content which their users will love. The major challenge is the retention of the users as every OTT platform is a subscription-based business. 

OTT platforms not only act as a medium of delivery of content to the users but they also understand the customer’s preferences through the choices they make on the platform. Data analytics is used in recommending content to the user and also to create engaging content for the users. OTT platforms have to work with various Production houses, Writers, Lyricists, etc. for creating content.

Challenges in the OTT sector

During the times of COVID, the movement of people is restricted so people are confined to their respective houses to take care of themselves and their families. This has increased the adoption of the multiple OTT platforms in India, which has become the primary source of entertainment. 

Since there is no switching cost for the OTT platforms, the retention of the customers becomes very critical for every platform. Even getting new content out is a challenge as the creation of new content is a challenge during these times. Media houses, Broadcast Content creators, Production houses are finding new innovative and creative ways to shoot, edit, narrate stories, organize chats, etc. As the theatres are closed, we are seeing major movie releases over the most popular OTT platforms such as Netflix and Amazon Prime.

Indian users are more inclined towards consuming free content over paid subscription platforms. OTTs are offering subscription-based video-on-demand (SVOD) business models, in various flavors such as monthly, yearly, or bundled with telcos and other distributed platforms, etc.

The risk of losing customers 

The key challenge with the subscription model is that the customer has the freedom of walking out anytime if they are not interested in the content. 

Viewers leave when they no longer feel they are receiving good value for a service. As customer acquisition is expensive, OTT platforms must look for ways to retain current customers. 

Engaging users and providing a frictionless experience helps to build the rapport needed to keep subscribers happy and frequenting the service. Providing viewers with fresh content on a regular cadence sets the expectation that they can expect new and exciting content regularly. All conversion friction such as continuous buffering and lags during streams, complex payment processes, confusing navigation, and user experience, etc. needs to be eliminated to avoid customer churn.

Tracking the KPIs (Key Performance Indicators)

With millions of users using the platform for content consumption, the volume of the metrics to be monitored becomes huge, and the importance of monitoring is neglected unless there is some business incident. In this space, any downtime in the application will result in the customer using their competitor’s platform.

It becomes mandatory for every OTT media platform to monitor the following KPIs very closely:  

  • Customer Experience Metrics (Video Playback Error, Load time, etc.)
  • Network Experience Metrics (Byte Sent, Connection Latency, Internet Service Provider, etc. )
  • User Analytics ( #Visitors, Events for funnel progression, etc. )

Depending on the Content, there can be various metrics. E.g.

 Key Performance Indicators for OTT media platforms

Key Performance Indicators for OTT media platforms

Improving engagement for customer retention

Getting new subscribers through free-trial is much easier, but retaining and converting them takes a lot of planning and effort. Retaining customers is the hardest part. For improving engagement and customer retention, an OTT platform can take the following steps.

1. Help in content discovery through :

  • Recommendations based on the user’s preference.
  • Suggestions based on viewing patterns.
  • Suggesting similar content in case the searched content is unavailable.

2. Simplify and amplify content consumption by providing:

  • Language options and subtitles.
  • Actor in the scene details.
  • Scene details such as Location, artifacts used, Designers for the dress used, etc. 

3. Eliminate conversion friction by preventing:  

  • Continuous buffering and lags during streams
  • Complex payment process
  • Confusing navigation and user-experience

Leverage CrunchMetrics to improve conversion and reduce customer churn

CrunchMetrics helps businesses to discover anomalies/ abnormalities in business metrics, set up alerts based on error patterns that need to be notified, and find the Root Cause of issues through features such as Smart Insights and Contribution AnalysisIt changes the philosophy of data analysis by taking a proactive approach rather than a reactive approach. 

On live-streaming data, CrunchMetrics uses proprietary AI and ML algorithms to detect patterns and spot anomalies in real-time in Customer Experience Metrics (Video Playback Error, Load time, etc.), Network Experience Metrics (Byte Sent, Connection Latency, Internet Service Provider, etc.) and User Analytics ( #Visitors, Events for funnel progression, etc.). 

Watch this video to learn how OTT platforms can leverage autonomous anomaly detection to monitor their critical KPIs and grow the number of active subscribers.

Benefits of autonomous anomaly detection

It autonomously monitors millions of metrics in real-time, detects abnormalities, and notifies stakeholders to remediate critical issues that could have otherwise negatively impacted the conversions and churn rate. Automating the monitoring of the metrics through CrunchMetrics has the following advantages: 

Benefits of autonomous anomaly detection
Use cases for OTT platforms


Our key goal with CrunchMetrics is to remove all impediments to the growth of our customers by monitoring and detecting incidents in business metrics, helping you identify the root cause of issues, and aiding in resolving it before it affects your business in any way. 

Feel free to reach out to us at in case you want to leverage augmented analytics to transform your business.


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