Viu-ing convergence: video streaming partners television

Small screen marketing has come into its own with OTT (Over-The-Top) platforms streaming video content to a massive mobile audience. In a recent report, Viu predicted the average user’s smartphone data is expected to grow from 1.2GB in 2015 to approximately 9GB by 2021, largely driven by the consumption of mobile video.

“Smartphones continue to gain popularity causing an increase in mobile phone users with 43 million mobile subscribers in Malaysia. VOD platforms offer consumers the freedom to consume content from anywhere at any time from their mobile devices,” says Kingsley Warner, General Manager and Director at Viu Malaysia.

What sets Viu apart from the other players is its freemium business model: the first regional premium brand offering premium videos for free, supplemented by brand advertising and video on demand.

And this will now be coupled with same day airing from September onwards on Media Prima’s NTV7, with Viu Originals ‘Salon’, ’Jibril’ and ‘The Bridge’. The power of FTA (Free-To-Air) and OTT is the big play here…

We ask Kingsley what’s next in the thumb-stopping world of original video streaming content…

SHARE TWEET SHARE EMAIL COMMENTS
Small screen marketing has come into its own with OTT (Over-The-Top) platforms streaming video content to a massive mobile audience. In a recent report, Viu predicted the average user’s smartphone data is expected to grow from 1.2GB in 2015 to approximately 9GB by 2021, largely driven by the consumption of mobile video.

“Smartphones continue to gain popularity causing an increase in mobile phone users with 43 million mobile subscribers in Malaysia. VOD platforms offer consumers the freedom to consume content from anywhere at any time from their mobile devices,” says Kingsley Warner, General Manager and Director at Viu Malaysia.

What sets Viu apart from the other players is its freemium business model: the first regional premium brand offering premium videos for free, supplemented by brand advertising and video on demand.

And this will now be coupled with same day airing from September onwards on Media Prima’s NTV7, with Viu Originals ‘Salon’, ’Jibril’ and ‘The Bridge’. The power of FTA (Free-To-Air) and OTT is the big play here…

We ask Kingsley what’s next in the thumb-stopping world of original video streaming content…

For the first time, a regional OTT brand and a local broadcaster are joining forces on how content will be delivered to the market. A really unique opportunity combining the reach of OTT and television creating a complete 360 for advertisers. The daily use of the internet through the mobile phone is already higher than the average daily television viewing time.

As with social media algorithms, mobile VOD offers marketers the opportunity to leverage data analytics to acquire in-depth insights into the taste and preferences of users, acquire rich information on the genre of content a viewer consumes, at what time of the day and on what device.

According to the Malaysian Digital Association, RM716.63 million of total revenue in the Digital Advertising market will be generated through mobile in 2020. Here’s one way how it is happening…

WHAT’S THE OTT STORY IN MALAYSIA?

What we’ve seen in the last 5 years in Malaysia, is that OTT is also providing a value system to the consumers where they can choose content across multiple platforms; they don’t have to sit in the lounge room and watch TV, they can watch on their device, anytime, anywhere. Viu offers a large amount of content for free – supplemented by us working with advertisers. The next level for television channels, besides content, is pervasive distribution….

IS PROVIDING NATIVE LANGUAGE CONTENT YOUR KEY STRATEGY, AS YOU ALREADY DO IN MORE THAN 34 LANGUAGES?

That’s our USP. Across the region, Viu creates their own content based on local culture, local languages and a local cast in an effort to attract the local target audience and build affinity.

Even though, we have Viu Originals from other countries available on Viu Malaysia, we plan to target Malaysian viewers keen on watching local content featuring local talents that they are fans of. Even though English is the most common language across the region, we believe a vast majority of Malaysians relate better to our local Bahasa Malaysia language.

AS A REGIONAL OTT BRAND IN 16 MARKETS WITH 16 MILLION MONTHLY ACTIVE USERS, TELL US ABOUT YOUR LOCAL PARTNERSHIPS HERE.

Our brand Viu has reached 16 million subscribers regionally with our OTT streaming platform ever since we’ve entered into the Malaysian market two and a half years ago. We have partnered up with all four Malaysian telcos such as Digi, U Mobile, Maxis and TM as we offer high data consumption that benefits their users and to safeguard our consumers from watching pirated content.

However, our partnership with TM ended earlier this year. But with the release of our Viu Originals, we hope to provide greater value for our existing partners and to bring new partners on board. Big brands such as Apple, McDonalds and LVMH to name a few, have advertised with us, and programmatically we have also partnered with the likes of Facebook, InMobi and others.

WHAT’S YOUR TAKE ON HOW MALAYSIANS CONSUME ADS?

We have researched and listened to them, to give them what they want. Over the last one year, we have had a 80% completion rate for our ads which is a testament to our understanding of the audience and is also a high completion rate in any market. The way we’re approaching our Viu Originals are examples of how we’re taking this further. We’re taking video advertising campaigns and giving them coverage on TV, out of home and digital while relating it back to what really matters to the user – content.

IS YOUR CONTENT THE LOGICAL FIT FOR MEDIA PRIMA VIEWERS?

Viu Originals are what Media Prima viewers are looking for: local Malaysian content with high production value. Malaysians want to see content relatable to them with the quality expectations they have from the rest of the world. We’re producing locally relevant content at a value unheard of in the FTA market and yet is expected. Given their audiences’ access to high quality entertainment is usually via expensive alternatives, we aim to change that.

WHY ARE YOU ARE INVESTING A LOT IN CONTENT?

We believe content is the secret sauce that differentiates and elevates a good VOD platform to becoming a user’s preferred platform. For Viu Originals’ upcoming content, we have tapped into a genre that has not been explored before by our competitors.

While we know that romance and action are huge audience favourites, we believe that it may be a little overdone and it’s not something new. So by providing a fresh take on the crime and thriller genre through compelling stories with local context that’ll strongly resonate with Malaysian audiences, we believe they willl enjoy the plots of the show and the twists that will be unravelled. We’ve had the opportunity to work with brilliant local script writers who have provided intriguing stories that we are bringing to life.

TELL US MORE ABOUT THE MEDIA PRIMA PARTNERSHIP WITH VIU

There were potential synergies between the businesses to begin with which is why this was such an important partnership for us to pursue. For Media Prima it was access to great local content over and above what they produce themselves year in year out, and for Viu, it was working with a team who believed TV and digital audiences can be aligned in terms of viewership and advertisers. Media Prima’s teams have been a great fit with the Viu team, with both of us working closely to ensure the success of this partnership across the strategic pillars of production, sales & marketing. Thereby unlocking exponentially more value for both our viewers and advertisers. Both of us truly believe that TV and OTT Video will compliment each other in this new market defining partnership

HOW CAN MALAYSIAN ADVERTISERS AND BRANDS WORK WITH VIU AND MEDIA PRIMA?

With Viu Originals aired on Media Prima, local and international brands have unique digital advertising opportunities from online to offline, through digital and traditional platforms. We’re working very closely with Media Prima to deliver prominence to advertisers through show integrations, TV spots and Out Of Home advertising. We are also extending the reach via our own platforms and established digital marketing presence. On Viu itself, we’ll be extending the longevity of product integrations as our shows are available to our users anytime. We will have additional pre/mid rolls and other on site/app assets that will further enhance the value of advertising with a show. We use video platforms, social networks and influencers to give advertisers even greater reach and relevance with behind the scenes footage, teasers, trailers and more.

TELL US ABOUT THESE COMING VIU ORIGINALS?

The three shows that we are working on right now are Salon, Jibril and The Bridge and they are all crime and thriller dramas. Salon is the story of Anna, who opens up a salon in KL with hidden motives where she avenges to find the person who killed her family. This show will be an interesting take as two of the actresses will be taking the lead role in this series, and we believe it is important to showcase female empowerment in our society.

Jibril, on the other hand, is a show about the main character Jibril who is an intelligent lawyer who defends a suspect of a murder in the court of law. This show will integrate plenty of new-age technologies and showcase how it impacts people as the story unfolds.

The Bridge will be the last show to premiere this year and is the Asian adaptation of a show originally from Sweden that already has adaptations in North America and the UK. The UK version is already in its 4th season.!

The show centres around two halves of a dead body that are discovered by the police on the Malaysian and Singapore border. The officials from two regions would have to work together to investigate the killer despite their differences.
For this show, we are excited to partner with Endemol Shine Group and to be able to produce a regional based show is something we are proud to be a part of.

As for the cast members, we are excited to reveal we have casted a diverse list of big, established Malaysian talent to be a part of our original shows.
For Jibril we have Lisa Surihani, Aeril Zafrel and Sangeeta Krishnasamy as the lead cast, whilst for The Bridge, we have casted Bront Palarae, Tony Eusoff and Rebecca Lim, a Singaporean actress.

For Salon, we have decided to take a slightly different approach and casted fresh Malaysian faces like Julia Farhana, Idris Khan and Josiah Hogan. The shows are a great platform for all local talent – from producers to scriptwriters to actors.

Our Viu originals are not only made available in Malaysia, on both Viu and Free-to-Air platform, NTV7, but it will also be made available across the region.
Our viewers will still expect the best of Asian entertainment from Korea, Japan and the rest of Asia which we will continue to deliver.

WHAT’S THE NEW FOOTPRINT THROUGH YOUR ALLIANCE WITH MEDIA PRIMA?

The footprint we are looking at is close to 5 million. The beauty of this is the reach is sustainable for long periods of time. The value of partnership is in terms of advertising – marketing collaborations – there is a huge spend in radio, tv, OOH and digital all driving audiences to NTV7 in terms of content. It is also an opportunity for Media Prima to rebrand NTV7 which has gone through a rebranding this year.

The Viu Originals will be available simultaneously on Media Prima’s NTV7 Monday and Tuesday nights, 10pm for 3 months, and well as on Viu. For the viewers who have missed out on the episodes aired on NTV7, they are able to catch it or re-watch again on Viu as it will be available for an extended period allowing them to consume the content at their convenience in HD.

Of course the cuts that will be on Viu itself will be slightly longer and have additional scenes that wouldn’t make it on TV. The happy convergence oif viewing will augur well for advertisers and viewers.


MARKETING Magazine is not responsible for the content of external sites.

The Malaysian Marketing Conference & Festival 2024 at the Sime Darby Convention Centre is a TWO-day marketing event for all those in Marketing, Media, Advertising, PR, Digital, Data, and more….

The experience is on May 15 & 16, with Keynote Speakers, multiple tracks or Breakaway Sessions hosted by our booth partners who will show you the latest in the industry. 

Download Event PDF
Register Here




Subscribe to our Telegram channel for the latest updates in the marketing and advertising scene