OTT Brown Bag Session 1 – What is OTT?

Our summer learning “brown bag” series is focused on all things OTT. We’ve been developing digital video experiences for over a decade and power dozens of OTT experiences across mobile, web and set-top-box applications for major media companies like Disney, to new media entrants like AerNow. This series of posts will highlight the internal learning program on OTT based on our deep experience in the market.

The format

Every other week a small team from the org will pull together content to present to the larger company while they eat lunch.

While each session will cover a different area of OTT, our goal is to present the topics with the perspective of, “How does it work?” (the nuts and bolts), “Why do our clients care, and Why does the user care?”

For the 1st session, we begin with an intro into the business of OTT, and the strategies on how to be successful in the business of OTT.


So, What is OTT??

OTT (Over the Top Television) is the model by which media companies deliver content directly to users (not through cable or satellite). It’s the process of streaming media (primarily video) over the internet for an end user to a web browser, application or media device. Popular OTT companies, for example, are Netflix, HBO GO, ESPN, & go90. These are companies that solely focus on getting video content out to the end user VIA a streaming service.

There are a number of OTT services in market today, and the list is growing. New media upstarts like Crunchyroll, RedBull, Funimation and more see OTT as a new way to reach users. Based on the amount of video content being consumed via OTT, these companies are making smart bets!


Why OTT?

Revenue and reach. Advertising revenue is one of the most important revenue generators for OTT services and digital advertisement revenue is projected to be a 17 billion dollar a year business. We call it the “fifth horseman” to the other television advertisements. The other categories of televisions advertisements are, Broadcasting TV, Local Tv, Affiliate, and OTA Services like HBO, and ESPN. These categories make up a 70 billion dollar business, and with OTT advertisements becoming a near 20 billion dollar a year business, it matches those categories, also making it the fifth wing of Advertisement Revenue.

Monetization is the process of displaying ads to the user, and interactions with ads can generate revenue. Advertisements are not always interactable, they are also very often just overlays, and revenue is generated per play. Monetization has increased over 100 percent on streaming boxes and about 90 percent on mobile devices over the last year with the majority of monetization coming from outside desktop and laptop environments, representing over 60 percent of video ad views.

We will go more into detail on monetization in the Player Brown Bag in the coming weeks.


The OTT video lifecycle – From creation to delivery.

Let’s go over this in steps, shall we?

1. Capture your content.
-Will it be VOD (Video-On-Demand) or will it be LIVE (Live video streams)?
2. Associate the Metadata
– Content structure and details, description and hierarchy.
3. Transcode the content and CDN Storage
-This will be covered in later sessions, DON’T WORRY ABOUT THIS ONE GANG!
4. Manage your content and publishing
-VCMS (Video Content Management) , Live Content Windows
5. Content feeds, your delivery, then your presentation
– The business behind all of this.
– Rendering and the User experience. How does the content look??
6. COMPLETE THE PROCESS. The image below might help with a little visual comprehension!


Wrap Up

OTT is an upcoming business of digital media viewing. It is growing rapidly, with many leaders like Netflix, and Verizon. It is important to us because Ratio wants to teach the company on how to be successful in this grossing business.

Furthermore, ad revenue is one of the most important things to know how to work with when working with OTT. Correct use of monetization will make your solution successful for clients and your business.

The OTT Video Lifecycle is mapped out aboveĀ it provides a good overview of the steps to take your video from capture to user screens.


That is the basics of OTT, and generally, what OTT is. We really wanted to show why Ratio is investing into this business, and also why we are trying to teach our company about it.

Our next session will be more into OVP, and clarifying OVP as a whole. Make sure to check back when that is published to see all about our second session!

See you next time!


Design Philosophy – Come up with something better

“Give people the content they want as simply and efficiently as possible.”

Simple, Strategic, Focused, Intuitive, Delightful.