The digital streaming industry is in constant evolution, making it imperative for marketers to adapt to emerging trends and technologies to meet customer demands. Experts anticipate that the global video streaming market will surpass $1,721.4 billion by 2030. In light of these transformations, advertisers must become proficient in cutting-edge technologies and employ imaginative strategies to enhance audience engagement, revenue, and brand visibility, while staying competitive. Here are the top six video streaming trends that marketers should be aware of:

Emergence of FAST

A popular trend in online video watching is the rise of Free Ad-Supported Streaming (FAST) channels. FAST channels are like an improved version of regular TV. They have set schedules and show high-quality content with ads that are aimed at your interests, giving you a TV-like experience. Unlike FAST, Video on Demand (VOD) channels also have ads, but they display them differently. VOD services use banners, sponsored ads, and interactive commercials to make money from videos. On the other hand, FAST channels show ads in a way that’s similar to cable TV. You can pre-record ads and play them during a live stream.

Both AVOD and FAST show different ads to viewers, but you can watch them on the same device. FAST channels are great because they offer top-notch content and are affordable. They show the latest videos in a format that feels familiar, making it a better experience for people used to regular TV. This has helped FAST channels like Pluto TV grow a lot. Many people prefer FAST channels because they don’t have to pay monthly fees for cable TV. However, the downside of FAST is that it can be technically challenging. To use this service, providers may need to plan their content ahead of time because the videos are not usually available on demand.

Omnichannel marketing

To succeed in video marketing, it’s important for marketers to use various platforms. An omnichannel strategy requires creativity and technology support from advertisers. Fortunately, there are many tools available today, such as websites, apps, social media, and email marketing.

Marketers can promote their brands on video-sharing platforms like YouTube, livestream events, and collaborate with content creators to reach and engage with a wider audience. They can also enhance user experiences and improve marketing by using interactive features, augmented reality (AR), and artificial intelligence (AI).

In addition, consider using third-party paid channels alongside traditional media. You can partner with FAST OTT aggregators, share revenue, and feature your videos in OTT channel libraries. Another effective way to increase brand awareness and drive traffic to your channels is through influencer marketing and purchasing ad space to distribute your popular video content on social media, reaching a larger audience.

AD stitching (CSAI and SSAI)

Ad stitching is how ads are placed in on-demand or live videos, and it’s essential for video advertising. There are two methods, client-side ad insertion (CSAI) and server-side ad insertion (SSAI), and it’s important for video marketers to understand the differences between them to optimize their campaigns.

CSAI means the device you’re using handles the ad stitching. When you start a video, the device tells the ad server to show ads at the right times (like before, during, or after the video).

One advantage of CSAI is that it collects more user data, so it can show personalized ads. The ads are seamlessly integrated into the video, making for a smoother experience. However, CSAI can be affected by ad-blockers that prevent ads from being shown, potentially reducing ad revenue.

On the other hand, SSAI does the ad stitching on the server before sending the video to your device. This ensures a consistent viewing experience, but it can’t show real-time tailored ads like CSAI.

CSAI is better for ad tracking and analytics, helping advertisers measure their campaign’s effectiveness. In contrast, SSAI is less affected by ad-blockers because it inserts ads on the server side, not the user’s device.

OTT soars

The use of OTT (over-the-top) services is on the rise, especially in the United States where there were over 182 million subscribers in 2020. These platforms are becoming increasingly popular because they offer users unlimited and instant access to high-quality content. Some of the leading OTT providers are well-known brands like Netflix, Disney+, and Amazon Prime.

During the COVID-19 pandemic, Netflix’s revenue reached nearly $25 billion in 2020, mainly due to more people staying at home. OTT providers are constantly working to provide viewers with original and valuable content, and this investment seems to be paying off as many young consumers are switching to online video streaming channels.

Companies can make money from their content using different methods, such as showing ads or offering subscription services for on-demand videos.

Live streaming on social media

Social media live streaming has evolved from a one-way broadcast to an interactive trend. Platforms like YouTube, Facebook, and Instagram have added features that allow real-time interaction between viewers and streamers. This has made live streaming more popular for both businesses and consumers. Brands can also use streaming gadgets to enhance their broadcasting.

Video streaming is a dominant feature on social media platforms, and YouTube is now a strong competitor to Facebook and Instagram. In 2020, 55% of consumers preferred Google’s network as their top video streaming platform.

Live streaming is a powerful digital marketing tool for businesses worldwide. This is because live streams reach an audience interested in the broadcast. The growing number of mobile users has also fueled the popularity of live streaming. Ecommerce brands can benefit from live streaming to showcase their products and improve the customer experience. To boost your marketing strategies on social media, it’s important to utilize major platforms like Facebook, YouTube, Instagram, and TikTok.

NFT and Metaverse integration on CTV

Smart TVs aren’t just for watching videos; they can also provide interactive experiences and access the Metaverse with non-fungible tokens (NFTs). CTV (Connected TV) marketers can find opportunities in these systems. NFTs are built on blockchain technology and have the potential to change the streaming landscape and help content creators make money. For example, platforms like YouTube Music and Spotify may take a 30% cut of creators’ earnings, while NFT-based platforms reward creators for streaming.

Samsung has introduced a smart TV NFT platform that connects to major marketplaces like Nifty Gateway. This allows people to buy and sell tokens and display them on their Samsung smart TVs. NFT-supported channels will also be available on CTV, giving creators the chance to make money on multiple platforms. The Metaverse gained traction in 2022, and experts believe it will shape digital marketing with immersive experiences using VR and 3D.

Understanding these trends will help you, as a marketer, make informed decisions and take advantage of the benefits they offer.