Here’s What We’re Watching in 2019

Predictions from JW Player executives on the state of the digital video industry in 2019.

 

With 2018 coming to a close the media industry is changing faster than ever. With consolidation happening across the industry, new formats arriving, and video taking center stage for how audiences consume content we wanted to survey some JW executives for their “hot takes” on what 2019 had in store for the video industry. Here’s what they had to say.

 

Jeroen Wijering – Co-Founder & Chief Innovation Officer

We’ve been talking about “cord-cutting” for a handful of years now, but 2019 we will truly see a shift towards OTT. It will be incredibly hard to find a “dumb TV” and as such more and more OTT apps will pop up.

To serve these new distribution channels there will be a continued focus on OTT advertising, especially as programmatic for video matures and broadcasters realize customers will only pay for one to two subscriptions.

Finally, there will be continued divestment from videos on the Facebook platform – and more focus will be paid to Google AMP as they see continued traction with audience growth.

 

Brian Rifkin – Co-Founder & Head of Strategic Partnerships

In 2019 we will see massive investment in direct to consumer video apps from digital media companies both for OTT and mobile.

We will see significant growth in six-second video ads across all formats. After twelve months of constant news and information – less will be more for advertisers.

 

Miles Williams – Chief Marketing Officer

Convergence gets real (finally) — and the lines between traditional offline publishers, digital-first publishers, and broadcasters will officially evaporate.

All of these media companies will meet in the middle, adopting best-of-breed video solutions for their owned and operated platforms. Brand and original IP will matter more than ever.

 

John Luther – SVP of Technology

Next year content creators will come to grips with how difficult it is to build, maintain, market, and monetize their own branded OTT apps. Selling content to aggregators, such as Roku, Amazon, and Apple will consolidate the OTT market.

These apps take a hefty share of the creator’s ad revenue and/or inventory, but it’s worth it because they manage all the complexity (ad tech and fill, user targeting, video delivery, etc.). Additionally, it greatly improves the publisher’s content discoverability through universal search, and home screen promotion opportunities.  

Facebook has struggled to crack this market with its Watch and Portal products, but they certainly will not give up any time soon. With that in mind, my prediction is that Facebook will look to acquire Roku in 2019.

 

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