Why Data Collaboration Is the Next Frontier for Streaming

By Hugh Stevens, UK MD at LiveRamp

Data collaboration is increasingly being recognised as a linchpin of success in digital marketing.  For example, a recent report found that 94.2% of brand marketers see the benefits of collaborating with partners to augment their first-party data. The atmospheric rise of retail media is a testament to this fact.

Data collaboration, when executed effectively, unlocks revenue growth through partnerships and data interoperability across various departments within the business. The opportunities are not just exclusive to retailers either. Rather, they are available in any business partnership where there is a value exchange. i.e., where one party has valuable customer data, while the other is eager to invest in activating that data.

With almost endless verticals where this template could be applied, the world of streaming, with its vast reservoirs of user data, could immensely benefit from data collaboration.

Internal alignment

Indeed, in the era of ‘peak TV’, with consumers spoilt for choice of streaming platforms, opportunities for growth and differentiation must be investigated to get ahead in this crowded space. The consumer data that streamers already hold presents an almost self-propagating resource in this regard. Through the rich customer insights they provide, streamers can capture an even greater share of audience and collect more of this valuable resource.

Of course, if streaming platforms are to realise the potential of user data, they must take steps to facilitate how it is managed across the business. In particular, first-party data must be democratised across the organisation, eliminating silos that hinder progress.

The rapid expansion of streaming platforms has seen many parent TV companies expand into large enterprises with multiple business units, resulting in the proliferation of data silos within these conglomerates. It doesn’t matter if one department within the organisation is sitting on a data goldmine – it’ll be impossible to employ its full potential if secure access isn’t made possible enterprise-wide. By dismantling data silos, a deeper and more holistic understanding of users can be achieved, which opens up a plethora of opportunities to drive and diversify revenue streams. For example, alongside enabling enhanced content recommendations and more relevant advertising, to key audiences, this multidimensional understanding of current and potential audiences could underpin the marketing strategy behind the platform’s next big release.

Data facilitator

Nevertheless, democratising first-party data across the business can only become a reality if streaming platforms have the appropriate tools at their disposal. Access to data should not only be simplified but also activated and measured to its maximum potential.

Crucially, effective tech solutions should facilitate internal and external data collaboration, while respecting user privacy and safeguarding that data. For example, Data Collaboration Platforms that include data clean room capability create a safe and neutral environment where internal departments, or external brands, can collaborate to access and measure data more effectively without either party gaining access to the other’s customer directly identifiable personal data. With an enhanced clean room, a streaming platform can better deliver on their consumer strategies through omnichannel connectivity, understand audience behaviour with data science and insight tools, and optimise advertising spend to make sure that they are delivering efficacy in their media investments.

Better together

Indeed, even if data is fully interoperable internally, no business can get a totally accurate customer view on its own. To gain a more holistic understanding of customers “outside their own four walls,” and, in turn, enhance the quality of customer experience, external partnerships must be leveraged to unlock additional insights.

Whether it be brands, retailers, data providers or even market research firms, streaming platforms can collaborate with a range of strategic partners to help them reach more consumers and learn more about their customers. For example, partnering with an airline company on in-flight streaming content, or with a telecom business to bundle subscriptions, gives streamers and their partners access to customer insights they wouldn’t have otherwise been able to obtain, creating a win-win-win for both partners and consumers, who get a better experience and more value from the companies they engage with.

Overall, data collaboration emerges as an essential element of success across the streaming industry. Through these transformative partnerships, streamers and their partners can unearth new business opportunities they simply can’t get any other way, all while delivering a better and more meaningful customer experience.

Those who neglect the power of data collaboration will struggle to thrive in the ever-evolving digital landscape and will ultimately lose ground to their more forward-thinking competitors. Embracing data collaboration is not merely a choice but an essential strategic imperative for the streaming industry to prosper in the dynamic future of digital.