Technology | Media | Telecommunications

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Growing Appeal of Streaming Online Video

Over the past six months, the popularity of online video services has grown significantly with women and older consumers, helping close the age and gender gap within the online video audience in the U.S. market.

Recent data sourced from Ipsos illustrates the widespread appeal online video services have with the majority of today's Internet users, and how streaming video in particular has helped build an audience with women and those aged 35 and older.

Since late 2007, the percentage of female Internet users ages 12 and older that have streamed a video online in the past 30 days has grown from 45 to 54 percent -- an all-time high for this demographic and nearly equal to the percentage of men (58 percent) whom have recently streamed video content online.

Moreover, the percentage of adults aged 35-54 that have recently streamed video online has also shot up since December 2007, rising from 49 to 60 percent in that time span.

Indeed, video streaming is no longer simply an online behavior enjoyed exclusively by the stereotypical early adopter segment -- young males. Rather, the growth in the online video audience is now being driven by other demographic segments.

According to Adam Wright, Director at Ipsos MediaCT, "It appears the prevalence of streaming video online among younger males may be approaching a ceiling today, whereas the other demographic groups are driving the audience growth here."

The implication for those in the video entertainment industry is that online video -- as a medium -- appears to be tapping into later stage adopter segments that were perhaps reticent to embrace it even just a year ago. Yes, video is truly mainstream.

The data not only illustrate the massive audience that online video services are attracting today, but also underscore the shifting media landscape today for many video entertainment consumers. Yes, the marketplace is totally fragmented.

Wright concludes, "Television networks, movie studios and other video entertainment entities will need to recognize the growing demand among all consumers for digital distribution. Streaming video is no longer something just teens and twenty-something's are enjoying, but rather it has become a fixture in mainstream America's daily routines."