For all those of you who think that watching content on OTT platforms is typical to millennials, you could be wrong. The India Watch Report (released by Star India's OTT platform, Hotstar), which talks about OTT viewing habits of Indians, says that 81% of OTT content is consumed by people above the age of 35 years. In fact, 45-year-old interior designer, Shweta Mathur, endorses the trend. She says that though the reason for her not tuning in to TV as often is because she doesn't find the content as compelling, she is more than happy to watch content on platforms such as Netflix, Hotstar and Amazon Prime Video. "I binge watched all the episodes of Family Man on Amazon Prime last week and the plan is to binge on Crown in Netflix this week."
Mathur says that her older sister in Patna has also completely switched to watching entertainment content on her mobile phone. "My sister loves those melodramatic soap-operas on Zee and she watches them on her mobile phone. She finds it more convenient," says Mathur. Many consumer goods companies are already looking at targeting at consumers above the age of 35 and the fact that the silver generation is increasingly consuming digital content could be reason enough for content companies to create content that could appeal to the silver generation.
The likes of Saregama India are already targeting the silver generation with products such as Carvaan (a radio which comes with pre-loaded music from the seventies, eighties and nineties). Similarly, Titan Watches are also positioned for a slightly matured audience.
Creating content keeping in mind the 35-plus could be a good idea for platforms to increase their active user base as this generation is also brand loyal unlike the millennials who are known for being fickle. Also, the number of senior citizens is growing at twice the pace of the overall population and the addressable market is over 12 million.
Content creators such as Balaji Telefilms and broadcasters, such as Star Plus and Zee, have made a fortune in the last couple of decades airing women centric soap-operas. Hotstar's India Watch Report says that 45% of OTT consumers are women. This again defies the logic that women prefer TV soaps to a Netflix original. Thirty-year-old marketing analyst, Shruti Arora says, "OTT content is much more realistic, it's stuff that happens around me. TV soaps are more fantasy." It will be interesting to see if OTT platforms also switch allegiance from the millennials to women across ages. The Hotstar report says that there has been a 3.2 X growth in video consumption by women in the last one year.
The India Watch Report also says that 63% of total video consumption happens in smaller cities. In fact, cities such as Lucknow, Pune and Patna watch more digital videos than Hyderabad, Bengaluru and Kolkata. Digital entertainment is also progressing the TV way. Remember how the three large broadcast networks Star, Zee and Viacom were hurriedly ramping up their regional portfolio a few years ago? Regional will be the growth driver for the OTT platforms too.