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The US will have 200 mn online video viewers by 2016: Study

MUMBAI: Multichannel networks (MCNs) are part of a new strategy among traditional content companies and studios to reach millennial video viewers, according to the new report from Parks Associates called ‘Webisodes to Multichannel Networks: Future Content Opportunities’.

The research firm reports that there will be over 200 million online video viewers in North America by 2016, with consumers 18-24 leading the way. This millennial age group watches 5.5 hours of Internet video per week on a smartphone and six hours per week on a tablet, often favouring short-form YouTube content like PewDiePie and Jenna Marbles.

Parks Associates research analyst Glenn Hower said, “Millennials, who watch the most Internet video content, have been a difficult demographic for content providers and distributors to reach. As audiences for Internet video personalities grow, content companies have taken note of the potential to leverage these viewers and monetize Internet video by aggregating creator channels into multichannel networks.”

In the past year, traditional content companies like AMC Networks, Hearst, Disney and Warner Bros. have invested over $640 million in MCNs, which are entities that aggregate multiple online video channels and provide assistance in funding, promotion, partner management, digital rights management, monetisation, and audience development. New services like Vessel provide access to digital content from NBA, Discovery and Universal Sports as well as independent creators like GloZell, Veritasium, and Weezy Waiter.

Hower said “Internet video is in the midst of significant changes. Online content creators, once representing a collection of popular but disparate viral videos, have emerged to establish audiences that contribute recurring viewership, much like traditional television and video.”