21 FEB 2024

USA: 61% of departing OTT subscribers believe they overspend on streaming

This comes from a study by the consulting firm Park Associates. It shows that churn remains a persistent issue for video streaming services, primarily driven by cost and difficulty finding content.

21 FEB 2024

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Parks Associates published a consumer study called "The Viewer Journey: Navigating Streaming Options." The investigation finds that churn remains a persistent problem for video streaming services, with cost and trouble finding content being the leading drivers. Next, we will review some of its findings.

Among the 48% of US internet households that canceled a streaming video service in the past 12 months, 61% feel they are spending too much on these services. Fifty-seven percent admit switching between services when they can't find anything to watch, while 50% expressed frustration when a favorite show is canceled or removed from service. 

The study is a survey of 8,000 US internet households that analyzes how households view content, prioritize and spend money, and how decisions are made to pay for some services over others. Parks Associates' data from Q3 2023 show that households subscribe to 5.8 services on average, while 29% subscribe to more than eight. Households can build their own service stack, which excludes unwanted channels that typically come with pre-made cable packages. Still, they find it burdensome to manage multiple subscriptions and monitor ever-changing content sources.

Sarah Lee, Research Analyst at Parks Associates, analyzed the phenomenon: "Service providers are in a precarious position in finding the right balance between cost and content, as many consumers are ready to vent their frustrations by canceling a service. Consumers are not excited by the many service choices—more than half of households who recently churned feel there are too many streaming options to choose from. This finding suggests consolidated service models are the right move. For example, ESPN, Fox Corp., and Warner Bros. Discovery recently announced a streaming sports service that will include multiple networks and all major sports leagues. Consumers want this type of one-stop service," outlined.

The expert also asserted that the industry is undergoing a reconfiguration process: "The industry is reconfiguring through mergers, acquisitions, consolidation, and partnerships, all of which will impact content discovery, consumer choice, and budgets. In the future, consumers may not need to subscribe to as many services to find the content they care about," Lee clarified.