According to new research from Rakuten Advertising, consumers believe they are missing out on video-on-demand content. 

Out of the 4,500 adults across Europe that were surveyed, 64% said feel they are missing out on sport (32%), documentaries (26%) and comedy (25%) content during lockdown.

Many people (62%) have turned to subscription video on-demand services (SVOD) in the search for entertainment, with the average person personally paying for up to two VOD platforms. However, 26% say they have cancelled a VOD service because the price was too high and 35% would cancel an existing subscription to pay for a new one.

The demand for content has grown exponentially, with 77% of consumers watching one or more hours of video on demand during the pandemic. However, this increased appetite has caused a surge in consumers streaming content illegally. 41% of UK consumers believing it’s unlikely or very unlikely illegal streaming would continue if content was more readily available. 

Therefore, it is more important than ever to offer a variety of solutions that stop consumers being priced out of watching video and sourcing illegal content.

AVODs role in entertaining audiences in lockdown 

One way to make content more accessible is AVOD – a new ad-supported video-on-demand service that allows consumers to watch video-on-demand content for free with adverts. AVOD means brands can finally connect with audiences who are consuming on demand video. 

Currently, 37% of UK consumers are aware of AVOD offerings, with 74% saying their use will remain at the level established during lockdown and 60% say they are likely to sign up to AVOD offerings when the service is described to them.

46% of UK consumers say ads that are funny, engaging, or entertaining will increase their likeliness of using an AVOD service. Across Europe, 26% would be interested in streaming

sport on an AVOD service, placing this ahead of all other streaming options, including pay-per-view and monthly subscription services.

“Offering alternative VOD models is key to meeting these consumer demands and responding to changing viewing habits. Consumers want access to more entertainment and research suggests they are happy to watch ads in return for it,” said Anthony Capano, managing director, international at Rakuten Advertising. 

“During this lockdown period, it is crucial for brands to continue advertising and stay connected to their customers in ways that resonate. 41% of consumers in the UK want brands to communicate with them in a realistic fashion during this time of uncertainty, and 39% believe brands that emotionally understand people will succeed post-pandemic. AVOD can associate brands with enjoyable content that is helping people escape today’s challenges,” added Capano.