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The Netflix Effect and the Race for the Most Original Show

A race among streaming giants has begun. Profit lies with the most original show and the highest-value production. (Image:  Televisione Streaming via flickr  CC BY 2.0)
A race among streaming giants has begun. Profit lies with the most original show and the highest-value production. (Image: Televisione Streaming via flickr CC BY 2.0)

The TV-show production market is booming more than ever these days, with new shows popping up like mushrooms after the rain. With the technology our digital day and age offers the means to stream, such shows are becoming just as diverse.

Entertainment providers like Netflix, YouTube, Verizon and others have realized the financial advantage of bringing in-house-made shows on board. Internet video providers are now trying to find the show that will make it stand out from the rest of the entertainment providers out there. This new type of digital entertainment race has been coined “The Netflix Effect”.

The streaming giants are on the hunt for original shows and movies. The competition among these streaming giants is the real deal, and has even forced rivals like Amazon.com and Hulu to start doing the same.

The turn side of this TV-show race is that smaller production companies have more chances than ever to make a break in the entertainment business, as long as they can offer something fresh and original. Just a little more than a year ago, this market did not exist. That’s how fast things can change.

 

Each streaming provider is trying to fill a niche of their own. Netflix currently has more than a dozen original series, among them comedies, dramas, and cartoons, and trust me, the number is scheduled to go even higher in the coming months and into 2016.

Thanks to the TV series Transparent, Amazon is also out there among the pack. Hulu was very busy producing comedy this year, and has apparently ordered some more dramas, “including a mini-series based on Stephen King’s novel 11/22/63”, an article in Bloombergweek reports.

To make a difference, streaming providers are positioning themselves by specializing in a category of content and its format, such as long-form and short-form videos.

An example of the short-form model is Snapchat’s videos. These videos are formatted for best viewing on a smart phone, usually sourced from sites like BuzzFeed and Comedy Central. With a swipe of the thumb, the viewer can hop from one clip to another. For ladies who are interested in this format, you might want to check out Refinery29, which more or less focuses on women, while Vimeo is aiming more towards the “art-house” fare.

Each streaming provider would like to have his own little collection of shows and series that stand out from the rest.

“Exclusiveness has worked effectively for Netflix. Others are trying to accomplish that in the long-form and short-form game,” chief operating officer of consultant Manatt Digital Media, Peter Csathy, told Bloombergweek.

But in case you think you know them all, embrace yourself. There are two new kids on the block, called YouTube Red and Go90. While YouTube Red is geared more toward teens outlining YouTube’s biggest stars, Go90, who by the end of 2015 will apparently have programming deals with about 100 production companies, is planing to come in big-style. Verizon wants Go90 to lift off and is ready to burn as much money as it takes.

Considering the budget needed to work with 100 companies, Verizon is still pulling out a bargain, since production cthat mpanies like Endemol Beyond and New Form Digital are much cheaper to roll with than Fox or Paramount.

“The production value is in a nice economic sweet spot. You’re talking about spending hundreds of thousands, and not millions, on series,” says chief operating officer and president of Endemol, Adrian Sexton.

The race is tight and the competitors ruthlessly creative. We’ll just have to wait and see who will stream through the finishing scene first.

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