How to plan your OTT content as offered to the viewer

Key for a prominent Pay TV company in Southeast Asia, was the VOD Nodes & Offers functionality in WHATS’ON.


As everything revolves around the user experience, media companies are constantly re-thinking the way their content is offered to the viewer. To make the viewer watch more and stay longer, they may mix different pieces of content from different sources, compose packages, and propose enhanced access to the content on their platform.

This makes it difficult for schedulers to keep the overview. In the long list of available content on the platform, schedulers can easily miss where the platform offers the same content from different providers in different categories, also because the content has different IDs and possibly even different titles.


That is why VOD Nodes & Offers in WHATS’ON enables schedulers to view the offer from the front end, as it were, with titles, shows or episodes in a viewer-centric categorization and structure. The functionality significantly enhances efficiency in planning as it enables schedulers to create a structured, data enriched planning and see exactly what content is part of which offering(s), and where it is made available.

In the case of the Pay TV company on whose request this functionality was developed, VOD Nodes & Offers helps to integrate their VOD selling and distribution process, instead of completely managing categories and offers on the platforms, separated from where the content is.


For a VOD service the interface with the node wall where the catalogue of content is presented to the viewer is the most important marketing and communication tool. This information needs to be constantly tuned to keep the viewer engaged.

Nodes contain artwork of movies and series or messages that all have something in common that can entice the viewer at a certain point in time. They are all new, or all seasonal (e.g. Valentine’s day) or all originals, most watched, recommended …

With the choice and position of the nodes on the screen, and the position of the different titles with their artwork within the swimlane or carousel of a node, the content curator decides which titles get a prominent position for a period of time. The artwork for a title can change from node to node, from time to time, and even from viewer to viewer.

This same structure is translated into WHATS’ON so the schedulers can have easy access to add or remove titles, add new nodes or rearrange, modify and remove the existing ones or change the hierarchy. They can view material statuses, metrics, and past and future trends.

Also, users can plan beforehand when a certain product is to move to another category (e.g. from ‘New’ to ‘Drama’). For personalized categories, WHATS’ON delivers the content data to the recommendation engine, which links this input to the viewer profile.

Added advantages are the option to handle pre-entered metadata per node which the titles can inherit, and the option to link titles and nodes in bulk, with just a few clicks.


The VOD offers make it possible in WHATS’ON to compose a package offer for the viewer (e.g. Star Wars movies), set a price for it and define the duration of the promotion. The VOD offers can be SVOD subscriptions, TVOD viewings per title or per season etc. They carry unique metadata, such as price code, titles and descriptions, start and expiry dates, that the platforms need to enable the end purchase. WHATS’ON factors in all the promotions when calculating the revenue shares.

Both VOD nodes and VOD offers have a set of tools and gadgets developed specifically for them, which significantly improve the overview and the efficiency of VOD planning.

Also read the article on OTT strategy and how to maximize OTT ROI.

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