What we learned from “How OTT brands can win back Gen Z”


by Editorial Staff

Can OTT brands win back the attention of Gen Z? Discover more about the behaviors of this new generation of fans


by Editorial Staff

Can OTT brands win back the attention of Gen Z? Discover more about the behaviors of this new generation of fans

We recently hosted a webinar featuring Mike Stanley (Lead Consultant, Two Circles) and Nick Cicero (VP Strategy, Conviva), alongside our very own Simone Turner (Product Engagement Lead, Deltatre) and Simon Farrant (Senior Product Marketing Manager, Deltatre). Below, you can find some of the key learnings from this session.

When we talk about Gen Z, we’re really talking about audience fragmentation – and Gen Z have become an obsession for the sport and media industries. What insights have you encountered that tell us more about how Gen Z’s behaviors are evolving?

Nick summarized his experiences with social media analytics, and how the rapidly changing social landscape has influenced Gen Z behavior:

“All of the major social platforms have now shifted to video, in some shape or form. […] Most millennials can probably remember a time when there wasn’t Facebook. Gen Z has grown up in the era of social video. When I was growing up, we had a lot fewer places to go to become part of a fan community. Today there’s an endless amount of options for content consumption.”

Mike then addressed three common myths that have emerged around Gen Z consumers, referencing insights from a recent Two Circles study:

“The first common myth is that Gen Z doesn’t like sports. That really just isn’t true, and the interest in sport has been consistent across generations. The change we see is about the breadth of content available.”



How OTT brands can win back Gen Z

Watch the full webinar

Gen Z tend to follow a larger number of sports than previous generations. This is likely due to the sheer volume of sports content now available, making it easier than ever to keep up with various different sports and teams.

“The second myth is around short attention spans. Gen Z do have long attention spans they just need the right content. […] They’re consuming more condensed replays and highlights formats that are five to 10 minutes long.”

“Thirdly, it’s about dispelling this myth about free content. […] When we put out a survey question around willingness to pay for sport, two-thirds of Gen Z were willing to pay more than $10. Again, it’s just about giving them the right content.”

A Deloitte report earlier this year highlighted that Gen Z aren’t as interested in TV and films as other demographics – they’re more engaged with gaming and interactive content. How should brands and clients address this?

Nick spoke to the importance of combining different platforms, rather than just comparing the time spent between them:

“We’re past the point of asking ‘should we be on a particular platform’ it’s now about when to be on each platform, and to what extent. […] You have to look at all of these platforms together. Every person only has 24 hours in a day. We may multitask and look at different screens, but we need to focus on the right mix of platforms to engage this audience.”

“(Gaming) also opens up a new opportunity. You need to figure out the right pockets to tap into, and how to take advantage of the content that can be created around them.”

Mike continued to build on the idea of gaming opportunities, and how brands need to embrace different channels and platforms:

“Streaming is often pitted against gaming but in the sports world, it’s all consumption at the end of the day. Within sport, there’s real opportunity for gaming. […] It’s about trying to build a closer relationship with that fan or viewer, and how you might be able to offer them something else within your suite of products.”


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Over-the-top (OTT) brands need to remain agile and flexible when trying to connect with Gen Z. Winning back these viewers is about acknowledging their consumption habits and capitalizing on them, rather than pushing back against them.

When thinking about how to use data most effectively when engaging this audience, it’s important to consider how clients prioritize their objectives. How do they structure their thinking when looking to reach Gen Z fans?

Simone highlighted the unique challenges and circumstances that different clients face when trying to connect to new audiences:

“It’s a different situation for different platforms, different apps, and different customers. A lot of clients have Gen Z at the core of their strategy, because they recognize that nurturing this audience will help them to future-proof their business.”

“It’s also about balancing out the ability to meet the requirements of Gen Z with your current fans. It’s not necessarily a trade-off. Rather than diverting resources to various cohorts, it’s an opportunity to usher in new and innovative digital experiences.”

While Gen Z may be a fruitful demographic to target for OTT brands, it’s also important that existing audiences aren’t neglected. However, if focusing on Gen Z leads to the creation of new and exciting digital experiences, this can help to elevate the complete offering of OTT brands.

For more insights on Gen Z consumption and media engagement, check out the full webinar here.