AiThority Interview with Nick Cicero, VP Strategy at Conviva
Please tell us about your role and the team / technology you handle at the company. How did you arrive at Conviva?
My role as VP of Strategy sits between Conviva’s Product, Marketing, and Sales teams to bring social and streaming measurement products to life, and help customers succeed. I joined the company after Conviva acquired the company I founded, Delmondo, where we focused on social media analytics, building the first analytics for Snapchat, Facebook Live, and Instagram Stories.
What is the most contemporary definition of Intelligence Cloud for streaming media? What solutions/ services does Conviva offer to customers?
Conviva is focused on viewer-centric, data-driven intelligence, supporting a majority of the world’s premium publishers with a footprint across 500 million unique viewers watching 180 billion streams per year. Our cloud platform provides AI-powered insights, software, services, and an ecosystem of partners to support critical aspects of streaming businesses from audience engagement and monetization to quality of experience and churn prevention.
How have media streaming tactics evolved in the last 8-10 months? What role has the pandemic played in influencing these trends?
The past 8-10 months have been huge for streaming, particularly for new services that saw a lot of success in acquiring viewers, while viewing also continued to increase for many players that have been in market as well. While some of these growth trends were driven by the pandemic, the temporary increase in in-home pandemic viewing was coupled with a permanent transition to streaming. Many people are worried about the so-called streaming wars, but the biggest competition isn’t between different streaming services, it’s between streaming and linear TV. We saw the significant impact of sports as they were suspended and returned in 2020, looking ahead, the transition of sports to streaming will only accelerate cord cutting.
One of the most popular questions that video marketers are asked — Is TikTok a safe platform to promote branded content? How have brands taken to TikTok’s bans across many regions in recent times?
It’s safe. The biggest brands in the world are advertising on TikTok. From Apple, Amazon, HBO Max, to NBC, the list goes on. TikTok offers a myriad of advertising options to choose from so brands can always pick what is right for them. The most popular at the moment is Brand “Takeover” ads which play as soon as a user opens the app and remains on the screen for at least 3 seconds. Brands love this because it’s not set in between moments, it’s not skippable, and it’s the first thing users see when they open the app. TikTok’s ban in regions is unfortunate for advertisers trying to reach younger audiences in those countries but hasn’t stopped advertisers from using TikTok in the high number of regions where there are not restrictions.
What are the best alternatives to TikTok platform that you have come across?
For advertisers the best social alternatives for vertical advertising remain Instagram Stories and Snapchat. Snapchat’s recently launched Spotlight section is on the radar of brands, although they do not currently offer advertising options there. I expect that to change in the upcoming months as Snapchat continues to invest in that area.
In your recent report on TikTok content, you reported a remarkable growth in the “fan experience” trends. How has TikTok helped brands to acquire more followers and customers through social media?
Brands are always looking for ways to expand their reach and audience and there isn’t a better platform to do that than TikTok. We see brands like Netflix and ESPN earning more than 10 million followers in one year on the platform organically. There is not a better or easier platform right now for brands to expand their organic social reach. For a business like a streaming service, every single one of those followers is either a customer or potential prospect.
What is changing for TikTok in the next 2 years? How do you see influencers working with brands on TikTok stories in the coming?
Influencers drive the trends on TikTok and brands are taking notice. Nearly every advertising activation on TikTok will have some form of influencer involvement in the near future. You will also see TikTok influencers become part of advertiser campaigns outside of TikTok as well. TikTok influencers are some of the most recognized faces in the world with Gen Z, so we expect to start seeing them everywhere, not just in TikTok. I also expect to see ecommerce become a very big part of TikTok’s ecosystem within the next couple years.
Your advice to Video Marketing / Social media marketers for 2021:
Use episodic content by creating series or franchises in your video strategy. Build anticipation and community around your shows to keep viewers coming back for each new episode. Experiment with video off of social and in your mobile apps, websites, or connected TV apps to connect with consumers wherever they watch video.
Thank you, Nick! That was fun and we hope to see you back on AiThority.com soon.
Nick Cicero is a VP Strategy at Conviva
Conviva is the real-time intelligence platform for optimized streaming media. More than 250 industry leaders and brands – including CBS, Cirque Du Soleil, DAZN, HBO, Hulu, Sky, Sling TV, TED, Univision and WarnerMedia – rely on Conviva to maximize their consumer engagement, deliver the quality experiences viewers expect and drive revenue growth. With a global footprint of more than 100 billion streams per year across 3 billion applications streaming on devices, Conviva offers streaming providers unmatched scale for continuous video measurement, intelligence and benchmarking across every second of every stream on every screen.