And they thought cable was dead…well it is…kind of…at least as a bundled content package…
…but everything is now migrating OTT…

…and content is king…giving those little guys a huge opportunity.

Think about all of the little cable channels you never heard of. Niche networks serving niche audiences with specific programming that never got the time of day. They were buried under an endless and unsearchable cable menu that numbered in the thousands and most of them never had a shot at national distribution.

Enter YouTube and the digital revolution. Think of YouTube as a cable network with even more content than cable. Driven by free-wheeling global access, without the regional licensing and distribution nightmares of cable, their channels are endlessly searchable by keyword and metatagged by interest. The stats are insane.
  • More than 1 billion users
  • Hundreds of millions of hours and billions of views daily
  • Hours people are watching on YouTube is up 50% year over year
  • 300 hours of video are uploaded to YouTube every minute
  • 60% of a creator’s views comes from outside their home country
  • YouTube is localized in 75 countries and available in 61 languages
  • Half of YouTube views are on mobile devices
  • Mobile revenue on YouTube is up over 100% year over year
  • Top YouTube creators were found to be more popular than mainstream celebrities among U.S. teenagers

While many homegrown YouTube channels driven by stars of the new age are starting to eclipse their traditional broadcast brethren, the most watched content is often still repurposed ‘professional’ broadcast fair…why?…because it’s hard to make good content and ‘professional’ production is often still the best.

And who knows how to create and produce professional content at a price point that may now match that of a solid YouTube-born network? You guessed it…all of those wonderfully little niche cable channels you never heard of.

We will soon start to see our favorite niche cable channels break out on digital. I’m also betting some start to abandon cable all together, get lean, and become more profitable with deals from digital networks hungry for content and flush with the cash and advertising rev share that cable never really delivered for them. A pure digital play will get them access to a global audience, not to mention the opportunity of being found with better search against their content that is now hard to find.

The opportunity is going to be with all of those little networks you never heard of.

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