Ecosystems open new worlds of partnership, product extension and
customer interaction. Power players within them can drive vast amounts of
new value. How to grab the opportunity?
Few recognized just how ground-breaking Apple’s App Store would be when it
launched. Now we understand it as the best contemporary example of ecosystem
innovation: a new world of content and method of monetization, on top of core
device revenue. It also created a new niche market, changed mobile software and
drove a cultural phenomenon. There’s room to do something similar in other markets.
Industry food for thought
The benefits for you are clear: a broader proposition and increased customer engagement, incremental revenue and low risk. Your path to achieving this sort of innovation differs depending on your starting point.
Content creators and broadcasters
Ecosystem innovation could come from how these companies manage their
distribution partners for content (either clips or full shows), content production partners, technology partners, advertisers or within emerging spaces like AR and VR to build new ecosystems of creatives. Another angle for ecosystem innovation is the business model around IP usage, including potential rewards programs for consumers (with appropriate tracking mechanisms in place).
New licensing models within AR and VR, and the ecosystem within them, could be interesting. Thinking outside of the box is key to providing incentives for both broadcaster and partner to benefit from an ecosystem relationship.
Operators and CSPs
Connecting other products and services with video is the logical innovation here. Operators and CSPs must develop a multi-sided business model to better compete with platform companies that already have that advantage. They should look to create the right value exchange with high speed internet services and smart connectivity … both within and outside the home … to drive ecosystem partnerships. They can do this by leveraging concepts like outcome-based connectivity monetization and smart connectivity (for both wholesale and retail).
Platforms typically are ecosystems already, so the challenge here is to innovate on what you’re already doing. For example, YouTube is a platform that supports a network of content creators and advertisers. YouTube collects revenue from providing tools for creation, upload, playback and monetization without ever having to create content. As everyone tries to copy their model, they need to do new, better things to stay ahead.