Gen Z Is Ditching TV Shows, Movies on Streaming Services in Favor of Social Video, Live Streams

60% of Gen Zers surveyed by Deloitte said they prefer user-generated content videos because its easier to find something to watch

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Gen Z is ditching TV shows and movies on streaming services in favor of social video and live streams, according to a new survey of 3,517 online consumers by Deloitte.

The study, which was conducted in October, found that nearly half of Gen Z respondents (47%) and a third of millennials surveyed said they prefer to watch social video and live streams, compared to 24% and 27% who prefer old and new TV shows and 11% and 18% who prefer old and new movies, respectively.

Courtesy of Deloitte

One reason behind the shift may be related to price. About 52% of Gen Z respondents and 54% of millennials have canceled a paid streaming service in the last six months, compared to 43% of Boomers and Gen X.

About 36% of respondents surveyed said that SVOD content isn’t worth the price, with 48% saying they would cancel their favorite subscription if its cost increased by $5 per month. Gen Z and millennials surveyed pay an average of $63 and $67 per month, respectively, while Gen X and Boomers pay $62 and $53 per month.

Courtesy of Deloitte
Courtesy of Deloitte

Another reason may be the ease of finding content. About 60% of Gen Zers surveyed said that they prefer watching user-generated content videos because its easier to find something to watch.

Nearly 50% said they spend too much time looking for streaming content to watch. More than half (54%) of millennials and Gen Z believe they get better recommendations for TV shows and movies from social media than from streaming services, and around a third of consumers – and 59% of Gen Z – surveyed said they often watch TV shows or movies on SVOD services after hearing about them online.

Courtesy of Deloitte

“The biggest challenge for SVOD providers may be philosophical: They no longer address a mass culture, but rather a fragmented landscape of competing digital entertainment options,” the Deloitte analysts wrote. “Trying to rebuild pay TV business models around streaming services could help reduce SVOD churn and slow attrition in the near-term, but the long game for success will likely involve reinventing the medium to be more personalized, more shoppable and more social. Providers will likely also need to widen their scope beyond TV and films to reach modern audiences and make their intellectual property work across social and video games.”

According to Deloitte, 49% of survey respondents said they want content that’s more personalized, while 47% said they would spend more time on streaming services if it was easier to find. Over half of consumers surveyed added that they would agree to a year-long subscription if it offered a discounted rate.

One potential opportunity to win consumers back is through bundling. About 67% of survey respondents saying they would like a bundle that lets them search for content across all their SVOD services. 63% said they would like the option to mix and match a customized bundle of SVOD services every month and 45% said they’d pay an additional fee to access all their streaming video subscriptions in one place.

Another is through advertising. About 33% of consumers surveyed, including 59% of Gen Z and 49% of millennials, said they are influenced to make purchasing decisions from social media ads or product reviews, compared to 15% of respondents, including 18% of Gen Z and millennials, who said the same for streaming services. 42% of consumers surveyed said they’d be more willing to watch ads personalized to their interests, while nearly 40% of Gen Z and millennials said they’d like the ability to click on ads through SVOD services to be able to get more information about products and purchase them directly.

Courtesy of Deloitte
Courtesy of Deloitte

Additionally, streamers should be tapping into more diverse content. About 66% of consumers surveyed said they enjoy watching TV shows and movies that help them learn about cultures different from their own. That figure included 74% of millennial respondents, 68% of Gen Z respondents and 67% of Gen X and Boomer respondents. More than 40% of consumers surveyed found social video to be more diverse than TV shows and movies. That figure increased to 60% for Gen Z and over 50% for Black, multiracial, Hispanic and Latinx and LGBTQIA+ consumers.

“The industry has had 20 years to understand the size and shape of streaming disruption,” the analysts added. “Now they should come together to work to build something truly complementary.”

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