Case Study: When short-form video enables long-form video

OTT platforms are strengthening connect with audiences through short-video apps.


Mumbai: What is the most strikingly common feature between "Mirzapur: Season two," "Bigg Boss: Season 15," and the Indian Premier League (IPL) 2021? All three are big-ticket, entertaining OTT releases in the past year. But an even more compelling factor is that they have captured the attention of the audiences via multiple campaigns hosted on short-video app Josh. This is significant of a larger pattern, wherein, OTT platforms are now seeing the increasing benefit in reaching out to the audiences through homegrown short-video apps.

Onset of Josh’s OTT saga

India has a voracious appetite for video content. The success story of these offerings showcases the fact that both short-form and long-form videos are proactively meeting the content needs of users across the country. The video content boom, which began in the early days of the pandemic, with nearly 350 million people consuming videos online in India, will only rise upwards. As per a Bain & Company report, it is further expected to reach 600 – 650 million in 2025.  While short-form videos provide users with snackable content that is quick and easy to consume, long-form video caters to their need for in-depth content with a lengthier viewing experience.

A new trend to have emerged in recent times is that OTT platforms are leveraging these consumption patterns in collaboration with short-video platforms to promote their own content and reach wider audiences. This is where Josh’s saga with popular OTT platforms begins. The app has crafted and curated some of the most successful campaigns using hashtags, soundboards, filters, and influencers to promote a variety of web series, movies, sports leagues, and reality shows.

Promoting Web Series

In a long-standing partnership with Amazon Prime Video, Josh has promoted several popular Prime productions such as "Mirzapur season 2," "Sherni," "Jai Bhim," "Sarpatta" and "Malik." The partnership boasts spectacular results with the most popular campaign gaining 170+ million video views, 5.5K UGC videos, and 15+ million hearts.

Furthermore, Josh’s partnership with Voot has resulted in exciting campaigns for the new season of the popular reality TV show "Bigg Boss." Two campaigns, the #BiggBoss15AsliFan and the #BiggBossOTTChallenge, were launched to promote season 15. With unique soundboards specific to different local languages, dynamic filters, and hashtags to enhance top-of-the-mind recall, they garnered a total of 654+ million video views, 30K+ UGC videos, and 51+ million hearts.

What is interesting is that Josh’s campaign trail is not limited to web series, but also covers other genres of entertainment such as music, movies, and sports, among others.

Amplifying sport challenges

Sports shows have an inbuilt tendency to attract audience frenzy. With its reach and power of amplification, Josh added to the existing thrill with some popular campaigns.

For the Abu Dhabi T-10 League on Voot, Josh created filters, in-video transitions, and a theme song. The challenge succeeded in its mission of engagement, garnering 272+ million video views, 12+ K UGC videos, and 21+ million hearts.  To organically promote the latest season of IPL and the anthem created by Nucleya for the teams with Disney+ Hotstar, an influencer-led campaign titled #IndiaKiVibeAlagHai was created. Best of Josh’s creators were given free reign to choose the team they wanted and amplify the tournament on the app. The campaign garnered 16+ million video views, 50+ influencer videos, and 310+K hearts.

When the Pro Kabaddi League returned to our screens for its latest edition on Star Sports, the app promoted it via a fun and engaging #LePanga challenge. Creating a sport-centric hook step, a dynamic filter, a catchy soundboard, the campaign garnered 179+ million video views, 5.9+ K UGC videos and 13.9+ million hearts.

The power of Bharat’s short video

As a homegrown short-video app, Josh has held an understanding of local context. Using its tact of connecting effortlessly with local audiences, it helped create a captivating campaign for Zee Bangla’s show "Uma." With the hashtag #UmaChallenge, which is based on the show’s theme of cricket, female users were asked to balance a ball on a bat for 10 seconds. The app helped the platform reach out to a vast Bengali user base in the country creating over eight million video views, 140+ UGC videos, and 630+ K hearts.

Summing the impact of Josh’s local reach, VerSe innovation chief revenue officer Sunil Kumar Mohapatra said, “As a homegrown short-video app, we understand the users of Bharat and their content needs. As OTT platforms increasingly meet the local language content needs of Bharat, we, at Josh, by leveraging our talented creator community and our understanding of the local context are enabling these platforms to reach out to wider and relevant audiences, as we operate at the intersection of our user preferences, creators needs, and brand propositions.”

Indeed, short-video platforms are becoming an increasingly viable route for OTT platforms to promote their content largely because of their snackable quality. The method of promotion becomes even more effective given the rise of local language content and homegrown short-video apps that have cracked the code of engagement for such content and its audiences. 

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