The ecology of new media content still in its infancy in India: Ankit Paul, UCWeb
Paul, Country Lead - Monetisation Strategy and Programmatic at UCWeb, tells us about the platform’s shift from a browsing tool to a content platform, and more
With its shift from a browsing tool to a content platform, UC browser is offering new formats of content like short videos, GIFs, memes, audio content and more to have better engagement with its customers.
With a user base of 130 million, UC Browser is looking to fulfil the needs of its user base by offering trendy, valuable and varied content. The brand has plans to launch a new category ‘UC Mini’ for short videos and content soon in the Indian market.
According to Ankit Paul, Country Lead - Monetization Strategy and Programmatic at UCWeb, “There is a rapid rise in internet user base for leisure content, especially entertainment and sports and UC Browser is looking to tap in both the categories and enrich the content supply. This will be beneficial for satisfying user demands and will lead to better retention”.
User retention in the mobile world is a very crucial factor, when asked about the current user retention rate at UC and what new strategies the brand is deploying to increase it, Paul said, “Our user stickiness rate has been growing at a strong rate. We had a record of over 4 billion content consumption for cricket-related content IPL 2019 and ICC World Cup 2019. During the IPL event, the average page view per visit was 5.4 in 2018, which increased to 6.28 in 2019. The total content consumption of UC Miss Cricket reached 60 million in 2019, which is much higher than 2018’s 19 million”.
UC Browser owns around 20 channels in which, entertainment and sports are the strongest categories in mobile content consumption for Indian users on UC’s news feed platform. “Based on this, UC not only provides users with exclusive trailers and tidbits, but also produces short-form content related to movies and TV shows,” Paul added.
Talking about the new tools the brand is offering to attract more marketers to the platform, Paul explained, “We are leveraging UC influencer network and content lab. It enables marketers to brief the right content creators, generate branded buzz content from influencers and distribute the content via smart algorithm to the targeted audiences on UC browser app, all done by UC Ads platform”.
He added, “We believe UC Media Lab (formerly known as UC Trends) can empower Indian content creators and advertisers, helping them understand users’ interests and demands for content. Our motive is to bridge the need for all three parties, i.e user, content creators, and advertisers to improve the whole content ecosystem.”
“Only when the right content finds the right users, can creators develop better content and gain traffic and engagement” Paul asserted.
According to him, UC Browser is witnessing an increase in the amount of consumption in content from tier 2 and 3 cities and a majority of the regional users prefer content in their native language. When asked about the growth potential in the Indian market with so much competition prevalent in the content world?
Paul said, “With a large population waiting to get online; there is scope for multiple players to succeed. The ecology of new media content is still in its infancy in India. The content supply is insufficient, but the market prospect is broad. The Indian market has tremendous growth potential and offers a large user base. A huge market is accompanied by many challenges, but we are confident about solving the difficulties and will keep investing in the Indian market”.
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