Ooyala launches personalized video discovery platform

Krystal Peak · April 13, 2012 · Short URL: https://vator.tv/n/25d8

From mobile to desktop, Ooyala's new content discovery system aims to keep viewers glued longer

As the world of online video rockets in popularity, content producers and brands are searching for the best way to deliver the ultimate viewing experience while getting the most effective monetization out of it.

Ooyala, a video technology company, is helping brands zone in on the most personalized and profitable way to share video content online.

And while Ooyala has been providing companies the services need to deliver, manage, and monetize high quality video content since 2007, today they launch some new products that personalize the content to the viewer and provide more in-depth analytics for improving future content. Since inception, Ooyala has raised more than $40 million in venture capital for improving the marketplace of video content services online.

This new product, referred to as a tool of content discovery, enables publishers to increase their advertising revenue on multi-screen experiences by tailoring content to the unique viewer. 

For example, if a person goes to ESPN's website from their iPad to watch clips from a recent basketball game, the content discovery tool would then monitor the viewer's habits based on that given device and might suggest follow-up content of a similar length that others watching that show enjoyed. I know that my viewing habits on my laptop are different than my viewing habits from my iPhone or my HDTV.

On my laptop I might watch a single episode of a TV program and would be more likely to watch a movie on my television and a music clip on my iPhone. Ooyala's new product can tailor those habits and make sure not to suggest content that is much shorter or longer than you usually watch on that device -- this also translates to smart ads that fit the profile of the viewer and aren't 30 seconds long when you are watching a four minute clip. 

These types of tailored options for a brand's viewers increases the likelihood that they will remain on the site and discover more content that is enjoyable to them -- thus resulting in more video ads viewed and more revenue dollars.

In pre-release ,with select customers, Ooyala found that the tailored content was already driving a four-fold increase in consumer engagement, meaning longer viewing periods, more videos completed and ultimately improved monetization. 

I sat down with Bismarck Lepe, Ooyala's co-founder and president of products, the other day and he explained to me that as more people shift the time they are watching video content to online methods, people are going to gravitate to the services that have the best elements of television with the personalized aspects of on-demand viewing.

"With only about 10% of the video viewing population spending a significant amount of time online, the video management field is wide open," Lepe said. "But it is the experience that people are going to compare when they make their choice on what sites they will come back to over and over again."

This may sound similar to advertising experiences, and it is to a degree, but since the video is what brings the consumer to a site and the content that they like is what keeps them their through the commercial, creating a better system of content suggestion and discovery is crucial in improving the online streaming ecosphere.

Companies already using Ooyala technology include ESPN, Victoria’s Secret, Telegraph Media Group, Tennis Australia, The North Face, Rolling Stone, Dell, Sephora and Yahoo! Japan. Headquartered in Mountain View, California.

With online video advertising poised to reach $6 billion by 2015, Ooyala wants to get everyone from the content creators like cable channels and news outlets to retailers and food brands looking to offer video supplements online to think of their streaming content online as a commodity that is just as valuable (if not more) than anything they place on TV.

And sInce viewers online are already offering up so much content about when they like to watch video, for how long, about what topics, etc., there is a great deal more valuable data that brands can learn from and monetize far better than TV or theater viewers. 

Ooyala hopes that by analyzing the billions of data points each day, in real time, that it can provide its customers with insight on what content is trending and how they can retain their audience rather than waiting to for daily, weekly, or quarterly reports to show the information far after the fact.

From the test cases that Ooyala looked at prior to today's release, it saw a one-third drop in the abandonment rate of viewers after 10 videos -- so it was able to monetize a sizable audience that stayed to view relevant content , rather than click away after one or three videos. For some big video producers this could translate to $2 million more advertising revenue in a given month. 

As the online viewing and advertising experience become more personalized, both the creators and the consumers will see a less fractured video concept online which makes this reporter (that cut the cord two years ago) very happy.

Support VatorNews by Donating

Read more from our "Trends and news" series

More episodes

Related Companies, Investors, and Entrepreneurs



Joined Vator on

Ooyala is a video technology company that provides an integrated platform enabling the delivery, management, and monetization of high quality video content. Focused on innovation and scalability, Ooyala is committed to providing the most comprehensive video solutions to companies worldwide.Ooyala is headquartered in Mountain View, Ca with sales operations in New York, NY and London, UK. 

"Ooyala" means cradle in Telugu, a Southern Indian language. We like the name because it demonstrates what we are doing -- cradling a new form of innovation.

Ooyala was founded in early 2007 by Sean Knapp, Belsasar Lepe and Bismarck Lepe - all former Google employees. While at Google, they worked on the development and launch of various monetization and content distribution products such as AdSense, AdWords and Google Web Search. After four years of engineering and product development at the biggest Internet company in the world, the three left Google to start Ooyala. Ooyala has raised over 10 million dollars in funding and has in excess of 5000 publishers using its syndication platform - Backlot. Ooyala's goal is to build a successful technology company that focuses on delivering the best video experience to video content providers, advertisers and most importantly consumers.



Bismarck Lepe

Joined Vator on


Sean Knapp

Joined Vator on


Belsasar Lepe

Joined Vator on