The Future of Channel 4

As we have completed our latest Video On Demand campaign across multi VOD channels including All4 for one of our clients and are currently evaluating the campaign results, it was interesting to read what the channel 4/All4’s future entails.

It promises to be “More radical” as its digital strategy proceeds and has identified three areas of growth to focus on over the next year.

Channel 4’s “Future4” strategy aims to ensure Channel 4 remains fit for the digital age. it plans to double the viewing of its on-demand platform All 4 to 2 billion by 2025, while growing digital advertising to 30% of its total revenues and non-advertising revenues to 10%.

However, with All 4 viewing already up 29% year on year, Channel 4 is now forecast to achieve 1.5 billion views by the end of 2021.

Channel 4 is also well on its way to achieving its advertising revenue targets, with 19% of revenue coming via digital advertising and 9% through non-advertising.

Much of these increases can be attributed to the change of audience viewing habits during and coming out of the Covid 19 pandemic and is not unusual for VOD platforms, though Channel 4’s advertising revenues from digital is over 50% higher than the rest of the UK TV market (according to COO Jonathan Allan)

Meanwhile, the launch of digital content unit 4Studio last year – which focuses on producing content for social media – has seen Channel 4 overtake LadBible, Disney and the BBC as the most viewed branded content partner in the UK, reaching over 90% of 18- to 34-year-olds.

There are three new areas being invested in to help deliver more value for viewers..

Firstly, the broadcaster plans to lean further into its success as a channel for young audiences, to “bind” successive generations of young British viewers to “strong, valuable and trustworthy” public service media.

Channel 4 will therefore invest a further £50m in content for younger viewers, ranging from “binge-able” drama to current affairs. The new content will appear in the 2023 schedule.

A further £5m will be invested into documentaries that reflect the lives of young people in Britain, and the broadcaster’s planned investment into social media-oriented teen content will be tripled.

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