Academy blog

Can you guess which KPI is the most reliable for your online video service?

The answer is User Churn.

Technical, operational, consumption and performance KPIs must be monitored at all times but the reality is that these indicators are just the guts that drive a bigger phenomenon called user churn.

User churn is the one KPI that can demonstrate the health of your service and the one that should push you as an online video provider towards improvement to retain your user base and by doing so increase it.

Why would you increase your audience if you are focusing on user retention?

The straight-up answer is word of mouth. Even in 2018, when we are surrounded by advertising both online and offline of all sorts, word of mouth (the oldest marketing tool) is still the most effective. We as social beings tend to talk about our memorable experiences, knowledge, people, and ideas.  

At some point, your service will pop up in your users’ discussions within their social circle at any time. As seen in the picture down below, people talk when: “they are compelled to talk about something”, that means that if you give them a reason to talk about your service they will. 


Word-of-mouth – Source: Idea Sandbox

People tend to share bad experiences more than positive ones. This reality creates an unbalance in their experience that you must compensate for. If your users don’t find compelling content to entertain themselves with, they will lose sight of the value offered by your service. Same goes for the quality of experience.

If one of these two factors keep on happening, your churn rates will increase far beyond the 50% likelihood of churn. But it doesn’t stop there, you will lose more potential customers as a result of the word of mouth generated by churners (customers that have left your service).  Ultimately by not focusing on this KPI and letting it get out of hand, your user cost of acquisition will see itself negatively impacted.

In every day more competitive market of online video, users have many other options to go to if they are not satisfied with your service. Don’t let this happen. Use prediction algorithms to your advantage and get ahead of your customers.

This is what you can do to counter it:

  • Look at what’s going on within your platform
  • Evaluate your average user’s journey and compare it to the one of your endangered population (users with high risks of churn)
  • Start by looking at the differences in both populations’ experience (these can either be: technical issues, content availability, presentation related, device-oriented or even your UX/UI)
  • Once you find all issues that pollute your endangered users’ experience, fix them ASAP and keep on watching out for them in the future.
  • Trigger your endangered population’s interest by giving them a reason to comeback and give your service one last shot. This can be done through promotions, new releases or even new features.
  • Prior to implantation, test these actions on your endangered population and monitor the change in user performance. If successful implement it.


NPAW team of video data engineers have developed SmartUsers, a powerful AI driven module that will grant you the visibility on user behavior and churn you need to reduce churn rates. Have a look here.

Max Gayler on March 28th 2018

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