Satisfy Viewers And Boost Revenue With Video On Demand

published on 08 October 2023


Video on demand (VOD) allows consumers to select and watch video content when they want, rather than having to tune in at a specific broadcast time. For cinemas, implementing a VOD service means giving customers access to films on demand via online streaming or digital downloads. VOD is surging in popularity as viewer habits shift to online and mobile platforms. Offering VOD can help cinemas meet customer demand for instant access while driving incremental revenue outside of traditional ticket sales.

In this post, we’ll look at the explosive rise of VOD and how it benefits both consumers and cinemas. We’ll provide best practices for integrating VOD into existing cinema operations to maximize adoption and revenue. From promotion tactics to technical integrations, we’ll explore proven strategies for VOD success. Filmgrail offers turnkey VOD solutions tailored specifically for cinemas, handling licensing, delivery, apps, and more. Let’s dive in to unlocking the potential of VOD for your cinema!

The Rise of Video On Demand

VOD has fundamentally changed the way we discover and consume video content. According to Deloitte, video streaming accounts for 30% of all TV viewing in 2022, up from just 5% in 2011. Meanwhile, live broadcast TV's share has dropped from 85% to less than 50% over the same period. Younger audiences especially embrace on-demand - a Nielsen study found 87% of Gen Z and Millennials prefer VOD over scheduled programming.

VOD aligns perfectly with shifting viewing habits - it offers control, choice, and convenience through personalized libraries and anytime access. Services like Netflix and Hulu with large content catalogs normalized on-demand viewing. VOD provides a seamless viewing experience across devices. As consumer expectations evolve, VOD offers cinemas immense opportunities to better serve audiences, unlock revenue, and stay competitive as an entertainment destination.

Meeting Customer Demand

Surveys indicate strong consumer demand for on-demand cinema releases. A 2021 study by EY with over 2,500 participants found that 80% of film viewers want access to new theatrical releases at home. VOD enables cinemas to cater to these evolving preferences through instant digital rentals and purchases. From the comfort of home, viewers can stream films on opening weekend and beyond.

VOD also captures casual viewers who enjoy cinema films but don’t regularly visit theaters. By meeting customers anywhere with omnichannel delivery, VOD significantly expands cinemas' reach and revenue potential. Most importantly, VOD improves satisfaction by giving consumers the flexible access they crave. Forward-thinking cinemas are leveraging VOD to better compete with at-home and streaming entertainment.

Maximizing Revenue

For cinemas, VOD represents an entirely new income stream outside of ticket and concession sales. Premium early release windows allow pricing VOD rentals on par with theater tickets to maximize revenue. With the right promotion, VOD captures impulse rentals from viewers less likely to visit theaters, increasing customer lifetime value. VOD also monetizes films throughout their lifecycle, earning revenue during a title's post-theatrical decline.

Bundling VOD with loyalty program subscriptions increases customer lifetime value. When integrated with ticketing and concessions, VOD enables incremental sales during every transaction. With broad content libraries, cinemas can generate continuous revenue between new releases and theater visits. Best of all, delivery costs are minimal compared to operating cinemas. VOD provides attractive margins at scale.

Strategies for Success

Launching a successful VOD service requires the right technology, content, promotions, and integration with your existing systems. The platform should enable purchases across as many channels as possible - online, mobile apps, in-theater kiosks, and POS systems. Integration with loyalty programs and email collection is essential for marketing.

Here are some key strategies and best practices to drive VOD adoption:

  • Curate a diverse content library - Offer a wide selection of new releases, classics, independents, and genre films. Refresh with new titles frequently.

  • Promote new releases - Market premium early access to new films and pre-order opportunities across all channels.

  • Leverage loyalty programs - Offer free rentals or discounts to program members. Integrate rewards for VOD purchases.

  • Simplify commerce - Enable frictionless checkout across devices with integrated customer profiles and payment options.

  • Turn to turnkey solutions - Platforms like Filmgrail handle licensing, delivery, apps, and integration so cinemas can focus on promotion.

Integrating with Current Systems

To maximize adoption, VOD should seamlessly integrate at the backend with cinema apps, websites, POS systems, and loyalty programs. Unified commerce platforms enable customers to easily rent films across any channel thanks to integrated profiles, watchlists, and payment methods. Modern ticketing, concessions, and inventory management systems like Vista and Beyond Cinema can connect to VOD APIs for real-time synchronization.

Email collection and customer data are essential for targeting promotions. With turnkey solutions like Filmgrail, VOD integrates seamlessly with existing cinema tech stacks. Filmgrail handles licensing films from major studios like Warner Bros, Universal, and Sony while building tailored white-label apps so cinemas can get to market quickly and scale.

Promoting the Service

An effective cross-channel promotional strategy is crucial for driving VOD adoption. Social media campaigns, email marketing to loyalty members, pre-roll ads, and in-theater signage all play a role. Dedicated VOD landing pages explain the service, highlight new releases, encourage sign-ups, and link to apps. Promos during ticket and concession purchases raise awareness.

Sneak peek content like trailers and behind-the-scenes footage engages fans. Search engine optimization ensures VOD pages rank highly for relevant searches. With the right messaging and promotions, cinemas can maximize their VOD investment.

The Filmgrail Advantage

Filmgrail offers fully managed VOD solutions designed specifically for cinemas. Filmgrail secures the necessary studio licenses and delivers branded white-label apps for web, mobile, TV, and in-theater devices. The service integrates with existing cinema tech stacks for unified commerce and access.

As an industry specialist, Filmgrail curates relevant cinema content across major studios and independents. New releases are accessible on opening weekend with optimal pricing. Filmgrail's VOD platform handles the streaming, downloads, payments, analytics, and more so cinemas can focus on sales and marketing.

In summary, Filmgrail provides a turnkey VOD solution to help cinemas meet demand, unlock revenue, and keep audiences engaged outside of theater visits.


As consumer viewing habits evolve, VOD represents an essential opportunity for cinemas to better serve audiences when, where, and how they want to watch films. VOD unlocks incremental revenue between theater visits through digital purchases and rentals. With the right content, marketing, and technical integration, cinemas can reap significant rewards.

Turnkey solutions from cinema specialists like Filmgrail enable cinemas to quickly capitalize on the VOD opportunity. By offering customers flexible access along with curated libraries and promotions, cinemas can boost satisfaction and revenue. Explore Filmgrail's VOD platform to stay competitive as an entertainment destination in the on-demand age. With the strategies outlined, cinemas are well-positioned to successfully implement VOD and transform their business for the digital era.

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