Defining a digital content & services product roadmap

A leading fixed-mobile telecommunications operator in the Kingdom saw potential in those numbers. All that demand for digital content could be tapped to better engage its customers.

Defining a digital content & services product roadmap

A leading fixed-mobile telecommunications operator in the Kingdom saw potential in those numbers. All that demand for digital content could be tapped to better engage its customers.

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Saudi Arabia has proven to be a hot market for the consumption of digital content. At a bit over two-thirds of the population, Internet penetration in the Kingdom is still low compared with developed markets. But those who are online are voracious users, viewing well over 90 million videos per day on YouTube alone.

A leading fixed-mobile telecommunications operator in the Middle East saw potential in those numbers. It had already set up a digital new businesses, as part of its Innovation and Corporate Venturing efforts, to target the growing digital media sector. All that demand for digital content could be tapped to better engage its customers. It was also an opportunity to provide significant value added services, generate new revenue streams, and move away from being a “dumb pipe” for data transmission. The operator therefore launched a new business unit dedicated to development of digital content, with the focus on various paid TV services, such as catch-up TV and video on demand. (The firm also launched an appstore; for more information, see our case study on partnership management for the appstore.)

The challenge: what do people want to watch?

Getting the strategy and strategy execution management into place for the new business unit was no small task. (See the SCG case study on this for more information.) But it turned out that selecting the right mix of content was also a formidable challenge. The operator was anxious to see its investment be put to good use and wanted to know the types of content that the digital business unit would put on offer. It also needed to have at least a rough schedule for the planned rollout of product and services in the short- and long-term, anticipated service uptake rates, and associated costs, so that it could plan and forecast its own growth and growth-related activities.

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