RTL Croatia streams with HolaCDN

Guillaume Rabhi, Director of Digital Media: “I see HolaCDN helping us to raise our ad revenues, by providing a better video streaming experience to our users”

Guillaume Rabhi, Director of Digital Media

2016 - uplifting the user experience

Over the past few years, RTL has consistently enriched its video content - providing more videos, and at higher quality (bitrates). In 2016, the company realized that the user experience had reached a critical level and had to be addressed. The first step had to be to measure the user experience, and then figure out how to improve it.

"Analyze this" - sure, but how?

Guillaume Rabhi, Director of Digital Media for RTL Croatia, defined three key performance indicators (KPIs) that need to be measured: Video bitrate, video start time, and video buffering. “User experience-related indicators are among the performance indicators we find most important, even more so in view of our future plans to incorporate more online and mobile content.”. Traditional CDNs can provide information about amount of data served from their servers, and about their servers’ response rate, but could not provide Guillaume with the KPI measurements he needed because they are not incorporated in the web page, and thus have no knowledge about the users’ real experience.

Integrating the HolaCDN Video Analytics Module enabled Guillaume to keep track of the KPIs he defined and get an in-depth view of their users' viewing experience through HolaCDN’s user experience dashboard. The integration required a small change to the RTL web site, and did not change any of the existing workflows.

For the first time, RTL was able to measure the quality of its video streaming, as experienced by its users.

More improvement than expected

Monitoring was just the first step. RTL wanted to improve the users' experience. Better user experience means more video watched which means - more ads watched. With the help of HolaCDN, RTL Croatia did just that.

After measurement was done, RTL enabled HolaCDN’s streaming service in the HolaCDN dashboard, and was able to compare HolaCDN’s streaming user experience to the previous CDN. Again, no workflow changes were done, since HolaCDN uses the existing CDN as its origin server.

The results were clear: HolaCDN’s streaming not only ended user complaints,, but also yielded a significant increase in the time users spent watching videos.

What made these enhancements possible was HolaCDN's mid-stream switching. Mid-stream technology means that rather than streaming the video from a single server, client-side code makes a real-time decision on which server to stream a video from, and turn to use a different server if needed.

Combining HolaCDN's client-side algorithm and user analytics enables RTL Croatia to constantly analyze and improve their website's video viewing experience.

Leveraging HolaCDN to increase revenues from advertisements

Today's online world places content selection entirely in the hands of the user. Measuring user interaction is the key to improving performance, increasing engagement, and eventually, producing more relevant content.

Creating and serving more interesting and appealing content, at high quality and with high user engagement, makes RTL videos attractive to advertisers, who are key partners to the RTL eco-system.

“In the upcoming year, I see HolaCDN helping us provide more value for our advertisers, raising our revenues from advertisements by steadily increasing the time users spend watching videos online”.