OTRO drops subscription model just months after launch

Soccer app removes US$3.99 paywall to set up as digital content studio.

31 July 2019 Sam Carp
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Soccer-centric digital platform OTRO is moving away from a subscription model just seven months after launching in December.

The company, which is backed by capital and solutions provider 23 Capital, said that it is removing its paywall to reinvent itself as a digital content studio focused on creating, publishing and distributing original content around soccer.

OTRO launched with a star-studded line-up of 17 current and former players, including Lionel Messi, Neymar Jr and David Beckham, all of whom were pinned down to five-year contracts to create exclusive content with the company.

The brand’s app was initially made available for US$3.99 a month, promising to provide subscribers with access to exclusive live interviews, original documentaries, films and other benefits including the opportunity to win prizes.

The app will now be available for free, continuing to host short and mid-form content, as well as longer form features.

An official statement said that part of the reason for the shift was because OTRO saw content posted on its social channels outside of the paywall perform ‘incredibly well’.

The company has vowed to continue creating content on an exclusive basis, with an increased focus on its social media platforms. It also plans to launch a YouTube channel in the coming weeks.

OTRO currently has around 750,000 followers on Instagram, while its Twitter account is followed by just over 28,000 users. It is not known how many people had subscribed to the OTRO app, but according to data from mobile market insight company Sensor Towers cited by Digiday, the platform has had 262,000 installs to date.

When OTRO launched at the end of last year, the brand’s former chief executive Jeremy Dale spoke to SportsPro about how the company settled on a US$3.99 price point for its app.

“We did a lot of detailed conjoint analysis where we researched in the different countries what the acceptable price points were, and through the model we used we were able to calculate at what price point consumers thought that the price was too cheap, and what percentage thought certain price points were too expensive,” he said.

“There are always some people who think things are too cheap which can actually devalue it, then obviously a price point comes where you lose too many people because they feel it’s too expensive, so this detailed conjoint analysis allowed us to pick those price points.”

Soccer-centric digital platform OTRO is moving away from a subscription model just seven months after launching in December.

The company, which is backed by capital and solutions provider 23 Capital, said that it is removing its paywall to reinvent itself as a digital content studio focused on creating, publishing and distributing original content around soccer.

OTRO launched with a star-studded line-up of 17 current and former players, including Lionel Messi, Neymar Jr and David Beckham, all of whom were pinned down to five-year contracts to create exclusive content with the company.

The brand’s app was initially made available for US$3.99 a month, promising to provide subscribers with access to exclusive live interviews, original documentaries, films and other benefits including the opportunity to win prizes.

The app will now be available for free, continuing to host short and mid-form content, as well as longer form features.

An official statement said that part of the reason for the shift was because OTRO saw content posted on its social channels outside of the paywall perform ‘incredibly well’.

The company has vowed to continue creating content on an exclusive basis, with an increased focus on its social media platforms. It also plans to launch a YouTube channel in the coming weeks.

OTRO currently has around 750,000 followers on Instagram, while its Twitter account is followed by just over 28,000 users. It is not known how many people had subscribed to the OTRO app, but according to data from mobile market insight company Sensor Towers cited by Digiday, the platform has had 262,000 installs to date.

When OTRO launched at the end of last year, the brand’s former chief executive Jeremy Dale spoke to SportsPro about how the company settled on a US$3.99 price point for its app.

“We did a lot of detailed conjoint analysis where we researched in the different countries what the acceptable price points were, and through the model we used we were able to calculate at what price point consumers thought that the price was too cheap, and what percentage thought certain price points were too expensive,” he said.

“There are always some people who think things are too cheap which can actually devalue it, then obviously a price point comes where you lose too many people because they feel it’s too expensive, so this detailed conjoint analysis allowed us to pick those price points.”

OTRO