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Going local for Global OTT
Content localization

Entertainment transcends boundaries, language or geographic. The myriad of entertainment content on offer on video platforms like Netflix, Amazon Prime, Zee5 is not the only thing that makes these platforms unique or global, the availability of these TV shows, movies and documentaries in a wide number of localizations is a crucial factor that is adding to the success of these platforms. People like content and what’s better than watching a high production content tailored and localized in their own language.

This increasing appetite for regional content internationally, is also very evident by the revenues generated by movies such as Dangal. Originally released as a Hindi movie produced by Disney in Bollywood (The coveted Indian version of Hollywood) that ended up grossing over USD 233 million in Chinese, Turkish, Japanese and American box offices as compared to only USD 80 million at its home box office.

Zee5 is a perfect example of a global video streaming platform that is trying to capitalize on this opportunity. Initially targeting Indian content and audience in over 190 countries, Zee5 is now catering to an even broader demographic with five new international languages in addition to the 12 existing regional ones.

So what is localization?

Well, in short, it’s the process of making the content suitable for a particular region, done mostly through the addition of language subtitles and audio translations.

In reality from a platform owners perspective, it’s much more than just mere addition of subtitles and audio tracks. The localization process involves many stakeholders, from LSPs (Language Service Providers), third-party audio translation studios to content editors and reviewers.

Besides language translations, the platform owner or providers have to comply with local regulations and keep in mind the cultural sensitivity. For example, for certain regions tailoring the content with strict rules against nudity and profanity not only means editing video but also the images, thumbnails, audio, and subtitles. With the tight security measures surrounding the premium content, the process becomes even more complicated.

Why localize?

An overabundance of OTT offerings has made the user very critical of the value and the experience on offer. A service has to offer excellent value and quality to be able to gain user loyalty. Good content library, although remains the number one factor in attracting customers, the personalization of the experience which involves availability of localized content and recommendations of similar international localized content is slowly becoming the next best favorite of the modern cord cutters.

With an increasing number of regulations surrounding regional content and its promotion, it also becomes inevitable and incumbent on OTT providers to have more and more of local content in place. Keeping in mind all the investment going in to produce original content, only makes sense for businesses to localize these video contents for other markets as well.

In the end it’s a no brainer why everyone wants a piece of the proverbial pie, afterall OTT is growing at a faster pace than ever, and the outlook of the revenue of USD 245bn by 2028 with a CAGR of 17.4% makes it sweeter than ever.

How to localize?

A content management solution that provides a customized and automated approach towards localization workflows is the best way to proceed with the process.


The various requirements from a backend for localizations are:

  • Automated Workflows
  • End-to-end automated workflows for content and localization management, to manage a massive number of assets. This includes metadata management, content targeting and much more.

  • Content access and restrictions
  • The regulatory and compliance challenges faced by providers in a global rollout of the services. A content management solution must allow the creation of strict rules to adhere to such policies, geography, devices, and age while also considering the global availability of the modern traveling viewer’s data.

  • Multi-user and Multiple instances
  • The content management and localization process involves the inclusion of a variety of expert roles, ranging from engineers to editors to translators and reviewers. The solution must provide each user, whether internal or third-party, with a separate dashboard, customized for specific roles and data access policies.

  • Integrations
  • The advent of multiple machine learning tools that automatically generate enriched metadata automatically translated to numerous languages is a much-needed boon for the providers, and hence, the possibility of integration of these services along with further extensibility should be an essential requirement for a solution as well.

Axinom understands content localization like no other. Working with customers like Zee5, we have created unique tailored workflows that ease the process of localization. Axinom CMS provides access to all localization parameters with few clicks, along with custom interfaces and a strictly regulated access to language editors and reviewers, it’s the perfect companion for a localized global OTT platform.

With Axinom CMS you can add localize your content to suit your audience, know more using the chat below!