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By Zhao Lei
Original title: live broadcasting on the show became a “front wave”
In the first half of 2020, live broadcasting with goods has become a hot topic in the world of Chinese Internet. Li Jiaqi and Weiya are out of the circle with high profile. Public opinion even vaguely equates “live broadcasting” with “bringing goods”. Many people think that watching live broadcast is to buy things. In contrast, as the ancestor of live broadcasting, live show broadcasting is more low-key than before and rarely appears in public view.
As a matter of fact, it mainly depends on the female anchor singing and dancing to make money. She is used to the live broadcasting platform of “making a big fortune with dull voice”. Now it is not as comfortable as before. In the first quarter of 2020, the revenue and profit of Momo, a live social platform, have both declined. The income and profit of YY, a subsidiary of huanju group, are also in negative growth. The Yingke of “Hong Kong stock direct broadcast first share” is hovering at the edge of loss.
Tang Yan, the CEO of Momo, attributed the decline to the impact of the epidemic: “the negative impact of macro-economy, especially the operating conditions of private entrepreneurs, on head consumption will continue for some time.” To put it simply, those rich landlords are not well managed themselves. How can they still have the money to reward female anchors?
The epidemic situation is one aspect, but the decline of the show live platform is not a day or two.
In the first half of 2019, Yingke has already suffered losses. Although it has been making profits in the previous 13 quarters, its revenue and profit have been falling year by year, and the share price has been falling continuously; Momo is experiencing weak growth, with a monthly active user card of 110 million, and paying users can’t go up, which has affected the growth of revenue. Although YY has been relatively stable, the business focus of huanju group has been overseas, and YY has become a reality Golden COW, which supplies blood for new business, has given up the competition in the domestic market in disguise; the pepper live broadcast once favored by Zhou Hongyi has already lost its strong background of 360 and almost disappeared.
“The traditional show live platform has encountered the growth ceiling, and seeking transformation is basically the problem of the mode itself.” Zhang Mo, an Internet analyst, told fuel finance. In the live broadcast of the show, people are the content itself, and the live broadcast tool attribute is the strongest. It is very difficult for the platform to retain people. Only the head users with high consumption will have stronger stickiness. However, the scale of this part of the crowd is limited. As a result, the overall user scale of the platform can not go up, only the payment level of the old users can be raised, which has an obvious ceiling.
Digging deep into human nature is what the show live platform is best at. In this Vanity Fair, there will never be a shortage of young and beautiful young girls, and there will be no shortage of local tyrants. But the story of live show broadcasting will be over.
The boss has no money to reward the female anchor
Sun Yipeng is in charge of anchor recruitment in a live broadcasting association. In recent months, he has obviously felt that the flow rate of anchors has increased a lot, and his task is becoming more and more heavy. The reason for the high turnover rate is that during the epidemic period, many people want to spend their time at home to earn some money, so there are many more applicants than usual. On the other hand, it is not easy to live on the show. Some experienced anchors have left, so it is more difficult for new people to stick to it.
An anchor told him that her average income has dropped by 30% in recent months, and the number one who gave her more than 200000 awards last year has disappeared for a long time, and her record has not been broken. “The economic situation is not good. There are fewer people willing to add money, but there are many more anchors. The competition is more intense.” Sun Yipeng said.
The change in the number of anchors is just sun Yipeng’s intuitive feeling, but the decline in income is indeed the status quo of the whole industry. From the financial data of several major show live broadcasting platforms, it can be seen that, unlike online formats that generally benefit from games, short videos, news information, etc., show live broadcasting suffered heavy losses during the epidemic.
According to Momo’s financial report, Q1’s revenue in 2020 will decrease by 3.5% year-on-year and 23% month on month. This is mainly affected by the decline of live broadcast business income. The revenue of this part is only 2.332 billion, with a year-on-year decrease of 13% and a month on month decrease of 31%. As a result, the adjusted net profit of momoq1 is only 735 million, with a year-on-year decrease of 19% and a month on month decrease of 43%.
YY’s situation is similar, Q1 revenue of 2.63 billion, a year-on-year decrease of 4%, a month on month decline of 21%, adjusted net profit decreased by 24% and 37% respectively, to 486 million.
Of course, the so-called damage is also compared with before. The revenue and profits of Momo and YY are still envied by others in the live broadcasting industry, especially compared with the game live broadcasting platforms with poor profitability such as tiger teeth and Betta. The gross profit margin of momoq1 is as high as 48%, which has decreased compared with previous quarters. However, the gross profit margin of Betta, which has a bright performance in Q1, is still only 21%.
“In terms of income and profit, Momo and YY are still living happily, but investors are more concerned about their future. Whether this negative growth is affected by the epidemic or the inflection point driven by the business is the key to the problem.” Zhang Mo said.
Visual sources in China
From the stock price performance point of view, the trend of the three old show live broadcasting companies has appeared differentiation.
Since January this year, Momo’s share price has been falling from its peak of $40. On June 29, its closing price was only $17.5, and its market value has evaporated by more than half. Joy gathering group, the parent company of YY, performed strongly, rising from US $60 to US $90. Zhang Mo believes that this may be because Momo has taken root in China and is more dependent on live broadcasting. Huanju group’s overseas business growth is bright, and short video and live broadcasting are driven by two wheels, and the transformation is more smooth.
Momo also has a stranger social card to play. After the acquisition and exploration, Momo is no longer a strong enemy, and is firmly at the top of the stranger social circle. At present, the value-added service income mainly composed of making friends, virtual gifts and members also maintains a good growth rate, accounting for 32% of Momo’s total revenue. In contrast, the live broadcast revenue accounts for 99% of the film’s customers, and their life is really hard.
In just half a year, Yingke, which has been listed in Hong Kong stock market, has carried out 58 share buybacks. However, the successive buybacks have failed to stop the downward share price. Compared with the record high in February this year, Yingke’s market value has shrunk by one-third to HK $2.2 billion.
A person in the live broadcasting industry told ran finance and economics that Yingke live broadcast had the banner of “the first share of Mobile Live Broadcasting” in those years, which was prior to tiger teeth and Betta Fish. However, its volume has always been small. After the industry has entered the shuffle stage, its ability to resist risks is very poor. “Coupled with the impact of the epidemic, it will be more difficult to transform, and it is likely to collapse.”.
“Live broadcasting on the show is a business of human life. People gather money and go where people go, so the head gathering effect will be stronger. The number of users of small platforms is small. The guild and the anchor have left for the big platform, forming a vicious circle, so it is difficult to do it again.” He said.
Compared with the booming live broadcast with goods, has the “old” mode of live show live really come to an end?
Once lay to earn, now worry
In 2016, the tide of mobile Internet is surging. With the speed-up and cost reduction of 4G network, it is only used for live broadcasting of “online KTV” in the era of PC Internet. It also brings new stories, that is, nationwide live broadcasting, with rich and diverse types. Eating, sleeping, singing, dancing and playing games, live broadcasting is the life itself.
The imagination is beautiful, but the reality is cruel. The thousand broadcast war, the capital race, the scale effect, and the Internet story of a dominant family are repeatedly told. The people who kill red eyes haven’t solved two essential problems. One is why the anchor should live? Second, why do users want to watch live broadcast?
The first problem leads to the return of “national live broadcasting” to the old way of live broadcasting on the show, with the exception of the game live broadcast with continuous capital transfusion; the second problem leads to the fact that as a serious entertainment behavior, the user scale of live broadcasting has been unable to go up, far lower than that of long video and later short video.
“In fact, the direction of national live broadcasting is right, but a few years ago, it is not the right time and method to explore the old way. Now, this trend may be more obvious. Live broadcasting is used in all walks of life. But if you are a pure tool and platform, I will provide you with a live broadcasting room. It doesn’t matter what you broadcast. If someone gives you a reward, I will draw a percentage. Such a company is very difficult to sustain. ” An entertainment investor said to fuel finance.
During the thousand broadcast war, most of the platforms that focused on “live broadcasting for all” died. The problem is that they are pipeline, no threshold, unable to retain the anchor and users, and it is difficult to cash in. Today, they survive and live well. Most of these new players only use live broadcasting as a tool to export platform content and traffic.
YY, Momo and Yingke now take the same route, all of which are “live + social”, but they have different preferences on products. Strangers have more social elements, which are based on their geographical location, live socializing, giving gifts and chatting with beauties; YY is like going to KTV, and whoever spends more is the eldest brother. The guild closely controls the anchor and fights with each other, which is full of the atmosphere of the river and lake. There are all Yingke visitors, but they are not thorough enough, and they are more like strangers on the whole.
Visual sources in China
Tiktok and tiktok live broadcast, YY live broadcast and Taobao live broadcast are almost completely different. To see the live Taobao people is to buy cheap products, the people who love the live music is to support their favorite network red or star, YY spend money on the people, no matter with the guild, anchor, housing management, other brother on the list of countless social contacts.
From the perspective of business model, show live has a natural high gross margin. People are not only the content itself, but also the object of operation. The live broadcasting association gathers the anchors to teach these beautiful girls how to create “interesting souls”, how to stir up the audience’s emotions with their clever tongue, and how to create and skillfully resolve the disputes between big brothers, which not only improves the platform’s income, but also greatly reduces the operation cost of the platform.
In contrast, “the live game is very miserable. On the one hand, there are few people who play well in the game. Secondly, there are few people who reward you for playing well. Thirdly, the price of the head anchor is high and difficult to control. That’s why there is always a flow of betta but it doesn’t make money.” One person close to the betta said.
From the very beginning, live games and live shows have gone backwards. Tiger teeth and fighting fish have been suffering for a long time. Now Tencent is supporting them. On the contrary, they are getting more and more smooth. However, they are used to the good days of lying down and making money. They have always been self-sufficient, but now they have to worry.
What are the difficulties in the transformation of live TV show?
In addition to the short-term epidemic factors, there are two problems in front of the show live broadcasting platform: one is growth, the other is competition.
We look at the growth of Momo, YY and Yingke from three dimensions. From the perspective of marketing and audience, the growth rate of Momo and YY’s live broadcasting business is not high. Momo is slightly better, maintained at about 15%, while YY is around 10%, but the growth rate is declining, and both Q1 have negative growth. Yingke publishes its performance once every half a year. Negative growth appears in the second half of 2018 and the first half of 2019, and it rises to 13% in the second half of 2019. In terms of the whole year span, the revenue has dropped for three consecutive years.
Drawing / fuel Finance
According to the monthly active users, Momo has been trading at 110 million for a long time, YY has been around 40 million before, but Q1 has increased significantly, which indicates that the number of people watching live broadcast has increased. However, from the perspective of paid users, both YY and Momo fluctuate up and down without obvious growth. Momo is about 9 million and YY is about 4.2 million. The scale of Yingke users is smaller, with only 29.8 million Mau by the end of 2019.
Drawing / fuel Finance
It has been a recognized fact in the show live broadcasting industry that the user scale of a single platform has an obvious ceiling, which makes it difficult to achieve scale aggregation. There are countless small platforms that separate users. The business model makes it not difficult for these small platforms to survive. Sun Yipeng disclosed that some small platforms give more shares to the guild and the anchor, but make more money.
Kwai tiktok has a low threshold for live broadcast, and the competition between the anchor and the association is fierce. For the anchor and guild with little influence on the platform, the platform with higher traffic flow may be better choice, such as what the new fast hand and the jitter are.
YY Kwai Kwai Kwai Kwai has suffered a lot in this matter. At the very earliest time, the fast hand and YY were cooperative relations. YY as the cash flow channel, the fast hand was the low flow pool, and later the fast hand made the live broadcast. YY some unknown anchors quickly fought the attack, such as the quick relief, such as the great fortune of the red tide, the large number of YY anchor runaway Kwai TSE, also hit the YY live broadcast ecology.
Nouveau riche Kwai Kwai, who is not a YY user, can be charged with money, but the user base is large, and everyone is less charged. The whole is a large scale of water flow. Some small and medium anchors without big brother support are also more likely to earn money. What you are building quickly is another relationship. Sun Yipeng said.
Tiktok is also ktiktok. By the end of 2019, the two live broadcast revenue and user scale of the two groups of voice and fast hands had far exceeded that of Kwai street and YY. The Kwai tiktok only has 51 million live live broadcast live players, and the total revenue of live broadcast is about 300-350 billion. The monthly flow of Kwai live has not been much better than that of the fast runner.
According to the above investors, there is only one internal reason for the growth and competition of show live broadcasting. “From the perspective of social relations, it is easy to exclude new players. If you enter a live broadcasting room, unless you are a subvert and use money to smash a position, you don’t have a sense of belonging. Ordinary users have poor stickiness, but the loyalty of head users will be relatively high.”
The higher the dependence on specific user groups, the more difficult the transformation is. For the three, Momo has greater potential, and its stranger social attribute is still very strong. The number of monthly live users is the largest. A large part of users are going to make friends. The proportion of value-added service income based on social needs is very high, and more ways to play can be explored.
It’s a little difficult for YY and Yingke. Huanju group has focused on overseas, and will not invest more in YY in the future. It skillfully avoids the contradiction. The group’s overall users, revenue and share price have maintained a good growth trend, which can be said to have found the second growth curve.
First, Yingke has no basic social contact with strangers; second, it has no tendency to go out to sea. It has always stressed the layout of “Pan entertainment + social networking”. First, it purchased Jimu at a high price, and then continuously launched new entertainment products, but none of them showed any brilliant performance.
Is it reliable for the anchor to bring goods?
There is no doubt that the traditional live show mode can not tell a new story, but the long-term profitability and sufficient cash reserves have left room for strategic leaping and shifting of the show live platform.
“Although the expectations are not good, these companies will not have any problems in the short term, and can maintain profits for a long time. The live broadcast business can continue to supply blood for new businesses.” Zhang Mo said.
Sun Yipeng also approved the live show. “This mode has lasted for more than ten years. There must be a way. Which man doesn’t like beautiful women? When ordinary people go to KTV, the landlords like to be worshipped in the live room. They like the female anchor to call themselves big brother in front of tens of thousands of people. This can’t change. ”
Wang Sheng, the person in charge of e-commerce at xinhuanet.com, also believes that the private owners of small and medium-sized enterprises are the main force to reward the live show. After all, it will return to normal after the epidemic. “This is a business with good cash flow, and it is quite stable. After all, China has a large population base, and the show live broadcast takes advantage of some human weaknesses, so it must exist for a long time, and will not collapse.”
Visual sources in China
In terms of live broadcasting business, can the live broadcasting of the show field catch up with the Dafengkou in 2020?
In fact, the three show live platforms have all tried.
YY has set up a live channel with goods called live purchase in the app. The category is very vertical: only jewelry items such as bracelets, jade and Cultural Games are available. The list of live broadcast rooms is displayed on the cover, which is all the goods being sold. These live broadcast content is not directly provided by YY, but from its jewelry e-commerce platform “one piece”, and the anchor inside is from the settled merchants.
On the Q1 financial report conference call, Momo CEO Tang Yan said: “the company has indeed seen such an upward trend of the combination of e-commerce and webcast, and is actively studying and exploring some potential opportunities. But at this point, no more in-depth information will be publicly shared at this point. ”
According to the report of Tech planet, Momo group has set up a live e-commerce department with a team size of about 50 people, and plans to vigorously develop live broadcasting with goods this year. Momo BD staff are now looking for anchors with a certain fan base and expertise, and can help the anchor and the current organization to compensate for the liquidated damages of the switching company. But the signed anchor with goods, in fact, is not in Momo live broadcast, but in Taobao live broadcast to sell goods.
Yingke has set up a “Hi buy” live delivery zone, and set a Gmv guidance task for the anchor, which is divided into eight levels from 1000 yuan to 100000 yuan. Among the goods sold, non-standard commodities such as jewelry and jade account for a certain proportion. High unit price can ensure sufficient profit space.
However, Wang Sheng is not optimistic about such a transformation. “Most of the users of the show are men, and the online consumption ability of the male group is relatively weak, and the female anchor has no brand effect like Luo Yonghao, which can attract male fans to buy some products with high customer price.”.
Speaking of bringing goods, sun Yipeng thought of the scene that the female anchor coaxed the landlords into buying thousands of goods each, which was obviously difficult to achieve.
As can be imagined, the Kwai tiktok is a large platform for hundreds of millions of months and days. But if we let 30 million months live visitors to live and take delivery, the effect can be imagined. The user scale is the problem of the customer group attribute. On the other hand, the scale of the customers is Taobao. “All aspects do not have the conditions for live delivery, including supply chain, sales system, logistics and service system. In essence, these are two systems,” Zhang Mo said.
On the whole, the consumption logic of live show and live with goods is completely different. At present, there is no good combination mode. If you rush to buy things, live show broadcast is not a good choice.
Momo, YY can continue to do human business, but for a listed company, it still needs a new story.
*The title is from visual China. At the request of the interviewee, Zhang Mo changed his name.
(statement: This article only represents the author’s point of view, not Sina’s position.)