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It is hard to imagine now but once upon a time, in an era of YouTube-less Pakistan, accessing video content online was easier said than done. The ban on the video-sharing websites such as YouTube brought with itself an opportunity for local startups vying for the slice of the web video pie.
Many ventures popped up, each reliant on the use of YouTube API at the back-end to capture the video content crown amongst Pakistani users. But now, with YouTube back in business, all such ventures have witnessed a drastic drop save for a few.
Among the local video platforms, the one that seems unscathed by YouTube’s reemergence is Rava.pk. The video platform currently has almost a 100 new videos uploaded every day, with viewership numbers varying between 100,000 viewers per day on average.
Rava.pk – An Introduction
Rava.pk’s soft launch was on April 25th 2015, as a means of providing entertainment-starved Pakistani netizens with an online video content platform, with its content curated in line with local preferences. This emphasis on localization meant that visitors could be served videos that cater to Pakistanis of all denominations, covering all popular categories such as sports, entertainment, technology, politics, current affairs, business, fashion, culture and more. It could serve as a barometer for viral content customized for Pakistani users.
Viewers can find old or new episode of their favorite serials, current affairs programs and even sports events with a visibly-Pakistani slant. There’s also a section for viewers to watch via live streaming Pakistani television channels including news and sports online. According to Rava.pk’s Business Unit Head Mr. Mashood Paracha, the platform also puts emphasis on the social responsibility aspect of video sharing. Users can submit videos, provided they meet the guidelines of the platform, which are then curated for maximum visibility.
According to Rava.pk’s Business Unit Head Mr. Mashood Paracha, the platform also puts emphasis on the social responsibility aspect of video sharing. Users can submit videos, provided they meet the guidelines of the platform, which are then curated for maximum visibility.
Has YouTube’s Resurgence Affected Rava.pk?
With YouTube restored, what does it mean for Rava.pk’s future plans? According to Mr. Paracha:
“Being at an early stage of our venture, we were still building our audience when YouTube was restored. Also, we cater to the market quite different from YouTube and similar streaming websites. We provide holistic entertainment to the Pakistani internet surfing audience. Therefore, we weren’t affected in the least by YouTube’s restoration, and our numbers continue to grow.”
With increased competition, Rava.pk has to rely on its unique selling proposition/point (USP) as the destination where Pakistani content is dominant. Be it the collection of local drama serials (old and new alike) in its library or the presence of sports, viral, business video content, Rava.pk’s emphasis on offering a personalized user experience ensures that users find any undiscovered albeit related content based on their viewing habits. Furthermore, Rava.pk’s content curation user interface serves up any locally trending content for various categories at a glance. Plus, the availability of
Furthermore, Rava.pk’s content curation user interface serves up any locally trending content for various categories at a glance. Plus, the availability of Pakistani talk shows online, breaking news, and news bulletin on Rava.pk serves the needs of news-hungry local audience.
On Expansion Plans
With a one-year long soft launch, the local video platform is gearing up for its official launch. The event will be marked by a festive launch. To expand its outreach and diversify itself from the competition, the platform plans to roll out a blogging feature that can be used by users and bloggers.
Partnerships with known media outlets is in the offing, as is collaborating with young artists to create branded content. The plan is to have Rava.pk grow into an online video platform that draws in a dedicated viewership day after day, enabling it to draw in revenue that can support all local stakeholders and partners that are part of the Rava.pk brand.