nScreenMedia OTT multiscreen media analysis

CandW discuss the state of ad-supported online video

VideoNuze nScreenMedia podcast

At the VideoNuze Ad Summit in New York, the mood was upbeat. Hulu talked data and new ad formats. Group Nine is frustrated by fragmentation. Ellation is optimistic about vertical video. And everyone is happy about the rapid expansion of AVOD online.

At the VideoNuze Ad Summit in New York, the mood was upbeat. Though considerable challenges in data analysis, monetization, and measurement remain, the future looks bright for ad-supported video online.

Chapter 1: The Hulu ad summit keynote (1:15)

Peter Naylor, SVP of Ad Sales at Hulu, sat down with Will to discuss his company’s view of the ad-supported video economy. Mr. Naylor reflected on the progress of Hulu over its 11-year history. He also addressed the service’s “viewer-first” philosophy, which touches every part of the experience. He also talked about new approaches to advertising, including the just introduced pause ad and up-coming binge ad.

Chapter 2: New Hulu data (5:40)

In the past, Hulu executives have been vague about exactly how many people watch with and without ads.  Mr. Naylor was specific, giving data that shows two-thirds of viewers watch with ads. He also suggested that the company’s recent price adjustment to increase the number of people signing up with ads is also working.

We discuss the value of ad-free viewing, referencing Hulu, CBS All Access, and Roku data.

A theme for the event was the gap between where the eyeballs are and where the ad revenue is going. Several panelists referenced how difficult it is to get TV ad dollars to shift to digital video platforms.

Chapter 3: A significant conference theme (12:00)

Many panelists felt the lack of uniform measurement systems across video sites is holding the industry back. The theme showed itself in many conversations during the day. For example, on my panel, Bobby LaCivita of Group Nine Media discussed how fragmented the online video market has become. He said it is a struggle to get a clear picture of his business’s performance.

Will linked the issue to the data the industry is using. Some companies are building proprietary measurement tools and working directly with brands.

Chapter 4: The future of OTT will be ad-supported (17:30)

Mark Zagorsky, the CEO of Telaria, presented his vision of the personal video bundle and how he sees ad-supported video as a big part of that future.

Chapter 5: On the viability of free-ad-supported (20:00)

There were a couple of comments during the day questioning the viability of free-ad-supported TV (FAST.) Will and I both believe there is a bright future for FAST services, though the bar has been set very high for the experience and content quality they provide.

Chapter 6: Other quick observations (23:00)

Other panelists provided unique insights into the business, including:

  • Why Netflix will one day provide vertical video features
  • fuboTV’s engagement
  • Overall impression of the Ad Summit.
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