SAN JUAN, PR —Asaf Davidov, Hulu’s Director of Ad Sales Research, has seen the company grow rapidly over the past five years. When he joined in 2015, they had just 10 million subscribers, a number that’s now grown to 30 million subscribers and 72 million ad-supported uniques.
In terms of upcoming opportunities, Davidov spoke of how Hulu is attempting to make their data set stronger by working with their measurement partners to try and identify all members of a household (rather than just the account holder), so that Hulu can better target them with “lookalike segments or dayparting or devices to really make sure that we’re reaching the right person.”
Hulu is also launching a proprietary pixel that will live on advertiser websites and allow them to gather data on viewers who visit a those website after seeing an ad, but do not immediately convert.
So while an advertiser’s CRM data only tracks visitors who went on to make a purchase, Hulu’s pixel will track viewers who visited the site but did not make a purchase. This will in turn provide more information to the advertiser about the effectiveness of the advertisement and perhaps cue them in to changes and adjustments they can make to their website or product in order to drive higher conversion rates.
Hulu’s push to change the traditional ad experience has set them apart from other programmers and will continue to do so. Ad chief Peter Naylor wants 50% of their 2022 ad revenue to be driven by non-traditional formats and so new formats like pause ads will remain at the forefront of Hulu’s offering.
“The attempt is to make it non-disruptive for users,” Davidov says. “To make it a little more native to their viewing behavior.”
Pausing is definitely one of those behaviors—in just one month Hulu saw 1.2 billion pauses. Viewers, Davidov notes seem to respond quite positively
“Users love it. It’s non-intrusive, it’s very native to their viewing experience.”
Contextual advertising for binge viewers is another new non-traditional play from Hulu, Davidov explained. Hulu will track user’s viewing habits, and when they notice that a viewer has been binge watching a show for a few hours, Hulu may show them an ad for for a snack food or even for a food delivery service like Seamless..just in case all that bingeing made them a little hungry.
“The ad will be something that talks to them and mirrors what their viewing behavior actually is,” Davidov says.
This video was produced at the Beet Retreat San Juan 2020 sponsored by 605, DISH Media, NBCU, Roundel & Tubi. For more videos from the series, please visit this landing page.