Would you pay more attention to an advertisement if it was the only one you had to watch before a show?
FOX seems to think so, and is planning on testing this hypothesis on Hulu, with new ad format ‘TrueX.’
President of Advertising at FOX Joe Marchese thinks traditional ads are broken and it’s time for a fix in the streaming video market. ‘The whole purpose is to get out this heavy ad-loading environment, where consumers are ad blocking and consumers are ad avoiding. We need to start fixing the interruptive ad model (source).”
Hulu has never been one to shy away from testing different ad formats, often times in an effort to encourage more engagement as a positive signal that people are paying attention. After all, how effective is an advertisement if we’re muting them, heading to the kitchen to grab a snack, etc while they’re running.
A recent survey of ours concluded, however, that most people would at least like the option to pay more for a service as opposed to dealing with advertisements. With this in mind, Hulu recently released an ad-free option for their services. Hulu CEO Mike Hopkins argues however, that an ad-free option of their service is almost more just to remove the negative brand perception, as their analysis suspects most people wont, in fact, pay more to remove ads.
It’s impossibly to argue that ad-free will lead all video streamers to the promised land. The reality of the situation is that ads subsidize the cost of creating most content, and are certainly a necessary part of the entertainment ecosystem. However it is important to modernize these efforts as to help move past such negativity associated with traditional advertisements. No easy task, but it’s great to see new ideas being tested.