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How Do Hulu and CBS Advertisers Compare?

How Do Hulu and CBS Advertisers Compare?

Streaming services are shifting to stand out and advertisers have to pay attention. They know what content their audiences love—but they also need to know where the content lives. And that can be complicated.

ViacomCBS is the latest to sign agreements with Hulu and announce future ideas for differentiating themselves. As they distribute their content across different channels, how will this affect the overlap between their advertisers and Hulu’s?

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ViacomCBS Rumored to Explore New Options

ViacomCBS plans to bundle streaming services they already own to entice more subscribers. Though details weren’t outlined, consumers may be able to pay for some combination of BET, Pluto TV, Showtime, and Paramount+.

With this wide range of programming, ViacomCBS offers something for everyone. 

“We have done some bundles in the past, and we will be bringing more bundles to market, so that people can buy a number of our services and use them all together,” explained President of streaming Tom Ryan. “We’re going to integrate the services, so that you can consume them all in one place.”

Wider programming combinations may attract more viewers, but audiences won’t be limited to viewing this content across ViacomCBS distribution channels.

Some of the network’s most popular channels were recently added to HuluLive, but not on the standard AVOD model. The multi-year distribution deal between Hulu and ViacomCBS was announced in January, but the details are not clearly laid out for the public.

Because consumers can watch overlapping content between ViacomCBS-owned platforms (including traditional broadcasting) and Hulu, we were curious how advertisers were engaging those audiences. Do the same brands advertise on both platforms, or do they favor one over the other?

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In January, 16% of CBS’ advertisers also placed ads on Hulu. In February, this increased to 20%. This may be a sign that Hulu is pursuing their advertisers.

Note: This looks at the CBS broadcast network only, and does not include other CBS properties (i.e. BET, Comedy Central, Nickelodeon).

When digging deeper, we found that pharma has the most overlap, making up 8% of advertisers on Hulu, and nearly 15% of CBS advertisers.

The interesting thing is that there is no ad overlap within licensed programming between Hulu and CBS.

This may be because any shows that are currently airing on CBS or Paramount Plus are not in the current season on Hulu. Advertisers may be more incentivized to advertise with CBS due to the more up-to-date content.

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