Streaming services are an innovation in and of themselves. Though it may have taken a few years to gain steam, the popularity of the medium skyrocketed and now, everybody is trying to get in on the gravy train. While the industry has stalwarts like Netflix and Hulu, new streaming platforms pop up frequently, featuring content from whatever niche market so they desire.
Even giant conglomerates like Disney have joined the streaming game, preparing their own services with original content to share with the masses. At the end of the day, it essentially comes down to the almighty dollar — and these services do what they can to monetize their product.
In the case of a couple of these platforms — namely, Hulu and AT&T's DirecTV Now — the latest innovation in their product development includes the strategic placements of ads in a place you might not ever suspect. According to Variety, the companies might soon roll out advertising the moment you press the pause button on your remote control.
As Hulu vice president Jeremy Helfand says, it's a natural fit for advertising.
"As binge-viewing happens more and more, it's natural they are going to want to pause," Helfand says. "It's a natural break in the storytelling experience."
Helfand went on to say how the advertising will be best suited for those advertisers who can show off their products in a quick-enough fashion.
"You do not want to deliver a longform advertisement in this situation," reflects Helfand. "I think you have seconds to deliver your message effectively."
He has a point. These platforms are crafting their content around a binge model, where viewers can sit down and watch solid chunks of the programming in one sitting. While ads placed between episodes or even within the show itself would likely be quite the turnoff for consumers.
At least with "pause ads," as Variety is calling them, advertisers would still be able to get their products out in a less invasive way. One AT&T executive tells Variety that it's the ideal situations for marketers.
"We know you're going to capture 100% viewability when they pause and unpause," Matt Van Houten says.
The vice president of product as Xandr Media — the advertising arm of AT&T — went on to say there's a lot of value in the "pause ad" experience.
Would you be a fan of pause ads? Would you rather have ads between episodes or displayed only when you pause? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below.