Hulu to introduce pause advertising 'experience' in Q2 2019

Cal Jeffrey

Posts: 2,858   +744
Staff member

During the beta, it will be displaying Coca-Cola and Charmin toilet paper promos. What could be more relevant during a pause break than that? The beta is currently underway, and the streaming service expects to have complete implementation by Q2 2019.

The ads will not appear on every program, but rather on “select content within the Hulu streaming library.” The press release had no further information about what content that would be, but Marvel’s Runaways was shown as an example (below).

We reported last month that Hulu and AT&T were planning to implement pause advertising this year, but there was no definite timeline. The timing interestingly falls on the heels of a study conducted by AudienceProject that showed that over 50 percent of Netflix subscribers that they surveyed said they would cancel their subscriptions if the service started showing ads.

Netflix had toyed with showing promos for other relevant content between episodes of popular TV shows last summer. That experiment was not well received at all, and the company has since not mentioned it again.

The Hulu ads are much less intrusive and do not interrupt your viewing unless you initiate the interruption by hitting pause. Plus, the promos vanish as soon as you start up the video again. The ads will also only appear on the $5.99 basic tier, which already has commercials anyway.

As long as ads don’t start creeping into the higher tiers, Hulu should do alright with this.

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Posts: 5,720   +3,928
I will be OK with this as long as it stays static. If it goes beyond that, I may drop my subscription.

Although this report is over 20-years old at this time, I think it is still relevant in suggesting that TV advertising has little effect on sales.
The paper can be freely downloaded from the link.

If, however, advertisers want to pay people for showing their ads even though they are highly likely to have no influence on sales, I am OK with that. I always turn the volume down on ads anyway - I use the volume control in Hulu's app. I wonder if they track this?


Posts: 2,669   +2,008
If paused ads are 100% STATIC, no audio, I wouldn't have a problem, but, eventually they will be in your face ads, just like 100% of websites and what not.


Posts: 39   +29
You pause a show for a reason, bathroom breaks, food breaks, check on the kids etc. So you won't even be looking at the ad.

Wonder who thought of this dumb idea.