What is Hulu?

Hulu is an online video service that offers commercial-supported videos including hit TV shows, movies and clips from many networks like NBC, Fox, and ABC. Hulu has made their material available to to multiple sites including Fancast. Hulu’s extensive and ever-growing selection of premium content, along with their powerful distribution network including broad reach partners, niche communities and ubiquitous embeds, and flexible targeting capabilities make Hulu an indispensable vehicle to reach your audience. (Hulu)

^How to Use Hulu^
Advertising is an essential part of Hulu, used to provide the best experience for their users. Hulu believes that by giving the best viewing experience,the result is a more effective advertising environment. They offer a clutter-free site, that provides the best possible experience, while making sure that the advertisers brand is the main focus. From standard packages to elite and the new ‘Hulu Exclusives’, Hulu offers a wide variety of powerful advertising options that, inevitably, results in what is best for you.(Hulu)


Hulu was founded in March 2007 and is owned by NBC Universal, News Corp.., The Walt Disney Company, Providence Equity Partners and the Hulu team.

Hulu's mission is to "help people find and enjoy the world's premium video content when, where and how they want it. As we pursue this mission, we aspire to create a service that users, advertisers, and content owners unabashedly love." (Hulu)

Hulu became increasingly more popular after a commercial in February 2009 with Alec Baldwin during the Super Bowl XLIII. Super Bowl XLIII Commercial. (Below is the commercial)


Some of the benefits to advertising with Hulu is the environment that they have created. is very innovative yet simple, and elegant. They have made their website very user friendly by focusing solely on quality experience and they are continuously working towards improved viewing as well as participation and engagement. Since Hulu is a fairly new website, their audience is still growing significantly. Advertisers’ have seen this as a way to reach their consumers whenever they are online.

Advertisers’ also benefit from Hulu because they offer three types of advertising formats:

1. Standard Ad Formats
Consists of 15 or 30 second video spots that run before, after and during an ad break, companion banners that accompany video spots with a link directly to the advertiser’s site, overlay brand bars that appear over content at the bottom of the video and include a logo and targeted message, and gives users the ability to click to opt in and play the full video ad. They also consist of Overlay Logo Bugs which are are simple brand logos that appear in the bottom right corner of the screen. Users have the option of clicking on the logo to watch the full video ad.

2. Premium Ad Formats
Include premium branded slates which are presented in-stream before the content begins. They feature the brand logo, a voiceover and the standard ‘Brought to you by…” messaging, and a short video clip that reinforces their message. This format also includes branded canvases or premium interactive canvases which are a unique way to skin the area around the player.

3.Hulu Exclusives
Hulu has developed their own advertising format which includes ad selectors. Ad selectors allow the user to control their entire ad experience by giving them the ability to choose a category from 2 or 3 options, and video ads from their selection play throughout the video. Hulu has also created branded entertainment selectors which give the users the option of choosing one long-form video commercial with no further interruptions or ad breaks throughout the remainder of the episode or movie.


Advertising on Hulu is currently sold on a CPM (Cost per Thousand) basis which is calculated by dividing the cost by the audience delivery and then multiplying the quotient by 1,000. The ad rates at Hulu are in the $25 to $30 CPM range which is higher than network television, but Hulu has the ability to guarantee placement in individual shows which is why they are able to have higher pricing.


Since Hulu offers a wide variety of videos, from clips to full episodes and movies, advertisements are scheduled based on the particular length of each video. When users are watching short-form videos like clips of a show or movie, Hulu schedules overlay ads and companion display banners. Since these videos are substantially shorter than a full episode or movie, Hulu aims to increase consumer experience by limiting the number of advertisements.

When users are watching long-form videos, like full episodes or movies, advertisements are shown during what a traditional commercial break on broadcast television would be. Although the advertisements are similar to commercials, they are approximately 25% shorter than what the viewer would see on television.

Hulu truly believes that less is more. “We believe, and research has proven, that fewer ads can lead to greater message recall which ultimately enables a better user experience on Hulu.” (Hulu)

Advertisers using Hulu

Hulu has partnered with over 500 established advertisers including brand names such asadvertisers.png:

1. O'Leary, Noreen. (2009). Searching For life on Hulu. MediaWeek, Vol. 19 Issue 21, 5-7
Hulu. (2009). Retrieved October 20, 2009, from Hulu website:

3. Kilar, Jason. (2009). Like Minds.
4. Vella, Matt. (2008, April 28). How Hulu's Design Gets It Right