Hulu Loses Viewers, But Why?

  • October 24, 2012

Analysts are stumped: Hulu, co-owned by The Walt Disney Co., NBC Universal and News Corp., has seen the number of hours spent viewing video on its site fall sharply in 2012, including a 58% drop to 65 million hours viewed in August, according to Wedbush Securities and comScore data, reports Home Media. Nieslen reported that Hulu — excluding Hulu Plus, the SVOD service with more than 2 million subscribers — saw unique monthly visitors decline to 12 million in August from 19 million last December. True, its ad-supported streaming video business model has also spawned competition.

7 comments about "Hulu Loses Viewers, But Why?".
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  1. William James from Journal Media Group, October 25, 2012 at 9:54 a.m.

    Here is my 2 cents, Hulu changed the way the broadcast shows. Limited time on any TV program to watch before it goes away.
    There is no ad skipping so it is just like TV which most IPTV viewers do not want to pay for. Hulu does not carry some of the most popular shows, Breaking Bad and others outside of CBS, ABC, NBC and Fox. They could use an update to the interface and categories for searching. Once you get above 1000 shows content there should be a way for you to exclude content.

  2. Diane Laura from Nielsen, October 25, 2012 at 10 a.m.

    I'm surprised that anyone is "stumped" about the loss of viewers. Hulu changed the speed at which they post new episodes. This slower speed of delivery, not coincidentally, occurred at the same time they were ramping up Hulu Plus. Want to watch the most recent episode of a favor program on Hulu without paying a fee? You may have to wait weeks. Or, you could use the On Demand function via your cable system, or your DVR, or .... I've been an avid Hulu fan since 2007 but I often choose to watch a program On Demand instead of waiting two weeks (or more) for it to appear on Hulu.

  3. Thomas Siebert from BENEVOLENT PROPAGANDA, October 25, 2012 at 1:04 p.m.

    Good answer, both William and Diane. For me, the big negative was commercials.

    The type of people who would subscribe and watch Hulu are the same type of people who no longer watch commercials -- zip, zip, zip! Hulu's got commercials. That's why I canceled my subscription and I know three other people who did as well. I'm sure we are not a unique quartet.

  4. Mark Walker from aka Media Mark, October 25, 2012 at 1:39 p.m.

    Many people, myself included, think that HULU only has NBC and ABC content- and we can get that on Comcast's VOD replays all season long.

  5. Kris Olszewski from Independent, October 25, 2012 at 3:38 p.m.

    personally I am frustrated with the loss of past seasons. Very minimal content from networks I prefer like BBCa, TLC, HGTV, History. Basically its functioning no different than a digital antenna and a dvr, except you can skip the commercials.

  6. Michael Kaplan from Blue Sky Creative, October 26, 2012 at 5:31 p.m.

    Analysts are pretty stupid. Views are going down because Hulu is giving substandard service to its customers. Between the increasing length and number of commercials, the siphoning of content to HuluPlus, to the utter failure to service the booming tablet market, Hulu is another category leader about to become an also-ran.

  7. James Alexander from New Media Visions, October 26, 2012 at 6:23 p.m.

    Likely the heaviest viewers moved to Hulu Plus. I also noticed that the content offerings have changed. Previous seasons episodes aren't always available and some programming is missing.

    Going to a subscription I am pretty sure would have Hulu expecting a little usage and user count fall-off. Demand-price curve.

    My research shows that the commercials are an issue only for a small vocal minority, not the driving factor here. Not wathing commercials is not a new thing. Before DVRs people were flipping away or leaving the room and multitasking like today. The research supports the best content continuing to have a commercial load to pay the bills.

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