Hulu's Going After Traditional Network Dollars Is A Good Thing

Hulu says it wants big TV advertising dollars -- like those its owners get. Shouldn’t surprise anyone -- but Hulu is owned by Walt Disney, Comcast Corp., 21st Century Fox and Time Warner, all of whom own  big ad-supported TV networks, both broadcast and cable. So Hulu’s statement may seem like a conflict waiting to happen -- perhaps cannibalization of existing traditional national TV business.

Yet this is exactly what Hulu should be doing: acting like its own entity.  

Major media companies like Hulu’s owners have always had plenty of different options to offer marketers -- including broadcast/cable networks, national syndication TV, national spot and local TV stations, and possibly local cable advertising time, as well as other digital and legacy media opportunities.

But senior media executives aren’t worried. They know shifts in advertising dollars are part of the score. Overall improved results are what matters.



Media companies can go even further. Some say so-called competing “in-house” media opportunities sold to marketers can spur opportunity and innovation.

Right now, Hulu’s looking to get national TV advertising dollars intended to go to traditional TV budgets may not be that much different than a marketer shifting some national TV dollars to syndicated TV shows, from, say, a broadcast or cable TV network. Is there a concern about that?

More importantly, the likes of each platform still have some key positive and negative attributes -- and are priced accordingly.

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