New OTT, Virtual Pay TV Ramp Up TV Spend

With more big sporting events coming up, new OTT and virtual pay TV platforms have kicked up TV marketing spending.

Since the first of the year through April 18, Hulu has spent $60 million on national TV programs -- some 8,441 national TV airings, according to

Hulu spent heavily on the 2018 Winter Olympics, NCAA Basketball Tournament and the Super Bowl. Spending has been high for BET, MTV2, Fox News, Investigation Discovery, FX and Fox News.

Hulu has bought a significant sponsorship on Turner for the NBA playoffs, for its 'Hulu With Live TV' for the first round, conference semifinals and Western Conference Finals coverage. It also has a deal with NBC for the NHL playoffs.

Netflix is not far behind -- $45.7 million over the same period, with 1,384 airings of its commercials. Major attention was given to NBC’s “2018 Winter Olympics” and its “Super Bowl,” with other NFL football, NBA basketball and ESPN’s "SportsCenter" also a focus.



To date, YouTube -- especially for its YouTube TV -- has spent $17.2 million for 632 airings. YouTube TV is also a big buyer of NBA Basketball, ESPN’s “SportsCenter” and Major League Baseball.

YouTube TV will become the first presenting sponsor for the National Basketball Association (NBA) Finals on ABC, adding to its role as the presenting partner for Major League Baseball's (MLB) World Series last October on Fox.

Dish Network’s Sling TV has spent $23.2 million for some 22,666 national airings, with emphasis on Game Show Network, History, A&E Network, truTV and AMC Network.

DirecTV, which includes its DirecTV Now, virtual pay TV service, is at $16.6 million so far -- with big spending on NBC, AMC Network, TNT, CBS and Fox. Programs include NBA and NHL game, CBS “Big Bang Theory,” AMC’ “The Walking Dead” and NBC’s “Law & Order: Special Victims Unit.”

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