Netflix has told media agencies it now has 600,000 “monthly active users” for its three-month old advertising option -- three times the level it launched with in November, according to executives contacted by Television News Daily.
“All our deals are delivering at or near 100% now,” says one media agency executive. “They are reporting that 99% or more of their deals are currently delivering.”
This follows a report from The Information that Netflix doubled the number of “subscribers” for its ad option. Netflix launched its ad option, “Basic With Ads,” in November for $6.99/month.
Netflix representatives did not respond to inquiries by Television News Daily by press time.
Around the time Netflix launched its ad option, executives touted initial subscriber estimates for the service at around 1.75 million.
In November, an estimated 9% of new Netflix sign-ups in the U.S. went to its Basic with Ads option -- the least popular Netflix plan during the month, according to research by Antenna, a measurement and analytics company.
Netflix currently has a total of 73.4 million subscribers in the U.S. and Canada.
Around a month after its launch in December, Netflix had to give back cash to its initial advertisers due to an inability to find enough ad inventory for the high-demand fourth-quarter period, according to media executives speaking with TND.
This has caused a viewer guarantee shortfall for some marketers.
“Underdelivery really varies by client restrictions, flight weeks, etc.” according to one veteran media agency executive. “But we've seen some clients under by 20%-ish.”
At the time, another executive said: “They are just not making you spend all the money – so not exactly 'cash back'."
Wayne, any way you look at it, 600,000 monthly users is a very tiny number---even if it's a big percentage increase over the initial very, very, tiny user level that Netflix attained with it's ad supported service. Frankly I'm surprised by how slugguish the response has been and I'm going to have to rethink my own estimate that this service will reach 30-40,000 million subs in a few years. Right now, the Netflix ad-supported service is on a par with most very small coverage "long tail" cable channels. It willl be interesting to see if Nielsen can provide stable rating results---even with its new "big data" service ----on a service which probably reaches only 8,000-9,000 viewers per commercial minute---which is probably what is being attained now.