According to a new advertising study from MediaRadar, Amazon Prime Video has surpassed Netflix as the top OTT spender in 2019, with Netflix coming in second and Hulu remaining in third place.
The study found Netflix to be the biggest spender in the first half of 2018 (first and second quarters), followed by Amazon Prime Video in second place and Hulu in third. During the same time period of 2019 (Q1 and Q2), the study revealed that Amazon Prime Video had surpassed Netflix for first place, with Hulu remaining in third.
“While spend amongst these top OTT providers can be volatile based around content releases, it is telling to see Amazon continue to invest in the platform and its original content, further enticing viewers to stay in, or even enter, the ‘Amazon Ecosystem,’” said Todd Krizelman, CEO of MediaRadar.
Amazon Prime Video launched 13 new campaigns for its original content in the first half of 2019. Its largest campaign by spend was for its original show Hanna, which included a 60-second spot during the 2019 Super Bowl. Amazon Prime Video was the only OTT platform out of the three to increase TV spend year-over-year (up 28 percent), with both Hulu and Netflix cutting back by more than 40 percent. The platform also increased digital spend by over 300 percent year-over-year.
“Our recent OTT analysis showed that Amazon Prime Video has shifted to become the biggest OTT spender in the first half of 2019,” said Krizelman. “It also highlighted that Amazon Prime Video’s jump to number one can in part be attributed to the heavy promotion of its new original content, including increased investment in native advertising. In fact, its native advertising spend rose 5X, year-over-year, when comparing 2018 and 2019.”
Netflix launched 67 new campaigns for its original content in the first half of 2019. The largest of those campaigns was for its original series Our Planet, which saw a 30-second spot during the 2019 Super Bowl. When comparing Q1 and Q2 2018 against Q1 and Q2 2019, the analysis showed that Netflix reduced spend across TV, print and digital, fairly evenly. It also found Netflix to be the only OTT platform to decrease digital spend year-over-year .
“Although Netflix’s spend on traditional advertising is down year-over-year,” said Krizelman, “Netflix’s latest shareholder letter showed that its spend for overall marketing remains fairly steady, as it experiments with new promotional initiatives, such as a Stranger Things game (mobile and console), and brand partnerships with companies such as Coke, Nike, Burger King, Baskin Robbins and Fortnite.”
Meanwhile, Hulu launched six new campaigns for its original content in the first half of 2019, with its largest campaign by spend during that time period being for The Act. When comparing the first half of 2018 to the first half of 2019, Hulu had the largest decrease in TV spend out of the three OTT platforms (61 percent), but was also the only platform to increase print spend (57 percent). “Last year Hulu heavily promoted both Castle Rock and The Looming Tower on TV,” Krizelman said. “But, with The Looming Tower over and Castle Rock season two not yet ready, neither program received promotion in Q2 of 2019.”