Netflix Ad-Supported Plan to Debut Nov. 3 for $6.99 per Month

Netflix is introducing its ad-supported tier in the U.S. starting November 3, at a monthly subscription fee of $6.99. The Netflix economy service will reportedly average between four and five minutes of ads per hour, with individual spots running 15 seconds to 30 seconds. Certain TV shows and movies won’t be included on the ad-supported tier due to contract restrictions. To provide advertisers with viewership measurement, Netflix will begin using Nielsen’s digital measurement service in the U.S. starting in 2023. This will mark the streaming giant’s first third-party ratings.

Netflix pricing beats the commercial plans of Disney+ and Hulu, at $7.99 per month each, as well as HBO Max, which charges $10.99 per month. Netflix, which is looking for ways to expand its audience and generate new revenue in the wake of market headwinds, reportedly plans to roll out the ad-supported tier in other countries, too. Over the summer, Netflix named Microsoft its worldwide advertising partner, specifying the Redmond-based company will exclusively book Netflix ads.

“The streaming company will have hundreds of advertisers at launch and has nearly sold out its inventory, the company said in a media conference call,” CNBC wrote last week, noting that “initially there will be no advertising within kids programming and new movies,” while “older films may have mid-roll advertising.”

Netflix, which will announce Q3 revenues Tuesday evening, lost subscribers in Q1 and Q2, “and expects to add just 1 million customers in the third quarter,” writes CNBC, which says the company’s 221 million subscribers globally “makes it the largest worldwide streaming service” nonetheless.

Jon Watts, managing director of the Coalition for Innovative Media Measurement, told CNBC that the announcements mean Netflix is serious about its new ad-subsidized tier, and is embracing a wider ecosystem. “It also raises interesting questions about the future evolution of the market, with TV and streaming converging, and learning to co-exist,” Watts told CNBC, which calls Nielsen “the go-to ratings agency for broadcast and cable-TV shows” at a time when it, too, faces increased competition.

VideoWeek cites Los Angeles-based VideoAmp, as well as Innovid and among its newer rivals. While much was made of Nielsen “proactively” withdrawing its Media Rating Council accreditation last year, it wasn’t alone. The MRC had “no accredited services heading into the Upfronts,” Radio+Television Business Report writes.

“Amazon Prime recently partnered with Nielsen to track its audience for ‘Thursday Night Football,’ which began airing on the service in September,” CNBC reports, adding “Amazon is the first streaming service to have the exclusive rights to a package of NFL games, which will last through 2033.”

Netflix has secured Broadcasters Audience Research Board or BARB, to as its ratings agency in the UK, according to TechCrunch.

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