Netflix Expands Ad Structure With Sponsorships and a ‘Binge’ Product

“Love Is Blind” is the first series to employ new strategy thanks to a partnership with Frito Lay’s Smartfood

Love Is Blind
"Love Is Blind" (Netflix)

Netflix‘s ad-supported tier is going look a bit different in the coming months. The streamer will offer two different types of sponsorships as well as what it’s currently calling a “binge” product designed to reward watching multiple episodes in a row, TheWrap can confirm.

These ad changes were announced during a keynote for the streamer during New York’s Advertising Week that was led by vice president of global advertising sales Peter Naylor.

The first major change has to do with sponsorships, which will be available to advertisers in two new forms. Title sponsorships will allow advertisers to promote their businesses by partnering with a new movie or season of a show. This ad offering is currently available in the U.S. and is set to expand globally in 2024. Frito Lay’s Smartfood became the first title sponsor in Netflix history thanks to its partnership with “Love Is Blind.”

Advertisers will also have the option of live sponsorships, which aligns with Netflix’s newfound focus on live sports. On Nov. 14, athletes who have appeared in the streamer’s sports docuseries “Formula 1: Drive to Survive” and “Full Swing” will compete against each other in The Netflix Cup, the company’s first-ever live gold tournament. Companies such as T-Mobile and Nespresso have already agreed to be part of Netflix’s live sponsorship opportunities as early as this fall.

The third ad expansion is more consumer-focused than the first two options. The “binge” product — a working title for the offering — will allow subscribers to watch a “free” episode after continuous viewing. Basically, if a Netflix user subscribed to the Standard with Ads plan watches three consecutive episodes in a row with ads, they will be rewarded with a fourth ad-free episode.

The option is set to launch globally early next year and will allow Netflix’s advertising partners insights into subscribers’ binge-watching habits.

Launched in November 2022, Netflix’s ad-supported tier has had a somewhat rocky road. Though the option has surpassed 10 million monthly active users globally, last Thursday co-CEO Ted Sarandos admitted that the option is “definitely not at the scale that we want it to be at yet.”

The Hollywood Reporter was the first to report Tuesday’s news.


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