Tubi Surpasses 20M Monthly Viewers; Inside Samsung’s AI Strategy

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Over The Top

Ad-supported streaming TV service Tubi surpassed 20 million monthly users and 94 million hours of content in May, the company said Monday. Tubi’s fortunes are important because advertisers and investors are relying on ad-enabled VOD startups to challenge the position of gigantic subscription players, namely Netflix and Amazon. Other key players in ad-supported OTT include Roku’s programmatic platform, Hulu’s tiered approach and Tubi direct competitor Pluto TV, which Viacom acquired earlier this year. Tubi’s strides demonstrate “the vitality of AVOD in an environment fatigued by the amount of subscription video options,” CEO Farhad Massoudi said in a press release.

Need Some Help?

Samsung has put serious time and money into its personal assistant tech, dubbed Bixby, since it acquired the AI startup Viv for more than $200 million in 2016. Samsung hosts a Bixby developer conference and has the AI service built into Samsung’s popular smart home appliances and new Galaxy and Note smartphones. But despite the resources and distribution, can Samsung crack into a category where the mindshare and market share is utterly dominated by the triumvirate of Apple, Google and Amazon? A Q&A with Adam Cheyer, Samsung Mobile’s VP of R&D, sheds some light on the company’s plan to gain ground on the current AI cool kids and turn Bixby into a reliable revenue stream. More at VentureBeat.

Be The Brand

Direct-to-consumer companies are known for their performance marketing chops. But they also need to invest in their brands. “A low hanging fruit way to get started: reserve 30-40% of retargeting media spend towards brand marketing,” tweeted Reza Khadjavi, co-founder and CEO of the retargeting ad tech startup Shoelace. Check out the full thread. Maybe a percent or two of new site visitors in a given month will convert after checking out a product, he said, and many that don’t haven’t given up the brand; they may be waiting on a pay raise or the right reason to purchase. Following up on missed opportunities with aspirational messaging normally considered top-of-the-funnel creative could pay dividends. As could retargeting purchasers with validating messages to avoid returns or buyer’s remorse. “Most of these campaigns will in fact be ROAS positive. Just don’t be bummed if they hover around 1.5X while your conversion focused retargeting hits 5-6X.”

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