Streaming Service Ads Ranked!

On today’s episode of Tier Facqts, we’re ranking streaming service ads from some of the best streaming services in the country. Which one comes out on top? Find out right here!

Hey, what is going on? My name is Gabe and we’re going to be ranking these 9 different video ads from 9 different streaming companies. Now heads up, it’s going to be under an acquisition lens rather than brands.

So we’re going to be ranking them based on the likelihood that not only is somebody going to click on the ad but actually follow through and subscribe to the service that’s directly attributable to this ad. Also, we’re going to be having them under the prism of social media best practices which is where we pulled these from. These are social media ads.

Streaming Service Ads: Tier List

We’re going to be ranking them into 4 different tiers. So the top tier is Take My Money. Right when I see this ad, I know that I want them to take my money. I instantly know what the purpose is for me to do when I see the ad and I am going to do it. Second tier is Binge-worthy. Third tier is I Probably Forgot I’m Subscribed to This and that is actually real for me on 1 or 2 of these right now. Then the fourth tier, the worst tier, maybe the worst insult you can give is it’s Worse Than Cable. Maybe the only thing good about cable, at least for me, is football. But anyways, let us get into it.

Prime Video

So Prime Video, let’s start it up. This is elevating the ad! You want the beginning scene to be as impactful as possible and to have the best audience have the deepest conceptualization of what the product is. Otherwise, there’s going to be a drop-off within a couple seconds. And if you don’t have the most powerful image, you’re going to captivate the least amount of volume of people.

However, I’m not the biggest fan of this intro. So we’re talking about “Being the Ricardos” and this is Lucy. While it does look like her 100%, it is not her and the audience is going to need a deeper understanding about what the product they’re selling is.

I would just cut that first scene in general where you have the logo that’s going off there. “Lucy, I’m home.” I think I now have a better idea what that is from the second scene. So that’s one thing that I would cut right away, but overall they do a good job of storytelling what the show is.

They’re using headlines throughout so the audience has a visualization of what’s going on. It’s not a sound-off world. My big thing as well is, it is a little bit long. At 30 seconds, they should be able to tell a more concise story. So I am going to put it at Binge-worthy.

There’s no reason for this to be 30 seconds. I mean they’re telling a little bit of a detailed story but it’s nothing like “Oh, my goodness, this is super compelling.” So that’s one of the reasons why it’s Binge-worthy. It’s good. It tells the message of what it’s going to be but they could be doing a better job. Cool.

Disney+

All right. Let’s get into Disney. “Christmas never felt so good.” By the way, this is one of the few ones that does this and remember how we said you want to lead with the benefit? Well, right at the beginning, Disney knows Christmas never felt so good for $7.99. You instantly know what the benefit is. You know why you should click on this ad.

Then they follow up with hitting those Christmas high notes. And I love the next scenes, “seeing family you haven’t seen in ages.” That’s another strong visualization that follows up on those headlines. So they’re using headlines to give you a visual understanding about what’s going on and they’re following up with a strong visualization that Disney has within their content portfolio.

So it’s strong visuals that everybody recognizes. Of course, they use the Mandalorian. Maybe it got a little bit over saturated but definitively a year ago, Disney would’ve definitely led with the Mandalorian. But we’re looking at an ad within 15 seconds that’s strong visuals.

They use headlines to be able to give you a deeper understanding and then it’s very concise. Disney is Take My Money. As the Mandalorian would say, “This is the way” to take my money. Great ad from Disney, really not too much to complain about.

HBO Max

HBO Max. Cool. So by the way, HBO is totally doing this because they need to play a brand play. However, if you’re just leading with your brand at the very, very beginning, it’s not going to be the most impactful. Instead I would rather lead with a more compelling benefit about possibly their price that they’re doing.

But what they’re doing here is a good job. They’re leading with Succession, which is probably one of the more powerful shows that’s visually recognizable. I’m not going to hate on it. They’re not deeply storytelling one particular video or piece of content but they are giving a wide variety and they’re doing it in a very concise way.

I’m going with Take My Money. I have a fairly strong understanding of exactly what they’re doing and they’re being direct. They also have a price point at the end. That beginning that I spoke about is now on… That goes so fast. The way you can really digest that is subconsciously. I can’t even pause… paused it! “It’s now on HBO Max in December.” So that is a strong benefit or it is a decent to strong benefit. Anyways, HBO you are taking my money. In real life, you take my money as well.

Hulu

Let’s go to Hulu. Yeah, this is weak. I want to say I love Kirk Herbstreit but I’m just seeing Scott Van Pelt and Kirk Herbstreit. I have no idea what it’s about. There’s no audio captions at all and this is a sound on commercial which is not optimized for social media.

So as I’m walking through, I just see two guys talking about sports. Guy’s complaining about a guy throwing his arm. Visually, I guess you can say by his T-shirt where it says “Watch ESPN on Hulu and live TV,” that’s where I’m able to understand, but they don’t lead with the benefit.

If you want to listen to it with the sound off, they do not lead with the benefit at all. That’s coming at the end of the video. It’s 15 seconds. Yeah. Is this worse than cable? This is Worse Than Cable. Sorry, ESPN, you are on cable and many would say you are not as strong as you used to be. Cool. All right. So that is Hulu.

Netflix

Let’s get into Netflix. I like this one. So what they’re doing is they’re storytelling one piece of content very deep. And by the way, we can be a little bit more particular if we know it’s a better strategy going very deep in one particular story, or telling like HBO did, several different pieces of content.

What’s more captivating? Go deep on one or getting broad to the others to make sure that you speak to that larger audience? That’s something that’s going to be compelling for all of them.

However, I really like the way that they set this one up. So you see at the beginning of the video, “this is Andrew Garfield at his best,” and it shows multiple things going on. “A stunning directorial debut from Lin-Manuel Miranda.” I like it.

I think they could have done a little bit better of a storytelling but the way that they were able to piece it out, it does make the video compelling from Netflix. So I’m going to give this a Binge-worthy. Okay.

Paramount+

And now we’re going into Paramount. “You’re invited to Adele.” You’re invited to Adele. That doesn’t tell me much and by the way, we are being extra picky because all of these streaming services hopefully has great content. So we’re not judging them by their content and we’re judging them against themselves as well.

So in comparison to the rest of the videos, it doesn’t tell me much about their service. It doesn’t even tell me much about the performance that Adele is having. It’s not as compelling. There’s less storytelling going on and they don’t lead with the most powerful benefits.

I’m probably going to Forget I Subscribed To This. And I would imagine as well that’s not Paramount’s most compelling visual content, nothing against Adele from an audible standpoint.

Peacock

Going on the opposite side of the spectrum, we’re going to look at Peacock which they definitely are intentionally using this content. So going from Adele, maybe not the most compelling, we’re going to the opposite side of spectrum with Peacock where it’s just instant drama.

By the way, they’re using audio captions there, high drama moments, people screaming at each other, the ultimate girls’ trip. I wouldn’t say it’s the ultimate girls trip, but it is definitely the ultimate girl drama and what is it? 15 seconds? Yeah, 15 seconds. There is so much of them throwing at each other. Drama’s already ensuing, it’s getting me interested. I’m terrible because I prefer the classy so much more over the drama that Peacock did but real is real.

I mean, that’s going to Take My Money. That’s what’s going to sell visually at the beginning. It tells me exactly what it is. There are captions that are able to follow through. It’s 15 seconds. The pacing is really good as well. You know what, that’s going to be dropped because they do not say exactly what their plan is. It doesn’t go in the larger scope about Peacock.

If I want to watch that one particular show I’m going to be pissed if I am not able to watch that within 15 minutes because that is definitely drama. So download that instant watch. Cool.

Showtime

Now let’s go to SHOWTIME. The beginning’s a little weak for me. It’s just in the fields. I know if you watch that particular show, whatever the show is, you may visually recognize it. I don’t. There’s no captions. I don’t know what those girls are saying. The rest of it’s fine.

Oh, there’s one thing I hate about this. This is going to go from Binge-worthy to I’ll Probably Forget That I Subscribed To This. So the opening’s not… They can 100% change it. Everything else is… there could be captions as well. At least when those two girls are looking at each other face to face but the very end screen, why is there a girl sticking her tongue out?

There’s no context from what movie that is from or what TV show that is from. It’s literally just an obnoxious off-brand girl going crazy. SHOWTIME, I’m Probably Going To Forget That I Subscribed To This. 

Starz

All right now. Let’s get into the last one and that is a borderline video. We are going to move Hulu up only because of what Starz did and by the way, there’s not all bad in this. But let me list the bad parts first.

It is 38 seconds long. That’s way too long. You should make a shortened version of this. The editing… So if you listen to this with the sound on, then it’s just music. You can’t follow along with anyone speaking. And it’s not just that there are no captions but you can’t even understand what’s happening in the video. 

So all we know is BMF is about drug dealers or something. Cool. Like there are tons of videos or shows about drug dealing and streets hustling, yada, yada, yada. Just showing those scenes, high-moment scenes, is not going to give as compelling of the story as you need.

Also, the template that they have where it says $20 for six months is not the worst thing to be able to have. This is the one thing that I would say it’s not bad because you’re able to at least understand what the benefit of it is. Like, why are you watching this? Oh, it’s because they want me to subscribe. So you’re going to get a higher volume of audience who at least is aware of what the benefit is.

Personally for me as well, the entire time you’re showing a discount, that is definitely devaluing the product — devaluing the brand if you’re having a discount out there the entire time. 

Final Thoughts

Hulu, you should be Worse Than Cable and you’re right there. We can interchange these. I’m going to push you up a little bit just because that Starz is so bad. If we had a fifth tier, that would be even below what Hulu is. They’re not on the same tier.

But let me know what you think in the comments below and where you would rank the videos. Is there anything that we should have ranked higher, should have ranked lower? Let us know and enjoy watching the videos, too. 

Ranking streaming service ads was incredibly fun! Some ads were good, some were bad, and some were surprising. If you liked our video ranking streaming service ads from all your favorite streaming platforms, you can subscribe to our YouTube Channel for more! And, click here for blogs on Paid Social Advertising.

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