Fox Nation sells ads before Netflix or Disney +
Streaming outlet Fox Nation is already running its major rivals commercials say they want to sell.
Major subscription-based streamers such as Netflix and Disney + have caught the attention of Madison Avenue with recent announcements about the launch of ad-supported levels for their services. Fox Nation, a small streaming outlet that is part of Fox News Media, has quietly opened up some of its choices to advertisers.
Subscribers who recently streamed “Duck Family Treasure”, a new special that plays members of the Robertson family from the long-running series “Duck Dynasty”, probably saw something that people who watch excessively often do not: commercials that appear at the bottom third of the screen while the action continued over them.
Several of the ads – from Camping World, a specialist in the sale of recreational vehicles – are on their way. After launching the first five episodes of the series, Fox Nation is set to unveil five this Sunday. Camping World ads will appear. In addition to the Fox Nation campaigns, Camping World also sponsored a one-hour “Duck Family Treasure” special on Fox News Channel last Sunday. Ads for the company were run throughout the show.
“It’s very rare,” said Jeff Collins, executive vice president of advertising sales at Fox News Media, for advertising on Fox Nation. He adds: “We do not do it excessively, and we certainly do not do it in most programs.”
But Fox Nation does it anyway, even though other premium services have provided early offers. Disney is preparing to launch a new ad-supported version of Disney +, with just four minutes of commercials per hour, and has sold availability in the industry’s “advance market”. Netflix has also signaled its intention to start offering ads at a lower price level, and its executives said at the Cannes Advertising Festival this week that the company is holding discussions with external parties who could serve as a potential partner in the new sales effort.
Getting an ad on Fox Nation is not easy. “We only do it for select, large partnerships,” says Collins, who notes that the advertising pact with Camping World is part of a “multi-million-dollar deal.” Fox hopes to sell wider packages of inventory, he says, which could include streaming as well as traditional television that can capture a “live” audience.
The company will consider running ads in other Fox Nation series, he says, but will not show them in the usual way: disruptive 30-second spots. Collins says that Fox prefers to place the ads in the program at the bottom of the screen and in other ways that do not take the viewer away from the program selected. “We stick to billboards, lower thirds,” he says.
Fox News Media believes advertisers will be interested in an expanded range of programming that focuses on lifestyle rather than hard news or politics. While Fox Nation initially referred to itself as a kind of “Netflix for conservatives” when it was launched in 2018, the service has placed new emphasis on true crime programs such as “Cops” as well as documentaries. To be sure, it still streams programs that appeal to the conservative base of cable siblings.
Collins thinks sponsors may be interested in a new documentary series about Yellowstone National Park told by Kevin Costner, or a “Patriot Awards” show. “We’re more and more focused on lifestyle,” Fox Fox said. “We have a lot of new content on the way that we have a lot of conversations about” with advertisers.