The Over-the-Top Marketing Juggernauts Have Arrived


Netflix versus Disney is the right comp,” says Laura Martin of Needham. “Netflix just raised price and Disney is now saying they are going to do a $12.99 bundle for Hulu, ESPN Plus, and Disney Plus, That feels like bundling is a smart idea and free services feel like a better value. I think what we are going to get for the first time in over-the-top is the marketing juggernauts have arrived. Guys who market things for a living. This is what Disney does better than any company in the media space.”

Laura Martin, Managing Directory of investment banking firm Needham & Company, discusses how the game is changing for over-the-top (OTT) with the arrival of Disney Plus, in an interview on CNBC:

I would call Roku the winning aggregator of all over the top platforms. They’re now in 30 million homes out of 120 million US homes. This means you can’t watch Apple Plus, Disney Plus, Warner Brothers Plus, and Disney Plus without going to Roku because they are reaching 30 percent of connected households. That gives them pricing power against those juggernauts. 

Netflix versus Disney is the right comp. Netflix just raised price and Disney is now saying they are going to do a $12.99 bundle for Hulu, ESPN Plus, and Disney Plus. You are getting three services for $13. Really, four streams from Netflix is now $14 after the recent price increase. That feels like bundling is a smart idea and free services feel like a better value. I think what we are going to get for the first time in over-the-top is marketing juggernauts have arrived. Guys who market things for a living. This is what Disney does better than any company in the media space. 

Disney+ Takes Netflix Growth Negative In a Significant Way

I think it takes Netflix growth negative in a significant way in the US. Bob Iger has said he wants 90 percent awareness of Disney Plus by the time they launch on November 12th. To do that, that means they are putting it in every single theme park, they are buying billboards, they’re going on ABC which they own, they are going on ESPN which they own. They are going on everything. He said it was the most important media launch initiative since he’s been there. Bob Iger got there in 2005.

The Roku channel is all ad-driven, meaning free. It looks like NBC is going to launch ad-free. CBS has news that is ad-driven. So I think we are going to get 50 percent of viewing with no subscription fee that is ad-driven. I think it is going to be cluttered. In my opinion, you won’t go from three average SVOD subscriptions to five.

OTT Marketing Juggernauts Have Arrived, Says Needham’s Laura Martin



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