When Netflix announced its plan to launch an ad -supported price level, speculation about the potential to generate extra revenue became a big talk in the industry. Some estimates suggested Netflix could earn an extra $5.5 billion by 2027 thanks to the new plan.
The ad-supported tier launched on Nov. 3 at a price point of $6.99 per month, but it has a long way to go if it is to meet market expectations for increased revenue, according to a new report from market intelligence firm Antenna. According to antenna data, the new Basic With ADS plan was Netflix’s least popular registration option during the month of November.
Antenne’s figures say that the new plan accounted for only 9% of new US subscriptions in the month of November. Fifty seven percent of subscribers to the new level were new customers to Netflix, while 43 % were existing Netflix users downgraded from a more expensive price level.
Netflix’s numbers so far lag the stronger gains HBO Max saw when it launched an ad-supported tier in 2021. At the time, HBO Max’s plan with ads accounted for 15% of new signups in the first month, and just 14% of users in the new the level had downgraded from the ad-free plan.
Consumers have shown that with proper pricing and packaging, they will choose ad -supported video services. In fact, services that were launched from day one with an ad -supported level (or, in HUL’s case, have launched ad -free, but introduced an ad -supported alternative many years ago) much higher proportion of subscribers who choose the ad -supported option.
If the new data from the antenna to and including is reasonably close to Netflix’s internal numbers, it means another shock on the road for a company that has had tough 12 months. Netflix saw two straight quarters of subscriber losses in 2022, and had to launch its Basic with ads plan without content from some studios because Netflix could not agree with those studios on a fair distribution of ad revenue.
These new advertising revenue can be volatile for Netflix, at least in the beginning. Earlier in December, it was reported that Netflix reimbursed some ad companies because they could not fulfill their contractual views. There may be several causes for this deficiency, but combined with the new data from the antenna regarding new Netflix subscribers, it is a worrying sign for the world’s largest streams.
Netflix still has 223 million global subscribers, and the new Basic with ads plan is currently only available in 11 countries other than the US. When it is rolled out more globally, it should see a boost in new subscribers. But this is hardly the start the company envisioned for its new, lower price level, and it marks another reason why Netflix is likely to leave 2022 behind.