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Kelly Campbell’s appointment in February to be president of Hulu, after three years as its marketing chief, underscores how important the concept of a brand is to the next stage of the streaming wars.
As more services launch, each with their own set of high-profile, star-studded originals, marketing will be just as crucial for attracting subscribers and viewers as finding the next “Handmaid’s Tale.”
Hulu created the blueprint for hybrid ad- and subscription-supported streaming video, a model becoming more popular today. The company faces new competition for ad dollars and subscribers from services like NBCUniversal’s Peacock and Quibi.
Campbell is overseeing major strategic and cultural shifts at Hulu that showcase how streaming is becoming a bigger part of legacy media’s overall strategy as well.
Since Disney took full control of Hulu, in 2019, the streaming company has moved closer into the Disney machine. Hulu became the streaming home of cable network FX in March. And the service is being sold in bundles alongside sister streamers Disney Plus and ESPN Plus.
Disney’s streaming services have been the media giant’s lifeline in the pandemic, fueling growth while other divisions, like parks and theatrical distribution, sputter. Hulu had 35.5 million paid subscribers at the end of June, making it Disney’s second-largest streaming service behind Disney Plus.