Hulu inks content partnership with HBO in Japan.
Hulu has inked a multi-year agreement with HBO to offer popular shows such as "Sex and The City" and "The Sopranos" to subscribers in Japan - its first international market outside of America.
Less than a year since the service launched in Japan (September 2011), the amount of content available to Japanese subscribers increased by more than 300 percent.
"There are now more than 800 films and nearly 6,900 TV show episodes from 24 content providers," Johannes Larcher, Hulu's SVP of International, said in a company blog post.
In addition to American TV programming, Hulu has also secured content partnerships with more than 10 Japanese and Korean firms to offer anime series, TV shows, and films, including a partnership with local broadcaster TV Tokyo.
While the cable and satellite companies in Japan fail to penetrate a large share of the country's 48 million TV households, major private for profit broadcasters like Fuji TV, Tokyo Broadcast System, Nippon TV, TV Asahi, and TV Tokyo as well as national broadcaster NHK continue to dominate the TV landscape.
According to Jeff Lippold, digital strategy director at Euro RSCG Tokyo, TV is still the most popular entertainment medium in Japan.
He pointed out that YouTube has become the third largest website in the country, and largely because viewers go there to watch reruns of TV shows from the previous night, downloaded against the will of local TV stations.
Because Japanese users enjoy spending time with short-form content on the Internet and major TV players have not taken advantage of the medium, brands have the opportunity to step in and compete for users' time, he said.
Lippold recommends tapping niche mobile content media platforms such as Hulu to explore platform specific ad opportunities or content integration.
However, Hulu does not currently offer advertising in Japan.
But it is worth noting that Hulu has a substantial device footprint in the market. There are more than 29 million Hulu-enabled devices such as Sony TV, Sony PlayStation 3, Microsoft Xbox 360, and Nintendo Wii in its line-up of an aggressive expansion to more devices for the rest of the year.
The Hulu team based out of Roppongi, Tokyo in Japan is 19-member strong, headed by managing director, Buddy Marini.
Learn Digital Marketing Insights From Leading Brands!
ClickZ Live Chicago (Nov 3-6) will deliver over 50 sessions across 10 individual tracks, including Data-Driven Marketing, Social, Mobile, Display, Search and Email. Check out the full agenda, or register and attend one of the best ClickZ events yet!
Adaline Lau, ClickZ Asia editor, oversees day-to-day editorial operations covering digital marketing from search to social media, mobile to analytics in the region. Before ClickZ, she was senior reporter at Marketing Magazine and has worked as a journalist for The Singapore Marketer and Asia Pacific Broadcasting. Connect with her @adalinelau or Google+.
Hong Kong, October 21-22
London, November 13-14
San Francisco, November 13-14
London, November 18-19
Google My Business Listings Demystified
To help brands control how they appear online, Google has developed a new offering: Google My Business Locations. This whitepaper helps marketers understand how to use this powerful new tool.
5 Ways to Personalize Beyond the Subject Line
82 percent of shoppers say they would buy more items from a brand if the emails they sent were more personalized. This white paper offer five tactics that will personalize your email beyond the subject line and drive real business growth.