The new look, which is debuting in industry and trade circles at the Las Vegas convention, will reach consumers as part of a branding campaign planned for the first quarter of the year. The campaign will combine business and consumer platforms, including outdoor advertising and digital and social marketing.
In January 2019, months before completing its merger with CBS, Viacom snapped up Pluto for $340 million and has made it a centerpiece of the combined company’s streaming strategy. The ad-supported streaming service in November reported 20 million monthly active users, a 70% increase over its level at the time of the acquisition.
At CES, Pluto has set up shop in the “C-Space” area reserved for media and advertising companies. Executives across distribution, content, engineering and other areas are hosting meetings.
On Viacom’s most recent quarterly earnings call with Wall Street analysts, the company said 3,500 brands advertised on Pluto TV during September, the highest revenue month for the service. Total viewing minutes tripled compared with the previous September.
AVOD is a growing sector within the overall streaming space. Along with Pluto, significant AVOD players include Tubi TV, Chicken Soup for the Soul Entertainment and NBCUniversal’s soon-to-launch Peacock, the last of which will also have a subscription version. Pluto’s approach is unique, however, because instead of featuring an on-demand library it bundles together dozens of channels in a live offering resembling traditional pay-TV. Since the acquisition, it has added several Viacom- and CBS-branded networks, including CMT last month.