Vudu, the online streaming platform owned by Walmart, is carving out a distinct proposition based on appealing to families in the American heartlands as it seeks to stand out from the competition.

Julian Franco, Vudu’s head/advertising video-on-demand (AVOD), discussed this subject during a keynote session at Advertising Week New York 2019.

“Our customers are all across America,” he said. (For more, read WARC’s in-depth report: Walmart’s Vudu stands out in the streaming space by appealing to busy families.)

“They’re not just based in Silver Lake or Williamsburg … We’re not programming for just those coastal customers. There are a lot of people, and a lot of services, that are already programming for them and doing a great job of it,” Franco noted.

Competition in the streaming category is intensifying rapidly, with Apple, Disney and WarnerMedia – a unit of telco AT&T – joiningNetflix, Hulu and Amazon in the online battle for eyeballs.

Vudu’s strategy to win broadly mirrors that of Walmart as a whole, which boasts that 90% of Americans live within ten miles of a Walmart store – a statistic that highlights its proudly mass-market credentials.

And its streaming unit, similarly, is not replicating the classic online-content playbook, which emphasises prestige, edgy shows that can attract city-dwelling millennials on the East and West coasts.

“What we’re going to do is focus on the handful of cities in between. There’s a handful of cities between New York City and LA. And we think that’s our sweet spot.”

Franco further reported that – reflecting Walmart’s brand strategy of enticing busy moms with the promise of saving time and money – Vudu aspires to reach a wide, inclusive audience in these urban centers.

“Our core customers are busy families. So what we set out to do was say, ‘What’s most important for busy families? What’s most important for mom and dad?’” Franco said. “What we built at Vudu is, ultimately, what we believe is the best platform for families to watch movies and TV.”

Sourced from WARC