We’ve been talking to our clients about the growing medium of FAST channels.  Let’s take a look at what they are, why they’re growing so fast (if you pardon the pun) and how you can implement them in your campaigns.

FAST stands for Free Ad Supported TV – they are channels on streaming platforms that are free for the viewer to use and funded through advertising.  These channels concentrate on a genre or even a specific programme and solely show this content.  For example, ITV X have a FAST channel that shows back-to-back episodes of Love Island and nothing else, if that’s your type on paper!

The reason these channels are growing so quickly is driven by both viewers and advertisers.  Viewership is growing rapidly due to them having the linear TV experience yet only serving content that is desirable for the individual.  The growth in advertiser attention is due to their ability to provide incremental reach on top of BVoD and Linear TV.  They do this by targeting incredibly niche audiences through specific programme/genre targeting, instead of buying a broad BVoD or Linear TV campaign where you may only land in your ideal programme once.

FAST channels first appeared in isolation on Roku and Tubi TV in the US but Pluto TV were the first to concentrate on FAST channels and make them a statement on their platform.  Pluto TV found huge success with FAST channels which has led to other large streaming platforms adopting this model resulting in the FAST channel market growing to a net worth of $4bn in ad revenue.  Viacom saw the potential in them before most and purchased Pluto TV in January 2019 for $340m shortly after the platform launched into the UK in October of 2018.  ITV are the first heritage brand to take the leap with FAST channels on their digital streaming platform ITV X.

If you’re interested in how we can help you make the most of FAST channels, or if you’d like any more information about them, please get in touch!