Hulu Advertising Inventory Guidelines

Updated: October 2023

These guidelines (“Guidelines”) apply to purchases of advertising inventory sold in the U.S. on the Hulu website or application or on any Hulu-related digital properties (“Hulu Advertising Inventory”) through direct buys and/or through Hulu’s self-service ad manager tool (“Hulu Ad Manager”). These Guidelines are incorporated into and a part of the applicable insertion order terms, and, as applicable, the Hulu Advertising Manager Terms located at https://home.admanager.hulu.com/terms/.  The Guidelines do not, and cannot, provide an exhaustive list of guidelines or examples, and Hulu reserves the right to review, accept, decline, or remove any and all advertising on a case-by-case basis.  Hulu also reserves the right to approve exceptions to these Guidelines on a case-by-case basis.  Hulu may update these guidelines from time to time without notice, so please check in and review them regularly.

  1. Disclosures for Advertising Materials. Advertising materials and the advertising sponsor must be clearly identifiable and may not be disguised as editorial content or programming as determined by Hulu.  The method of disclosure can differ depending on the platform, target audience, and type of advertising, but in all cases must be clear and conspicuous.  Similarly, disclosures concerning a product, service or offer, such as how a product works, what is included with a product, service, or offer, or what is excluded from a product, service, or offer, must be made clear and conspicuous to a reasonable consumer.
  2. Substantiation, Legality, Third Party Rights. Advertisers must be able to substantiate any express or implied claims conveyed in the advertising materials, including any such claims made through endorsers. An advertised offer must be fulfilled as stated in the advertisement, and advertisements may only portray or make claims about the product or service being advertised that are accurate and truthful. Advertisements must not be misleading and must comply with all applicable laws, rules, and regulations, including industry self-regulatory guidelines, and must not infringe or violate any third party’s rights.
  3. Advertising Specifications. Advertising materials must comply with Hulu’s advertising specifications, which can be found at https://www.disneyadvertising.com/mediakit/hulu/ and with respect to Hulu Ad Manager, at https://home.admanager.hulu.com/tech-specs-for-video-ads/.
  4. Third Party Technology. All third party technology included in or appended to advertising by or on behalf of the advertiser, including any tags, pixels or other software code utilized for brand safety, invalid traffic/fraud or viewability, shall be subject to Hulu’s prior written approval. Disney’s Data Collection and Use Policy, which can be found at https://www.disneyadsales.com/mediakit/data-policy-general/  and Disney’s Data Collection and Use Policy – Child Directed Properties, which can be found at https://www.disneyadsales.com/mediakit/data-policy-child/ shall apply.
  5. Advertiser Landing Page. Where personal information is solicited on the advertiser’s landing page, (i) any collection of personal information must be in full compliance with all privacy laws and (ii) advertiser must clearly explain to the consumer how advertiser will use the personal information collected, and (iii) the advertiser must provide a clear and conspicuous link to its privacy policy on the landing page from the advertisement and provide users a mechanism for opting out of data collection where required by law.
  6. Language.  Advertisements must be in English or Spanish.
  7. Food or Beverage Advertising. Advertising of food, beverages, restaurants and food services are subject to the following restrictions:
    1. Advertising of food, beverages, restaurants, and food services must meet The Walt Disney Company’s Nutritional Guideline policy and receive Hulu approval prior to being served. Food and beverages that do not meet Disney’s Nutritional Guideline criteria (found at https://twdchealthyliving.com/nutrition-criteria/nutritional-calculator) cannot be advertised to children and are subject to programming restrictions.
    2. Advertising for food, beverages, restaurants and food services that do not meet The Walt Disney Company’s Nutritional Guideline criteria (e.g., sugar-sweetened beverages, candy/treats, junk chips, some Quick Service Restaurants) should be targeted only to adults. For example, the look and feel of the advertising should be adult-oriented and kid-appealing artwork or language cannot be used (e.g. no animated characters).
  8. Political and Controversial Issue Ads (e.g., lobbyists, PACs, political parties, candidates for elected office, ballot measures, advocacy groups, etc.). Hulu will consider on a case-by-case basis advertising that presents a position on a controversial public issue, subject to the below.
    1. Advertising that presents a position on a controversial public issue may be unacceptable if:
      1. its content, or other content referenced in the ad or otherwise disseminated by the advertiser, is deemed offensive (e.g., on racial, religious, or ethnic grounds);
      2. it is an attack of a personal nature on a private individual, an attack on an individual business, or a comment on a private dispute;
      3. it contains violent or otherwise graphic or potentially offensive content that is deemed to be inappropriate for Hulu’s viewing audience;
      4. it is incompatible with Hulu’s other advertising guidelines;
      5. it is inconsistent with Hulu or corporate policy; or
      6. it offends Hulu sensibilities.
    2. As part of the clearance process for such advertising, substantiation may be required to support any factual claims made.
    3. Such advertising must disclose the name of the actual individual or organization that is paying for the ad. This disclosure must be in the form of a ‘paid for by…’ or ‘sponsored by…’ super, or in a form otherwise required by law.
    4. Any such advertising may be subject to profile age and programming restrictions.
    5. Use of any intellectual property, talent or employees of the Walt Disney Company family of brands is not authorized and should be avoided.
  9. Prohibited Content. The following list describes content within advertising that is not acceptable in Hulu Advertising Inventory:
    • Content that is reasonably determined to be harmful, threatening, obscene, fraudulent, harassing, defamatory, including an attack of a personal nature on a private individual, an attack on an individual business, or a comment on a private dispute
    • Claims or representations that could be interpreted as wrongfully discriminatory based on race, sex, religion, nationality, disability, sexual orientation, or age
    • Sensationalism (killer bees, gossip, aliens, scandal, etc.)
    • Inflammatory, graphic, or offensive content, language or images, including bad language and proxies for bad language (e.g., X@#%!), graphic violence, and gratuitous use of guns/ammunition/firearms/weapons, tobacco products, illegal drugs, and marijuana
    • Content that includes excretory references (animal or human)
    • Content that potentially encourages imitation of unsafe, inappropriate or otherwise illegal behavior
    • Illegal activities or references to products and/or services used to assist in furtherance of illegal activities
    • Content that includes the Emergency Alert System (“EAS”) or sound-alike tones
    • Content that mimics news techniques (e.g., “breaking news” language, a news ticker, etc.) or has the appearance of being a news report
    • Sexually explicit or suggestive content including sexualized full or partial nudity, sexual innuendo, double entendres, etc. (non sexualized partial nudity will be considered on a case-by-case basis)
    • Materials that infringe or assist others to infringe on any copyright, trademark or other intellectual property rights
    • Unauthorized or unapproved uses of products, services, creative assets (e.g. talent, characters, movie or show titles and logos, show imagery, color scheme, font(s)) or employees of the Walt Disney Company family of brands
    • Content or imagery that copies, mimics, parodies, or mocks current or past advertising creative of any of The Walt Disney Company family of brands
    • An implied yet unauthorized affiliation or favored status with any of The Walt Disney Company family of brands
    • Any content that includes the unauthorized use of intellectual property owned or otherwise controlled by The Walt Disney Company family of brands, including but not limited to the Disney brand’s name, trademark or logo in any form (for example, voiceover, promotional codes, text overlay, etc.)
    • Content that contains or promotes spyware, malware or other harmful code
    • Content that implies interactivity but is not in fact interactive, or the interactivity is not otherwise approved by Hulu, e.g., call-to-action buttons, URLs and QR codes
    • Any content that directly links to content that contains any of the above prohibited content
  10. Additional Content Considerations. Advertisers who incorporate the following content or messaging should make sure to do so in compliance with all laws and industry guidelines.
    • Animals — use or misuse of
    • Contests, sweepstakes, giveaways
    • Environmental claims
    • Financial claims (including loans, leasing, credit, financing, layaway, financial product benefits and risks, etc.)
    • Foreign language
    • Health and nutrition claims
    • Product demonstrations
    • Public symbols/leaders
    • Behavior requiring safety equipment
    • Visual effects
    • Telephone numbers as props
    • White coat as wardrobe or prop in context of health and beauty claims
  11. Prohibited Products, Services, Industries or Categories.  Advertising for the following products, services, industries or categories is not accepted:
    • Cannabis, marijuana, CBD and related products and services
    • Credit repair services
    • Death and death-related products and services (funerals, funeral homes, cemeteries, mortuaries), guns, ammunition, firearms and related dangerous products or violent sports/recreational activities
    • Illicit drugs and related products and services (with the exception of anti-drug campaigns approved by Hulu)
    • Money-making opportunities
    • Movies with an MPAA “X” or NC-17 rating
    • Video Games with a rating of AO
    • Products or services that are adult-themed or of a sexually explicit nature (e.g., pornography, sex sites, adult magazines, escort or paid dating, sex toys, “900” or “976” telephone services, pay-per-call)
    • Tobacco (e.g., cigarettes, e-cigarettes, cigars, pipes, chewing tobacco) and related products and services, including nicotine (with the exception of anti-smoking campaigns approved by Hulu)
  12. Products, Services, Industries, and Categories reviewed on a case-by-case basis.  The following products, services, industries or categories will be considered on a case-by-case basis, taking into consideration various factors, including, without limitation, appropriateness of advertising content and product and programming restrictions, and age and location targeting restrictions:
    • Advertising of products that may raise science and environmental issues (e.g., hunting, energy/fossil fuels, forestry/lumber, agriculture, chemicals, minerals, plastics, wildlife tourism, zoos and aquariums, etc.)
    • Alcohol (beer, wine and hard liquor)
    • Any direct business competitor of The Walt Disney Company family of brands (e.g., theme parks, movies, streaming services, etc.)
    • Black magic, astrology, horoscopes, occult, paranormal and psychic services
    • Cosmetic or body modification procedures, including tanning in an ultraviolet device and plastic surgery
    • Contests, sweepstakes, giveaways, lotteries, fantasy leagues
    • Cryptocurrency and Non Fungible Token (“NFT”)- related services
    • Dietary, vitamins, and nutritional supplements and weight loss drugs, products and services, including slimming products such as diet pills, food substitutes such as slimming shakes, services such as weight loss programs
    • Employment services
    • Financial, banking, investment, insurance, real estate, brokerage and loan services
    • Gambling and sports betting
    • Government, non profit, non governmental organizations and charitable services, including public service announcements
    • Movies with an MPAA “R”
    • Television or streaming programming with a rating of “TV-MA”
    • Video Games with a rating of “M” or “RP”
    • Online or other dating services
    • Prescription pharmaceuticals and medical devices
    • Products or services regarding sexual health (e.g., condoms, contraceptives, personal lubricants, pregnancy tests, erectile dysfunction medication)
    • Professional services (legal services, doctor’s offices, etc.)
    • Religion and religious themed ads
    • Violent sports and recreational activities (e.g., MMA)
  13. Hulu Ad Manager Specific Terms: In addition to the other Guidelines herein, the following terms are applicable to Hulu Advertising Inventory purchased through Hulu Ad Manager:
    1. Language.  Advertisements submitted via Hulu Ad Manager must be in English only for technical reasons at this time.
    2. Advertising to Children.  Hulu Ad Manager advertisers may not direct advertising to children under the age of 13.
  14. Guidelines applicable to Hulu Advertising Inventory directed at children under 13.  In addition to the guidelines above, the following additional guidelines apply to advertising directed to users whose profile indicates that they are under 13 years old.  
    1. Disclosures. In addition to text disclosures, audio disclosures should be used to make material disclosures.
    2. Compliance. The advertising materials and delivery must also comply with the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act, the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Rule, as amended, and any United States Federal Trade Commission guidance on the foregoing Act and Rule (collectively, “COPPA”) and the Children’s Advertising Review Unit’s (“CARU”) guidelines.  To learn more about COPPA and CARU, see  https://www.ftc.gov/enforcement/rules/rulemaking-regulatory-reform-proceedings/childrens-online-privacy-protection-rule and https://bbbprograms.org/programs/all-programs/children’s-advertising-review-unit/Ad-Guidelines.
    3. Hulu Review. All advertisements directed at children under 13 must run through Hulu’s internal ad approval system before launch.
    4. Data Collection. Advertisers must comply with Disney’s Data Collection and Use Policy – Child Directed Properties, which can be found at https://www.disneyadsales.com/mediakit/data-policy-child/
    5. Entertainment Software Products (e.g., console games, mobile games) directed at children under 13. Industry sponsored ratings for entertainment software products must be disclosed in video and audio.  For more information on ESRB ratings, go to esrb.org.
    6. Films and Videos directed at children under 13. Advertisers should take care to ensure that only age-appropriate videos and films are advertised to children. If an industry rating system applies to the product, such as the Motion Picture Association (“MPA”) rating for films, the rating label must be prominently displayed.
    7. Products Labeled “Keep out of reach of children”.  Advertising for products that are labeled “Keep out of reach of children” but are of benefit to children, e.g. sunscreen or dental products, should depict adult supervision. In such cases, Advertisers must be able to support the implied claim that the product does not present a danger to children.
    8. Products, Services, Industries and Categories. Advertising for products, services, industries and categories listed in sections 8, 9 and 11 above will not be accepted in this inventory.  Advertising for products, services, industries and categories listed in Section 7 and 12 above will generally not be accepted, though Hulu will consider advertising for some products that could be appropriate for children (e.g., child-appropriate sweepstakes/contests, public service announcements, nutritious food, etc.) on a case-by-case basis.
The use of Graphik is acceptable in cases where the Client cannot supply their own typeface.
On living room, mobile, and tablet devices, the color gradient overlay is dynamic and will change based on the cover story art. It is not something we can control on our end.
If the tagline/date messaging doesn’t fit within the 11 syllables max, it can be included as text.
Stress mark should be marked with [capitals] to indicate the primary stressed syllable, as in: news・pa・per [NOOZ-pey-per] in・for・ma・tion [in-fer-MEY-shuhn]
  • No symbols such as registered marks, copyrights, etc.
  • If symbols are required, they will be presented in standard text such as” Brand (TM)”

Q: Why do you prefer PCM codec?

A: PCM codec is lossless audio quality, so whenever possible, please deliver PCM audio.

Q: What does native frame rate mean?

A: Native frame rate refers to the frame rate the source footage was shot. Whenever possible, we require all videos to be delivered in their native frame rate. This means that no frame rate conversion should be performed, which includes adding 3:2 pulldown for broadcast.

Q: Should the bitrate be constant if delivering ProRes codec?

A: No, since ProRes codec is built to be variable, this is waived.

Q: Can you accept bitrate higher than 30 Mbps?

A: Yes, we can accept bitrate beyond the recommended range for H.264 and ProRes. In the case of ProRes, bitrate will often exceed 30 Mbps due to its variable setting.

Q: When is letterboxing allowed and not allowed?

A: When the native aspect ratio is 1.78:1 or 1.33:1 throughout the entire program, there should not be any letterboxing (black bars on top and bottom). We should see an active picture take up the full frame. If the aspect ratio is wider than 1.78:1, such as 2.35:1, matting on the top and bottom is permissible. Additionally, if there is a creative choice to add matting or if there is a mix of native aspect ratios, this is usually waived, but please reach out to your Hulu representative to confirm.