Hulu keeps bringing in the fans, even without Sarah Palin

After jumping to become the sixth most viewed online U.S. video site in October, Hulu managed to keep its spot in November despite not having the benefit of a Sarah Palin/Tina Fey boost from Saturday Night Live

Hulu is the new star of the rapid growth of online video as a mainstream media in U.S. New comScore data shows more than 77 percent of all U.S. Internet users watched online video.  

YouTube is, of course, the most watched video site by quite a stretch, with more than 12 billion videos watched. Fox Interactive Media (mostly MySpace) stands at No.2 with 439 million; Viacom Digital has 325 million and Yahoo next with 304 million. Microsoft had 296 million.

Hulu had 227 million videos viewed and maintained its highest position even though several commentators had expected Hulu’s boost would fade after the election. It’s also interesting because unlike YouTube, Hulu has managed to populate most of its mix of TV shows and old movies with advertising. This may be annoying to some online viewers but it is widely admired in the digital advertising world.

The slick site, owned by News Corp and NBC Universal, keeps winning friends and fans across the board. The New York TImes on Sunday, for instance, professed its love thus:

YouTube gets into online shopping

thriller-video.jpgYouTube, which has nailed the science of online video sharing, is now getting into online shopping by partnering with the likes of and iTunes.

The shop links will be just below the YouTube clips and will eventually sell a wide variety of items and merchandise related to the millions of clips on the site including: MP3s, TV shows, movies, concert tickets, books, maybe, even buy the designer sunglasses your favorite star is wearing in a clip. 

So soon you’ll be able to buy the Michael Jackson song playing in the background while watching the hilarious clip of Filipino prisoners doing their reenactment of the ’Thriller’ video. 

And now for an afternoon snack….

prisoner.jpgThere’s a little something for everybody in the media industry in Frank N. Magid Associates’ annual study of user/viewer/reader behavior. We got a look at some of the findings and took especial note of stats on online video usage, research sponsored by video sharing site Metacafe.

Boiled down, YouTube is still king of online video watching, according to nearly 2,000 web users aged 12 to 64 surveyed by Magid Associates. But as online video becomes a part of our daily routine, corroding wholesome activities like watching TV and going to the movies, there should be plenty more room for sites like rival Metacafe or slick Hulu.

Here’s some of the data on the overarching trends. Magid managing director Mike Vorhaus attributes them to a growing appetite for “snack-sized content.” Now try to make some money off it:

Online viewing won’t kill TV – CBS

copbaby.jpgNot hugely surprising, but CBS commissioned a study showing that watching full-length shows online won’t destroy television viewership, and it will attract a younger audience.

The study of 50,000 people, commissioned by the network and conducted by Magid Media Labs, polled viewers who have watched full episodes of CBS shows across the company’s partners in the CBS Audience Network.

The findings:

    Median age of online viewers: 38 35 percent of online watchers say they are now more likely to watch CBS on TV after finding shows online. About 46 percent say they only or mostly watch online. Half of respondents recalled the brand of an ad they saw during the online show. About 18 percent of those who remembered an ad that they saw during the online show said it played a role in their choosing to buy something. That number rose to 31 percent for consumer packaged goods.

In other words, TV networks have nothing to lose. The cable networks, which rely on affiliate fees from cable operators, on the other hand …

Cutting through the clutter at OPA’s Global Forum

The economy might be in trouble but advertisers and publishers at the Online Publisher Association’s Forum for the Future were still upbeat today about the prospects for online advertising.

“The first thing people need to do is to decaffeinate some of those expectations (about the economic outlook),” Rapt CEO Tom Chavez said during a State of Advertising panel discussion at the OPA’s meeting in London.

As more people move online, the market will grow despite economic doldrums. Carline Little, CEO of Washingtonpost.Newsweek Interactive conceded a “recession is going to hit any advertising-supported media but as people move online, we’ll see increases – but not as big as we saw four or five years ago. ”