HitBliss: Netflix, iTunes, and Amazon’s new rival?

I remember the first time I heard about Jebbit. My roommate, Desiree, came running into our room saying “Eva, I found the solution to my spending problems! I am going to make money every day by just sitting and answering questions about the content of advertisements.” We were impressed and excited! We had found a part-time job that we could do from our beds, did not require us to think much, and would pay us an average of $19 per hour. Desiree and I were clearly Jebbit’s target: college students with constrained spending and plenty of free time, who might do anything to earn a little extra cash.

Similar to Jebbit’s business model and target audience is HitBliss’. It is an online website that will also pay you to watch ads. Nevertheless, what is different from Jebbit is that this cash is not given to you directly, but added to your account so that you use it to pay for TV shows and movies on their platform. How cool is that? As soon as I heard about it I went to Desiree and gave her the news so she could start saving on her Netflix’s monthly fee.

How does HitBliss work? HitBliss is a downloadable application currently only available for desktop computers or laptops. After you create your account, you are asked several questions like age, gender, location, income, etc. You are also asked to share personal information like web and search history, activity on retail sites, and viewing history on HitBliss. The more information you provide, the higher rate of earnings you have. Similar to the data-mining model I explained on my previous blog post, this information is used to tailor the ads that will appear on your screen just so you are shown brands HitBliss thinks you are interested in. This is not only helpful for HitBliss to get you more engaged with the ads. It is also extremely beneficial for the advertisers to know they are reaching the right demographics.

warnAfter you provide all this information, you will be able to click on the “Earn” tab and start watching ads. You will have a queue of advertisements and you can skip whichever you do not like. Each ad has a different value of cash reward. The point is that you watch ads until you have enough money to watch you favorite TV show or movie. If you do not have enough cash rewards, you can always opt to pay by credit card.

How does HitBliss make sure you are actually watching the ad and not playing with your cellphone or going through other web pages at the same time? Jebbit does this by asking several questions about the advertisment’s content after you see it. Differently, with its application, HitBliss is able to make sure you are watching the ads by tracking your screen activity.  With this, Hitbliss is able to stop the ad and stop the cash earning if the user switches to another window or lowers the volume.  Additionally, when the ad is playing, the application pops up a face that asks if you are still there. If the user fails to answer in few seconds, the cash spendpayment is not given to you.

Is HitBliss a possible threat to NetflixiTunes, and Amazon? Well, relating this question to what we have learned in class, we know that HitBliss does not have the first-mover advantage. Users already love Netflix, iTunes, and Amazon and these are also giants in this industry. Nevertheless, HitBliss clearly has the second-mover advantage. It can use Netflix’s example of scale and selection, data for recommendation, and the disruptive revenue model to improve its business. Personally, I would say that HitBliss has an even greater weapon: customer data. Customers purposely share their tastes and online searches when they open their HitBliss accounts. Thus, HitBliss does not have to guess on what customers will like just like Netflix does, they actually know it. Furthermore, HitBliss offers TV on demand, something that has been a struggle for Netflix. What do you think? Could this company become a giant too?

hitblissSome might say that not everybody is in a budget constraint and will like to spend some time watching advertisements in exchange of cash. Some people value their time more than what these ads can pay. Nevertheless, remember that HitBliss also has the option to pay for it from your own money, just like you do in iTunes and in Amazon Instant Video. Personally, the biggest barrier I see for HitBliss is finding the way to go mobile because I do not believe iTunes will go easy on its new competitor.

Whether it will be successful or not, HitBliss, just like Jebbit, has made the relationship between consumers and advertisers friendlier. Just as Seth Fiegerman stated, “HitBliss is trying to create a more symbiotic relationship between consumers and advertisers that benefits both parties.” We all hate to watch the ads before a YouTube video. This could be a possible solution! I am definitely looking forward to see how people will react to this new business idea and whether other companies will try to implement it too.

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13 thoughts on “HitBliss: Netflix, iTunes, and Amazon’s new rival?

  1. This is a great blog post and shows just how far advertising has come with all the improvements in technology. It is so much easier now to advertise to people through the internet and their mobile devices than it was when companies would advertise using billboards or newpaper ads. This concept that Hitbliss has as you described is really an ingenious one. My only question is how are they able to stream more content online than Netflix. Being the established giant that Netflix is, I would think it would be easier for them to dole out some large sums of money to get quality videos streaming online rather than a lesser known startup like Hitbliss. After reading your post I am very much tempted to create a Hitbliss account and try it for myself because the concept seems very appealing. We’ll just have to wait and see if Hitbliss can really catch fire. Good job with the blog post I really enjoyed reading it and I thought the use of pictures was very nice.

  2. Great blog post. I found it easy to read, fun, informative, and personable, I liked how the pictures were embedded into the text and that you showed some personality. I have always been curious about Jebbit and wonder how many people actually sit down and watch advertisements. It definitely has it’s draws and I think the ability to earn movie or music credits is appealing as there is an instant reward almost or a goal to reach. I question how quickly this will catch on if it does and how long it will last before someone thinks of another way to advertise. I also wonder if people are more apt to just pay a flat fee for Netflix because it is easier to pay ahead and then you don’t have the inconvenience of watching the ads.Thanks for the post!

  3. This was a very interesting article on another unique company that is trying to rival such high profile companies such as Netflix and iTunes. If you look back at the past, not every attempt to beat out blockbuster and other companies worked. Many failed, but eventually, they were surpassed by successful ideas, like that of Netflix. I really like the idea that Jebbit and this new company HitBliss have of connecting advertisers and customers by rewarding them with either money or television and movies. In the long run though, I do not think either of these companies have enough power to beat out the Big Boys.

  4. This is a very interesting blog post. Personally, I am intrigued by the rewards that watching advertisements on Hitbliss offers, but I am unsure if I would actually want to sit down and watch adds until I earn enough credit. I think Hitbliss has the potential to grow among the consumers who are low on cash and looking for entertainment. I understand that Hitbliss offers you to pay for your movies and shows, but I think the value of the price and quantity of movies and shows with Netflix is most likely a better deal. Because of this, I do not see Hitbliss becoming popular with people who are not low on money. Since they will have difficulties acquiring the kinds of consumers who prefer to just pay for their movies, I do not anticipate Hitbliss becoming one of the giants.

  5. Interesting blog post. I am conflicted about whether this is a good idea or not. I think I would need more information such as how many ads I would have to watch in order to stream a video to see if they site is actually worth watching or not. I am currently a Jebbit user, and I do see your connection between the two, but I believe that Jebbit is a much better incentives program because it offers real cash. I am not sure if many people would use HitBliss because there are many alternatives such as Netflix, Hulu, and now many tv networks are offering online streams for most of their tv shows. The latter two also use ads, but at least people can surf the web instead of actually having to pay attention to the commercial. People who don’t have that much money will probably resort to streaming a movie from an illegal site and sacrifice streaming quality. In theory, HitBliss seems like a really good idea and I think it really depends on how time-consuming gaining points will be. I think it took me all semester to earn a measly 20 dollars so if it is too difficult to make money to use for DVDs, I don’t think there is enough incentive to use it.

  6. fantastic blog post i know that after the portico presentation during the Monday night session last year i left very interested in Jebbit as well. unfortunately i did not take advantage of that opportunity but I’m glad to see that some students did and was very interested to see how they liked it. This new business model of letting customers gain money or credits through watching videos is very interesting. you did a great job embedding links within your post as well as including pictures. I thought this post was incredibly informative and posted an incredibly interesting topic. Great work

  7. I really liked how your blog posts started by drawing comparisons between Jebbit, a company most BC students are familiar with, and HitBliss. I think both companies present a very interesting and successful business strategy. Even though I am not intrigued by the idea of watching adds for extra cash, I think their are many people willing to participate in this industry. I think their target consumer group is too narrow: “college students with constrained spending and plenty of free time, who might do anything to earn a little extra cash”. Even though the college student population is always renewing, I believe HitBliss should also attempt to target parents becuase they are the ones paying the bills for service like Netflix. Overall, I think you did a great job explaining the HitBliss process, advantages and disadvantages. However, I was confused about why HitBliss is a threat to companies like Netflix, iTunes, and Amazon. From your description I thought HitBliss worked in conjunction with your accounts at these companies not against them.

  8. I thought this was a very interesting and the subject was cool. HitBliss seems like a good idea and something I might be interested in trying. It is very advantageous for companies that want to effectively advertise since HitBliss forces you to watch the ads, and not just go to another window. But this could be a dealbreaker for some users who do not want to sit through ad after ad. I feel like this idea is one that many will try at first and then get bored of quickly after watching a certain amount of ads. As Taylor said in the comment above I also was confused about how they would be a threat to Netflix, Itunes, and Amazon. I like how you used pictures from actual HitBliss advertisements and the way you integrated them into the blog post. Overall a great post and you explained the possible advantages and disadvantages of HitBliss well.

  9. This was a very interesting blog post and very well done. I had no idea what HitBliss was before reading this post and you did a very good job explaining it. The comparison to Jebbit was particularly helpful for me. The concept behind HitBliss seems like a good idea, but I do not think that it can compete successfully against a company like Netflix. The benefit of Netflix is that a person can watch whatever they want and as many different movies or shows as they want for the same monthly fee. With HitBliss, it seems like I would have to watch some ads, then watch my movie or show. If I wanted to watch another movie or show, I would have to go watch more ads. For me, I would rather just pay the Netflix fee and watch as many movies or shows as I want without worrying about watching more ads. I’m also not sure how the pricing works. If each ad was enough for a movie I don’t think it would be that bad. But, if the pricing is like Jebbit where every answer is worth only a little bit of money for each answer and a movie costs $5.00, it might not be worth all of the effort.

  10. This was a particularly well done blog. I was impressed with your level of knowledge about the subject and the connections you made to class material. I was especially interested to hear how HitBliss monitors screen activity to make sure that the individual is watching the advertisement. I could not believe that HitBliss can even tell if you lower the volume on your computer! You made a very good point that HitBliss’ advantage is their large amount of data on consumers. I think this data well help them moving forward.

  11. I have to be honest, the first thing I did when I read this post was go sign up for Jebbit. Then, I went and signed up for HitBliss. Both of these companies seemed to have employed a new business model, using their members to help gain advertising information in exchange for credit towards things on the website. I thought the blog was very well organized and informative, as well as persuasive. However, I’m not sure that HitBliss can compete with Netflix. Netflix is allows you to watch movies instantly and there is no wait time, which tends to frustrate people, while HitBliss has you earn credit through watching advertisements and answering questions about them. For college students who don’t have a disposable income, HitBliss has the potential to be a huge success, but for the older customer with employment and less available time, Netflix will probably remain the top option.

  12. This is a great blog post! I had never heard of HitBliss before and your post was very informative. You also did a great job in tying in some key topics seen in class. I agree with you, it has a wealth of data that it will be able to use to its advantage to promote different ads that fit the customers. Additionally, the ways that the website tracks whether or not you are actually watching the ad is, I think, pretty clever. I think the relationship between consumers and advertisers is an important one, but I also think it is changing because this is becoming an increasingly consumer-driven world. I think a program like this, like you say, is a possible solution. Thanks for sharing!

  13. I’m actually a part of the Jebbit team so it’s awesome to hear that you love using the site! It’s amazing how far advertising has come. In a sense, the internet has completely changed the marketing world and it’s very exciting for me, someone who believes she wants to concentrate in marketing. The internet has made advertising much more interactive as well as created easy feedback in the way that data can be collected about how successful a campaign is or is not. Once again, love that you and your friends love Jebbit!

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