Crackle Connex ad platform reaches 80M monthly active users

Chicken Soup for the Soul Entertainment took to the IAB NewFronts stage Wednesday to tout the reach and ease of buying with its recently launched Crackle Connex ad sales platform.

Crackle Connex debuted roughly just a month ago, and now already reaches over 80 million monthly active users (MAU). The platform was created to make campaign integration and ad buying easier and more seamless across a variety of ad-supported streaming platforms (including its own Crackle, Redbox, and Chicken Soup for the Soul AVODs and FASTs), as well its Red Box DVD and Blu-Ray rental kiosks, digital out-of-home advertising and through custom branded content. 

On stage, Philippe Guelton, CRO of CSSE, pointed to the 2022 acquisition of RedBox, the launch of a Chicken Soup for the Soul AVOD app and FAST channel last year, the addition of millions of Crackle and Redbox buttons on Vizio TV remotes, as well as a growing audience extension program as helping to drive the MAU increases, which represents 100% growth over the last 12 months.

“We’re here to make connections. To connect your clients, to connect your brands, to connect your products with premium content,” Guelton said during the NewFronts presentation. “And then to connect that premium content with consumers who will eventually buy these products and services.”

During the presentation execs also acknowledged that with the incredibly fragmented streaming landscape it’s often easier and more efficient for ad buyers to purchase only the biggest players – hence the value prop for Crackle Connex which offers an ad-scale portfolio that combines multiple smaller premium AVOD and FAST services together with one sales network and one sales team.

In addition to Crackle, Redbox and Chicken Soup for the Soul, Crackle Connex touts numerous premium partners and has grown its audience extension program with over 20 third-party ad-supported partners including Crunchyroll, Funimation, Vidgo, Cinedigm, Gusto TV, Tastemade and Frndly TV.

“When we formed Crackle Connex only a month ago, we designed it so brands could seamlessly integrate their campaigns across AVOD, FAST, kiosks, digital out-of-home, and through branded content,” said Guelton in a statement. “The response has been tremendous – as we provide one of the most unique entry points for advertisers. We will have even more announcements in the coming weeks.”

In its aim to simplify video advertising buying across platforms, Crackle Connex announced several data and technology partnerships including the introduction of interactive video ads later this year through Amazon Publisher Direct, which will be available to Amazon DSP advertisers. The ads will be able to connect viewers directly to a purchase action via their voice or remote control with commands such as “Add to Cart,” “Buy this,” or “Add to List” without disrupting the viewing experience.  

On the custom content front, Crackle Connex allows a brand to own a series, segment or create their own content that has messaging woven into the storyline. On Wednesday it disclosed greenlighting two new original series, including “At Home,” with Genevieve Gorder, and “Just for Kicks,” a series focused on the hottest new sneaker drops and collectors that pursue them, along with renewal of several additional projects.

CSSE’s Michele Fino, head of branded entertainment, noted that Crackle goes beyond the investment side of things for original content with a focus on ROAS (return on ad spend) with third-party measurement partners such as Upwave. It also taps partners Experian, InMarket,, LiveRamp, Transunion and Nielsen Catalina for data and measurement capabilities.  

Crackle Connex also leverages its network 32,000 Redbox kiosks across major retailers (plus an additional 20,000 screens through partners), which not only helps bring consumers into the Redbox experience but offers digital-out-of-home display ad opportunities at points of purchase.  For more on CSSE’s efforts on the DOOH front, check out an interview with Crackle’s Philippe Guelton here.