A Complete Overview of the Marketing Strategy of Netflix
Netflix is a popular subscription-based streaming service and production company. It offers a wide variety of award-winning television shows, movies, anime, documentaries, etc. It streams on devices connected to the internet like smartphones, smart television, gaming consoles, set-top boxes, tablets, laptops, and personal computers. Netflix has revolutionized the entertainment industry and is now available in 190 countries. Its subscribers rose to 222 million, adding 18.2 million members in the last year alone. The reason behind this is the phenomenal marketing strategy of Netflix.
The Netflix Story
Reed Hastings and Marc Randolph, the founders of Netflix had an idea to rent DVDs by the mailing service. They came up with this idea while carpooling between their homes. They wanted to test this concept by mailing a compact disc to Hastings’ house in Santa Cruz. When it arrived safely, the idea for Netflix was born. It was the year 1997.
Netflix started by distributing DVDs directly to customers through a mailing service. The customer could select movies on the portal. The DVD would arrive in their mailboxes within one business day. It started as a pay-per-rent model. The customers could borrow DVDs and watch them from the comfort of their homes.
There was no need to worry about return shipping, late fees, etc. By the year 2000, Netflix had 300,000 subscribers and was well on its way to success. The early 2000s saw the internet boom. Netflix wanted to leverage this opportunity and move into an online platform. In 2007, it introduced online video streaming and video-on-demand services, making Netflix the most sought-after online video streaming company.
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The Success Story
Since the onset of the pandemic, people worldwide have been staying home all day long. It was a time when escapism was a favorite pass time. Netflix swooped right in, giving people a respite from drudgery. It has captivated the imagination of audiences around the world.
The number of paid subscribers has grown exponentially since and continues to do so. Netflix has disrupted the entertainment industry and kept its audiences hooked to their screens while generating billions of dollars in revenue.
What Is the Secret to Its Success?
- They pay more attention to customer needs and their satisfaction.
- They constantly raise the bar higher
- They value people over process
- Visionary thinking over efficiency
Business Model of Netflix
Netflix offers its popular subscription-based content for children and adults. It is advertisement-free. The plan starts from as low as INR 149/- going to INR 649/- for a premium plan. Their Subscription Video On Demand (SVOD) provides access to the latest movies, web series, documentaries, etc., streaming directly to your devices. What is the business model of Netflix? It has four key components:
- Netflix has developed strong partnerships worldwide with various Smart TV companies like LG, Sony, and Samsung.
- It caters to its gaming clientele by providing services over Wii, Xbox, and PlayStation.
- It has built alliances with television network companies.
- It has established connections with operating systems such as Apple, Microsoft, and Android to make streaming possible over mobile devices.
- It also joined forces with Google and Apple for promotions.
2. Value Proposition
Netflix has always aspired to build long-term customer delight by anticipating the needs of its customers and working towards fulfilling them.
The Following Ways Are Used to Achieve Them:
- Ad-free streaming of content 24*7 in high-definition from anywhere.
- Getting unlimited access to television shows and movies.
- Access all the latest and exclusive movies or shows and Netflix Originals at no extra cost.
- Access to movies in regional and local languages catering to a large audience.
- Recommendations for new movies or shows based on the customer’s viewing history. It is possible through their high-tech algorithms.
- The download feature allows users to enjoy movies or shows even without an internet connection.
- Having user profiles allows freedom for users to choose their preferences.
- Sharing account options provided by the movie platform allow users to share their accounts with friends and family.
- A policy of no commitments, cancel anytime.
3. Key Activities
- Grow its platform from a website service to applications on mobile and TV.
- Curates news and refreshing content through its Netflix Originals
- It partners with studios and production houses.
- Find innovative ways to attract and retain the current customer base.
- Maintain compliance with censor boards, specifically for minors.
- Support social causes like its commitment to address racism by shifting $100 million to financial institutions supporting Black communities in the USA.
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4. Customer Relationships
They have always maintained that customer obsession is better than customer focus. They do this by finding what delights customers through consumer science. They study relevant data, conduct surveys, and then test these ideas continuously to see what works.
Their Happy Customers Are the Result of the Following:
- A user-friendly interface that allows easy set-up options.
- Great customer service to resolve queries by providing email support, telephone, or live chat services.
- Customer acquisition happens through social media platforms like Instagram, Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, Snapchat, etc. They keep their audience informed about all the attractive offers, latest promotions, updates, new releases, etc.
- Gifting through Netflix. They offer gift cards to pay for the existing subscriptions or start new ones.
5. Revenue Streams
The annual revenue in 2021 was almost 30 billion US dollars. How does Netflix make money? It focuses on attracting customers.
- This is the major source of its revenue.
- Monthly subscription fees range from Mobile to Premium plans in India. Prices range from INR 149/- to INR 649/- per month.
- Netflix Original movies and shows are available only on the OTT platform.
- Key partnerships
- Its global presence has allowed it to build its customer base worldwide. So, it was vital for Netflix to establish a partnership with ISPs (Internet Service Providers). The streaming service could function seamlessly across the world.
- Another strategy implemented by it was its ability to build solid relations by networking with movie producers, filmmakers, writers, and animators to generate fresh content to attract customers.
It has always been the USP of Netflix. What makes Netflix immensely attractive to customers is its technology. A streaming service that works so well, giving customers the freedom to watch their favorite movies on their screens, is promising indeed. Through its powerful technology and other business strategies, Netflix has become an influential brand to be reckoned with, but it has also managed to stay at the top.
What sets them apart from their competitors is their marketing strategy. The marketing strategy of Netflix is both modern and powerful. In 2021, the marketing expenses amounted to 2.55 billion US dollars, and a big chunk of this was spent on advertising.
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Let Us Take a Look at the Marketing Strategy of Netflix:
Each time your mobile phone pings, it makes you eager to reach out to your phone, doesn’t it? That is the purpose of push notifications. The marketing strategy of Netflix focuses on getting the reader’s attention by appealing to their emotions. How? Netflix has leveraged its user data to create a push notification strategy that is highly customized.
It is a big part of the successful marketing strategy of Netflix. It alerts the users when new seasons of their favorite series are released. It bases these on the shows they are watching or any of their past choices. Sending tailored alerts that surprise, delight, or even shock the users builds the excitement, eventually compelling them to click on them.
Through its user-friendly push notification campaign, Netflix has cut right through its competition. Another way they do this is by providing a personalized interface. After watching a couple of shows or movies, the platform learns your preferences and points you to content you are likely to watch.
It saves users the hassle of spending hours browsing through the sections to find something they like and enhances the user experience. They offer customization even through their social media posts. They offer personalization even through their social media posts.
Guerrilla marketing is a way to create brand awareness by drawing attention using unconventional methods. This marketing strategy has worked beautifully for them in the past with the popular South Korean show – Squid Game. One of the most striking things about Squid Game is the doll in the “Red Light, Green Light” game. Netflix set up installations of this doll in various cities like LA, Sydney, Seoul, England, etc.
How Did Netflix Benefit From the Squid Game Marketing Campaign?
This marketing strategy of Netflix using a guerrilla campaign increased the show’s popularity and helped increase its customer base by over 4 million subscribers in the third quarter of 2021.
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Effective Use of Social Media
Netflix uses the potential of social media to keep its movies and shows at the forefront of pop-culture conversation. Thanks to the creative marketing strategy of Netflix through social media, people are encouraged to talk about Netflix, engage with their posts by posting comments, answer their questions, take part in their polls, share posts, etc
Social media and brand content are ways that Netflix keeps viewers informed about new programs, builds excitement, and boosts viewership. They create posts that make good of the current trends to create a buzz. They induce a good dose of quirkiness, humor, and intrigue in all their campaigns.
The brand has an active presence on social media platforms with about 75 profiles spread across Facebook, Instagram, YouTube, Twitter, and LinkedIn. On Instagram, Netflix currently has 29.7 million US subscribers and 6.5 million Indian subscribers. Netflix uses a very straightforward approach while posting.
The captions are short and crisp, and most posts do not feature any hashtags. Other than images, they use gifs, polls, ask questions, edit short clips, BTS, etc. With a combination of loyal following and intriguing posts, it is no wonder that many of their campaigns instantly go viral.
Another eye-catching example of a marketing strategy of Netflix is meme marketing. This strategy integrates popular memes into their posts to promote brand strategy. It is a fun way of connecting with the audience. The engagement rates are terrific, and memes make for highly shareable content. Once they connect with the audience, they go viral. It directly affects the popularity of the OTT platforms and garners new subscribers.
The marketing team of Netflix understands the pulse of the audience. They stay current by embracing the latest trends. They utilize the ongoing events to promote their platform. When ‘Friends Reunion’ was announced, Netflix used it as an opportunity to promote their platform and attract audiences- loyal fans and new viewers.
Netflix shared IGTVs, Friends-themed reels, and posts. The marketing strategy of Netflix was to leverage the show’s large fan following to increase its viewership. The hype surrounding the reunion helped Netflix immensely.
Search Engine Optimisation (SEO)
Netflix has a Domain Authority of 93! It shows that they have a strong SEO strategy. SEO is a vital parameter of the Marketing Strategy of Netflix. They use phrases like “watch movies”, “watch online”, “tv online”, etc., which seem simple that help them rank higher.
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They use header tags which improve readability and boost the page rankings. They adopt the best practices in on-page and off-page optimization. The content is revitalized regularly based on analytics.
Netflix defined how streaming platforms use email marketing to gain and retain subscribers. Though Netflix has expanded its customer base phenomenally through other marketing strategies, they are still committed to email marketing because they believe email marketing is relevant.
No, they don’t do boring and unimaginative email campaigns. The email marketing strategy of Netflix is based on personalization (again!) Netflix uses data they have about your viewing preferences to craft personal emails. Viewers are assigned personas based on their viewing history.
They keep track of the completion rate (the percentage of a show or movie that you’ve viewed) of every movie and every show watched by every user connected to an account. That is the level of hyper-personalization that Netflix offers.
Recently, Netflix India curated a campaign in Mumbai, India, for the movie Red Notice starring Ryan Reynolds, Gal Gadot, and Dwayne Johnson. It is a heist movie. To promote this movie in India, Netflix came up with a unique idea. They wanted people to experience the thrill of a heist, for which they created a pop-up shop called the “Red Notice Shop”.
They filled the store with fancy and delectable items, including the gold Faberge eggs with rewards inside. People can steal them if they can escape without getting caught. The Red Notice Shop became the most participated event. With over 100,000 people participating in it, it quickly became a sensation. It was covered by Indian and international media publications.
This campaign even won an award at Spikes Asia. It left an indelible impression in the minds of people. Both the movie and Netflix benefitted from this. So, discussed here are some of the incredible marketing strategies used by Netflix that have established it as the leader in its industry.
Frequently Asked Question
1. Why is Netflix winning in Digital Marketing?
The digital marketing strategy of Netflix follows a very creative process. They post on social media regularly. Snippets from their movies or shows, famous memes, etc., are integrated into posts that make them memorable, quirky, and shareable. It ensures that the engagement rate is high. People are encouraged to comment on their posts, answer their questions, participate in their polls, share posts, etc. They also do clever email marketing.
2. Why is Netflix attractive to customers?
It is because Netflix puts a customer-centric focus. Netflix keeps viewers informed about new programs, builds excitement, and boosts viewership. A few reasons why Netflix is so attractive is that it offers personalization at every level. It has a simple, clean and intuitive user interface. Its ad-free, high-quality content is available 24*7. The recommendation feature takes out the decision fatigue. It gives access to Netflix Original movies and shows. Its download feature allows you to watch all your favorite movies or shows without an internet connection. Their no-questions-asked cancellation policy allows you to cancel the subscription at any time.
3. What marketing channels does Netflix use?
Netflix uses the power of social media not just to promote its content but to engage audiences. It works on many different levels. Through their posts, they can create a buzz around the current trend. They have a large fan following on all their social media accounts. They are present on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, YouTube, LinkedIn, and Snapchat. They integrate memes into their posts, share funny gifs, create polls, and ask questions that stimulate a response.
4. Does Netflix have any partnerships?
According to Partnerbase, Netflix has134 partners. It has 14 channel partners and various technology partners. Its biggest partners in this ecosystem include Megaport, Xoxoday, and Roku. It has also successfully partnered with Smart television companies like LG, Sony, and Samsung.
Netflix has carved its niche in the streaming service and continues to outdo itself. The success of the marketing strategy of Netflix lies not in what they do, but rather in how they do it. Netflix has developed a deep understanding of its audience by embracing consumer science. They create marketing strategies based on consumer insights and learnings. It helps them delight customers in ways that not only increase their margins significantly but are hard to copy. Netflix constantly adheres to a culture of innovation and reinvention. An unconventional approach, a desire to reinvent itself, and customer obsession are the key reasons Netflix is so successful today.