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Why brands should follow Netflix’s customer first approach



We live in a world where endless technology is at our fingers tips. Gone are the days of dial up internet and the much hyped introduction of Channel Five. We now live in a world where waiting for entertainment just isn’t an option.

Streaming services are making it easier than ever to keep up to date with our favourite shows and films on demand; while digital downloads are allowing us to take them anywhere in the world. Forget VHS, we can now carry all 10 series of Friends in our back pocket. And it is the range of streaming services, such as Netflix and Amazon Prime, that makes this possible.

As a brand, Netflix has taken the world by storm. With a range of exclusive shows and content, it offers a well-rounded, customer-led service. The account has been continuously working hard to steal our attention away from traditional broadcasters and its 2017 figures show it is succeeding. Figures were reported as being at a record high, with the business being worth a staggering $100bn, with more than 104 million users across the globe.

As an active Netflix user it’s easy to see why viewers are flocking to the service. It has an abundance of exclusive shows which have been created using in-depth customer research. A simple way Netflix reviews its customer research is through ‘recommended’ algorithms. This process is started when new users create an account. They are asked to rate their personal viewing interests and by doing so, Netflix discovers its audience’s viewing preferences. The algorithms show patterns in the viewer’s preferences and viewing history, which are then used to see how they can develop their service, to make it more personal to the user. This audience-first approach is one which works for the service and helps it to provide relevant content that their viewers will love, even if they don’t know it yet.

Netflix has also steered clear of the traditional content delivery model, which usually sees a series released episode by episode, inviting the audience to build up an appetite for the show. Instead, Netflix releases a series all in one go. This allows viewers to binge watch, and become obsessed with their favourite shows. Binge-watching is a new concept; it’s not something we previously had the option to do. By giving us the option, Netflix has actually changed our viewing behaviour, setting the precedent for other providers to follow.

This year Netflix is set to increase its content budget to £5.9bn, which is a major leap from the £1.5bn spent in 2017. By spending so much money on its content, it’s evident Netflix is determined to keep increasing its portfolio of shows. The collected research from the recommended algorithms will all help towards Netflix’s audience-first content approach and will allow the streaming service to continue creating and adding unique material for its viewers.

Due to Netflix’s growing popularity, and other brands now harnessing this customer first approach, consumers are increasingly expecting a personalised service. But to do this brands need to take a leaf out of Netflix’s book and get to know their customers. This doesn’t have to involve fancy algorithms, but it does have to take centre stage of your business, if it doesn’t already. 

Tagged with: Creative Agency, Customer, Lifestyle, Manchester, Netflix, PR Agency Manchester, Research