News of the streaming giant’s strategy shift toward a whole-brand offer reflects how commercial realities are colliding with the creative bar Netflix has set – casualties are expected.
This is according to a Hollywood Reporter story in which insiders say Netflix expects to move its marketing efforts away from purely activating individual shows or films on the platform, and dedicating more of that creative space to selling Netflix as a whole.
Much of the coverage leads with the 15 people expected to lose their jobs as a result of the shift, which, though small relative to the nearly 7000 total employees, will be swiftly acquainted with the company’s notoriously libertarian HR policy, which saw its author fired once their purpose had been served.
New CMO Jackie Lee-Joe is looking to structure the marketing team to make the company’s $1.8 billion (2018 figures) work more effectively – a problem for most marketers for which there are about as many solutions.
While Netflix has brushed off fears that the much-vaunted streaming wars are beginning to put pressure on the company’s US subscriber base, analysts are predicting heavy losses as subscription fatigue sets in amid Disney and Apple’s market entry.
The big problem is that matching the competition will require the company’s content (and marketing) budget to grow in order to bring in new subscribers. Though international growth is as yet strong, at 20%, North American markets are slowing rapidly – with just 550,000 new subscribers added in Q4 2019.
As Motley Fool observes, one of Netflix’s challenges is that its IP is mostly fresh, meaning that it must spend heavily to create a buzz around new shows. Meanwhile, Disney’s fewer but more recognisable shows receive a lot of organic coverage.
While some of the high-profile creatives on the platform may disparage the greater focus on marketing the service beyond the individual features, it’s better to be making movies for a sustainable company.
Sourced from the Hollywood Reporter, Harvard Business Review, FT, Motley Fool