It’s been nearly 21 years since Reed Hastings and Marc Randolph founded Netflix. In that time, their company has evolved from a DVD rental service to one of the most popular streaming services in the world, with nearly 118 million customers.
Behind that meteoric rise? A willingness to evolve — and some smart marketing moves, says Matt Byrom, managing director of Wyzowl, a UK-based video production and content marketing agency. Here are three Netflix tactics he recommends you steal:
1 Balance Your Content.
When Netflix first began streaming videos, it was essentially a content curation company, presenting TV shows and movies it had licensed from other companies.
“Curating amazing content is a great way to attract more people to your site, especially through social media,” Byrom said. “Social media channels are all about sharing — so by posting valuable content […], even if it’s not your own, you’ll present your company as a great brand to follow.”
That said, to stand out from the crowd, you need to create your own content as well, he said — “and it needs to be good,” Byrom said. Exclusive shows like “House of Cards,” “Orange is the New Black” and “Stranger Things” have only heightened Netflix’s popularity.
In search of second-party material to share? Check out Flower Factor: a lifestyle blog from aboutflowers.com, Brides and Pantone.
For original content, consider behind-the-scenes photos from the design room and wedding setup, how-to videos with a designer, excerpts from customer reviews, posts about trends and care and handling tips.
2 Remove Pain Points.
It’s exceptionally easy to unintentionally spend a night (or weekend) binge-watching a T.V. show on Netflix. Why? “Because it’s right in front of you,” Byrom said. “Most series are released on a weekly basis, episode by episode, but Netflix decided to give their customers the opportunity to watch shows at a pace that suits them.”
Additionally, Netflix is set up so customers can watch it on practically any device: smart TVs, media players, gaming consoles, Blu-ray players, tablets, smartphones, PCs and laptops. “Netflix understands the vital importance of responsive design, and so should you,” Byrom said, citing that 60 percent of all Internet use is on mobile devices and 40 percent of people will choose a different search result if the first is not mobile friendly.
3 Embrace Personalization.
Netflix customizes its product to each customer. Users can rate what they’ve watched to get suggestions for shows and movies to watch next, which appear in the “Top Picks” section.
“Customers love to be treated as individuals,” Byrom said. “It shows that your company cares enough to take an interest in them.”
Email marketing is a great way to use personalization. Most email marketing platforms include a setting that allows you to address email subscribers by name. You can also insert survey questions, asking customers what products or services they bought from you. Furthermore, you can use information like age, gender, order history and ZIP code to create segmented email campaigns that align with what customers really want.