Marketing & Advertising Magazine

The Long and Winding Road : Netflix Numpties!!!

Posted on the 09 June 2015 by Scotcombs @3rdplanetmedia


Netflix numpties!!!

I can scarcely believe it, I hear Netflix are planning to trial pre and post roll video ads. Not only can I not believe it but I am quite irritated at the step backwards which appears to be on the horizon.

Let’s look at this logically for a moment.

Over the past two editions of this blog I have commented on the shift from traditional TV viewing habits to the mobile on-demand digital space we increasingly inhabit when we view our programing. Netflix has played a major role in redefining how we watch TV and along with cable channels has re-invented the content options we enjoy today. This pragmatic understanding of where the technology might take us has actually been realised and we have embraced on-demand mobile viewing with open arms. By doing so we have, in effect, turned our collective backs on how traditional TV companies have been delivering our entertainment for so many years.

So far so good.

Despite this fresh and innovative approach to serving the customer there is still a significant dinosaur mentality within the industry. This makes some sense as many who are involved in digital on-demand programming have migrated from traditional spheres as times have changed.

By calling them ‘dinosaurs’ I might be a little inflammatory but it comes from the heart! Along with the idea that ‘bums on seats’ is everything, the same idea that SEO is all you need for your web presence, we have the prospect of old thinking dismantling the new order.

Just because you can have your advert running in front of millions of viewers every day does not mean that millions of viewers actually want to see the advert.

Have we learned nothing over the past few years?

Forcing people to watch things that they didn’t ask for as very much like being back at school in algebra class, we wonder what it is for and when it will mean anything to you personally.

It is the quickest way to disengage anyone in a hurry.

Below is a video explaining why ‘pre-roll’ video is so wonderful, bear in mind though , it is from the auto sales industry where it would be hard to find a group of more archaic thinkers if you tried!

So, here we have a cogent argument which tells us that you simply cannot fail. The only problem is that if the customer or viewer does not want to be told of these ‘deals’ all that has been achieved is alienation of the viewer. This concept you have just seem operates from the ‘numbers logic’ which pervades too many industries. The idea that you will convert a given percentage of viewers regardless of anything else inspires blanket coverage to the masses. What we actually know is that when you speak to self selecting, educated viewers the conversion rate is far higher. In the real world of car sales any salesman will tell you that for every ten people who walk through the door looking for a car, only one of those people actually purchases a vehicle. Actually, that is a pretty high conversion rate but by attempting to prime the footfall with blanket coverage to uninterested people will not and does not alter the percentage conversion. So why alienate people?

Netflix is apparently on the cusp of alienating all the people who have put them where they are today by worshipping at the ‘altar of numbers’, selling their viewer numbers to the highest bidder.

The apple never falls far from the tree!

see you on the long and winding road……… Patrick

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