Netflix didn’t market “Bird Box” the way a big entertainment company normally would by spending boatloads on billboards, TV commercials and YouTube. Instead, Netflix gave the film pride of place on its homepage for more than a week – and that’s a potential lesson for OTT device operators, like Amazon and Roku, or for TV-streaming services, such as AT&T’s DirecTV Now, Hulu Live and Sling TV. Viewers can be effectively influenced or directed to content when they turn on a streaming service.
Improved visibility into Netflix could also help inform news and entertainment partners as they set new licensing agreements. Netflix recently reupped its deal with AT&T’s WarnerMedia for rights to the TV show “Friends,” agreeing to pay $100 million in 2019, up from $30 million last year.
Producing a hit Netflix show can be lucrative, but because Netflix doesn’t usually disclose ratings, that makes it hard for even TV classics to understand their actual value. For instance, “Friends” is Netflix’s second most popular show, accounting for 4% of all views, according to data from Jumpshot, an analytics business that bases its Netflix ratings on a panel and only tracks audiences to the Netflix web site.
Jumpshot’s panel is smaller and more limited than Nielsen’s SVOD ratings, and neither will overlap exactly with Netflix’s internal results. But the value of the show “Friends” to Netflix didn’t triple from last year to now, which means WarnerMedia most likely had better data to work with.