One of the main benefits of Netflix is being able to watch your favorite shows uninterrupted by ads. While this is great for consumers, Netflix is clearly missing out on the potential revenue that other platforms can benefit from like Hulu. Despite 158 million global subscribers, Netflix is in a whopping 12 billion dollars in debt. Not only that, being able to compete in the digital market is becoming more and more difficult as new networks launch their own streaming platforms. Because of this, Netflix has looked to a different strategy to make more money.
As Netflix resists commercials, they are finding new ways to work with brands to promote their shows. Last month, Netflix worked with Subway, a sandwich fast food chain, to serve Green Eggs and Ham sub (spinach-dyed eggs, sliced ham, guacamole, cheese) to promote their new show Green Eggs and Ham based off the book by Dr. Seuss. Earlier in the summer, Netflix converted a Baskin’ Robins into a Scoops Ahoy to promote season 3 of Stranger Things. By integrating these shows into shops Netflix hopes to get more people to subscribe to the service. “We believe we will have a more valuable business in the long term,” Netflix said, “by staying out of competing for ad revenue and instead entirely focusing on competing for viewer satisfaction.”
According to reports Netflix has been actively beefing up their marketing department and becoming more flexible with the other brands they work with. Even though this seems like a great idea, I find this counterproductive to Netflix’s problem. While I think this is a genius marketing tool to get people excited about the shows, the bottom line is that Netflix is in debt by a lot of money, and until they know for sure t’s increasing subscriber counts, this almost seems like gimmicks. I feel as though product placement could be a lot more sustainable because the bottom line is Netflix needs money and marketing will only get you so far.