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Old January 30 2013, 02:15 PM   #31
lurok
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Re: House of Cards (Netflix)

Looking forward to this as love political drama and Spacey. Feels like he hasn't been in anything in ages. Seen a couple of these ads round town. He's like an adopted national treasure here



Aren't Netflix also doing this prison drama Orange Is The New Black? Mulgrew's in it, and Jodie Foster has directed one ep.
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Old January 30 2013, 03:16 PM   #32
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Re: House of Cards (Netflix)

cylkoth wrote: View Post
I've always felt that the best thing for them to do was-as mentioned in the article, release the episodes in 4 episode volumes. It gives you something to crow about, it can drive interviews for cast in the media each month...once an outlet covers the show the month it premieres, there's no further reason to go back. With volume releases, guest actors can be chatted up over upcoming appearances.
I feel the same. I think the press you would get from releasing 4 episodes per month would grant a similar effect that the television networks get currently. You could parade your stars on Leno/Letterman/Jimmy/Conan just like the networks do. Its essentially like DVR except you don't ever have to hit record. I don't know how long it will take me to watch Cards, but it'll certainly take me less than the 9 months it takes to watch 26 episodes of a traditional show.

Along those same lines, I wouldn't be surprised if Netflix starts releasing other types of original content, not just mini-series. What about signing popular vloggers? Create "talk shows" with new episodes released daily, for you to watch at your leisure. Compete with Leno/Letterman/Jimmy/Conan. Maybe start adding sports, or news.

Give people a reason to sign up for streaming and keep it (I do, but I know there are those who will keep it one month, cancel it, then a few months later get another month in).
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Old January 30 2013, 06:44 PM   #33
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Re: House of Cards (Netflix)

And I'll agree that Netflix's strategy of releasing the entire season of an original production is a mistake, but not for the hysterical reasoning offered in that piece. Netflix is denying itself the tremendous promotional bonanza that having an original series delivers. I've always felt that the best thing for them to do was-as mentioned in the article, release the episodes in 4 episode volumes. It gives you something to crow about, it can drive interviews for cast in the media each month...once an outlet covers the show the month it premieres, there's no further reason to go back. With volume releases, guest actors can be chatted up over upcoming appearances.
For whatever reason, I haven't been seeing a whole lot of pre-release publicity for this series, but there's no reason they need to schedule the marketing to stop when the series is released. A new release format will require evolution with their marketing strategy, for instance, more effort on promoting word of mouth after the series launches.

The usual approach of spend-the-whole-budget-before-launch is driven by the fact that, that's the only shot you'll get. But now you don't need to worry about the show being cancelled or pulled for low ratings/box office, the marketing could be done as a slow build, or some other approach.

The other big change in marketing is targetting, so that everyone knows much more specifically who to advertise/promote the series to. This means that if you're not part of that specific target, you may see nothing. Kevin Spacey going on Letterman is the old type of mass media marketing, that reaches a lot of people who wouldn't be interested in the series.

The new approach might be online advertising and social media campaigns at targetted audiences - fans of the actors, fans of Fincher, fans of other political dramas. For instance, I've been seeing ads for the series on Deadline, because one audience they want to reach is people in the entertainment industry (which I'm not, but they don't know that.)

Thanks for telling me about Chosen, I'll check it out.

I thought in the US you had Amazon Instant and Hulu plus as well as Netflix on subscription, not to mention iTunes, PlayStation Store and Xbox Live for other paid on demand content?
So far, only Netflix is producing exclusive content that interests me. If I want something from iTunes or Amazon Prime, I could just buy it without needing any subscription. I also get Crackle (free? i guess I'll find out) but until right now, I've never found anything worthwhile there.

Maybe start adding sports, or news
Obscure sports maybe but the costs for popular sports like football are going through the roof. The way sports are driving cable costs up is a major reason why I dumped my cable subscription, it's only going to get worse.

Netflix stands to gain greatly from people like me, who are looking for a cheaper alternative and can do without sports entirely. Netflix is the a la carte option everyone wants. As for news, there's so much on the internet already, what angle could they take to compete?

Aren't Netflix also doing this prison drama Orange Is The New Black? Mulgrew's in it, and Jodie Foster has directed
And a horror series from Eli Roth and let's not forget Arrested Development! Here's a story on their plans.

"The goal is to become HBO faster than HBO can become us." Great quote!

Last edited by Temis the Vorta; January 30 2013 at 07:10 PM.
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Old January 30 2013, 09:14 PM   #34
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Re: House of Cards (Netflix)

I guess I'd rather see them dump the whole series at once. If all the other stuff they have isn't enough to get subscribers to stay, then it wasn't worth the show in the first place.

And maybe I'm underestimating the time it takes to get a show moving, but it seems to me like Netflix has certainly taken their sweet time in getting original content made. Even something like someone above said, about getting vbloggers and such to do shows would get some sort of audience.
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Old January 30 2013, 09:51 PM   #35
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Re: House of Cards (Netflix)

Temis the Vorta wrote: View Post
And I'll agree that Netflix's strategy of releasing the entire season of an original production is a mistake, but not for the hysterical reasoning offered in that piece. Netflix is denying itself the tremendous promotional bonanza that having an original series delivers. I've always felt that the best thing for them to do was-as mentioned in the article, release the episodes in 4 episode volumes. It gives you something to crow about, it can drive interviews for cast in the media each month...once an outlet covers the show the month it premieres, there's no further reason to go back. With volume releases, guest actors can be chatted up over upcoming appearances.
For whatever reason, I haven't been seeing a whole lot of pre-release publicity for this series, but there's no reason they need to schedule the marketing to stop when the series is released.
I was thinking more on the media's drive for follow up interviews, rather than Netflix stopping promotion after Feb 1. If I'm an entertainment news editor, and I cover the show this month, what incentive do I have to greenlight additional coverage? You cover the Lead actors, supporting actors, guest stars, then, that's it. A genre show, you add in features about the special effects... merchandising, tie ins. For a weekly release, that gives you nice presence while it's hot. But putting the entire thing out at once, unlike a theatrical film, will the media feel that urge to continue normal patterns of coverage.





I also get Crackle (free? i guess I'll find out) but until right now, I've never found anything worthwhile there.
Yes, Crackle is free, and can be watched on the pc, with apps on the PS3, Xbox, plus Android.
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Old January 30 2013, 10:44 PM   #36
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Re: House of Cards (Netflix)

If I'm an entertainment news editor, and I cover the show this month, what incentive do I have to greenlight additional coverage?
If the audience demands it (it gets good ratings) they'll cover it. But don't forget that the likes of Letterman et al are owned by megacorps who like to use talk shows as ways of promoting their own content. Netflix is still regarded as the enemy by many of those corporations, and that could inhibit them helping out with Netflix publicity. I'm thinking websites are a better way of spreading the word. Googling "netflix house cards" turns up a lot of stuff, so Netflix's PR dept has not been slacking.

Anyway, most of the publicity and advertising for any new series on broadcast or cable will hit just before the premiere, and then taper way off. At that point, it's sink or swim time. For a big hit show, there will be a new round of PR/advertising for each season premiere, but that's the same as with House of Cards. I'm sure S2 will have another promotional push when it's ready (assuming it's a hit, that is.)

Whatever PR value there is in doling out episodes isn't likely to be greater than the PR value of having a whole new system of episode delivery, which is what a lot of the articles are talking about. That alone is getting them a lot of exposure. Netflix will get a lot of data from users on exactly how they are consuming the episodes. If it turns out they don't binge-view after all, then Netflix can adjust their delivery style, but first they need to do this test.
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Old January 30 2013, 11:20 PM   #37
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Re: House of Cards (Netflix)

Temis the Vorta wrote: View Post
The other big change in marketing is targetting, so that everyone knows much more specifically who to advertise/promote the series to. This means that if you're not part of that specific target, you may see nothing. Kevin Spacey going on Letterman is the old type of mass media marketing, that reaches a lot of people who wouldn't be interested in the series.
See, that's exclusionary. In order to make the most money, you need to have a broad spectrum advertising plan. If you target only those who already have Netflix, you gain nothing. If you target people who don't have Netflix, but may be Kevin Spacey fans or people interested in political thrillers, they will sign up for Netflix for the show, and then stick around for the other content available. Voila, new customer. People don't know they're not interested until they know it exists in the first place.

Temis the Vorta wrote: View Post
Obscure sports maybe but the costs for popular sports like football are going through the roof. The way sports are driving cable costs up is a major reason why I dumped my cable subscription, it's only going to get worse.
One of the things Netflix has going for it is that it is on demand. Sports don't have to be live; ESPN3 has already tapped the market of watching replays of previously played sports matches. NFL Network plays old football games all the time. ESPN Classic shows old events of all types. Just because I know who will win the game doesn't necessarily mean that I'm not entertained by the sport.

Netflix has an opportunity to fill that niche. Sports content owners charge billions to air an event live, but then typically never air that sport ever again. It is lost to time. Sometimes, they may release a DVD of an event. Netflix could be a new home for previously played sports. I would sit down and watch replays of old Olympics or college football or the X Games or Rugby matches.
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Old January 31 2013, 12:09 AM   #38
Temis the Vorta
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Re: House of Cards (Netflix)

See, that's exclusionary. In order to make the most money, you need to have a broad spectrum advertising plan.
Not in the wonderful new digital world, it's all about narrowcasting and precise targetting now. The old mass market/Neilsens model is doomed. DOOMED!

If you target only those who already have Netflix, you gain nothing.
You gain added loyalty and less likelihood that they will cancel their subscriptions. The first job of a company like Netflix is to retain customers; then their job is to add customers. This is because the cost of adding a new customer is always greater than the cost of retaining one - it's the ounce of prevention/pound of cure idea.

I have no real idea what their marketing plan is, but it's possible that their target is only current Netflix subscribers (and Hollywood industry types). It probably does go beyond that, but they could have a very focused strategy based on affinities for premium serialized storytelling; dark political thrillers; Kevin Spacey fans; etc. I don't just mean targetting them within Netflix, but all over the internet. For instance, Kevin Spacey's Facebook page, or politico.com, etc.

Your idea about streaming old sports games sounds viable. I know new, live sports is a very pricey business but I'm sure there's an audience for baseball games from when current Netflix customers were kids, that they'd watch for nostalgia, or games from before you were born, etc. There's gotta be something like that already, and sure enough...http://www.freewebs.com/vintagesportsvid/ - doesn't look exactly legal, but it's the general idea.

The rights to that stuff should be pretty cheap, and it's the kind of niche audience stuff that Netflix should keep piling up. The gating factor is probably just staff time. Can you imagine all the specific tastes that they could be catering to? It must be endless.

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Old January 31 2013, 01:46 AM   #39
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Re: House of Cards (Netflix)

Temis the Vorta wrote: View Post
There's gotta be something like that already, and sure enough...http://www.freewebs.com/vintagesportsvid/ - doesn't look exactly legal, but it's the general idea.
As I mentioned, ESPN3.

I was able to watch several college football games that I had missed later in the week, in their entirety. I could fast forward and pause and everything.
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Old January 31 2013, 06:11 AM   #40
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Re: House of Cards (Netflix)

I'm a big Kevin Spacey fan, and it looks like this series is going to give him a lot of scenes to absolutely chew to pieces.

If nothing else, I'll give it a whirl on that merit alone.
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Old January 31 2013, 08:14 PM   #41
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Re: House of Cards (Netflix)

PS, I checked out Chosen on Crackle. Looks okay, but now that I'm used to not watching ads every 15 minutes, I can't go back, or it would take something pretty amazing to get me to do that. Sorry Milo, see ya on LA Noir or whatever they change the name to now that they're getting sued by the video game.
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Old January 31 2013, 08:29 PM   #42
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Re: House of Cards (Netflix)

So, how much time will Netflix give these original programs to determine whether they are a success or a failure? With regular broadcast TV, you base rating on how many people watched when it airs. With something like Netflix, there's no real incentive to watch a new show right away. I have lots of things in my queue that I want to watch before I watch House of Cards, but that doesn't mean I won't eventually get to it.
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Old January 31 2013, 09:40 PM   #43
Temis the Vorta
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Re: House of Cards (Netflix)

Since this is such a new distribution model, they'll probably be patient and just see what the viewing pace is like for a show like this. The downside is that they'd have no real incentive to tell us what they're finding. Anyway, they're scheduled for two seasons of the show so that should give them a lot of data.

And then they can also use Arrested Development to see if there's a comedy vs. drama difference, and use Hemlock Grove to see if genre stuff plays out differently. Personally, I binge view comedy the most, genre stuff maybe somewhat less, but would be most likely to pace my viewing of a political drama.

They'll also look at the rates of new subscriptions and subscription cancellation around the time of a new series launch, vs usual patterns. These shows pay for themselves by attracting new subscribers and preventing cancellations, so any deviation from the expected can be credited to the new show (assuming everything else about their service is "normal" during that time.) But this is something else they won't tell us about, except maybe in generalities if the numbers are very good.

Beyond all this, there's the brand-building impact of a high-profile series starring Kevin Spacey. Netflix needs to keep building credibility with Hollywood (they are inundating deadline.com with ads for the show now) for future development efforts, so regardless of how well it does with customers, that's still important.

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Old January 31 2013, 09:44 PM   #44
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Re: House of Cards (Netflix)

Temis the Vorta wrote: View Post
Since this is such a new distribution model, they'll probably be patient and just see what the viewing pace is like for a show like this. The downside is that they'd have no real incentive to tell us what they're finding. Anyway, they're scheduled for two seasons of the show so that should give them a lot of data.

And then they can also use Arrested Development to see if there's a comedy vs. drama difference, and use Hemlock Grove to see if genre stuff plays out differently. Personally, I binge view comedy the most, genre stuff maybe somewhat less, but would be most likely to pace my viewing of a political drama.
Oh, it's definitely an experiment. I guess what I'm wondering about is at what point they will decide to order more episodes or to cancel. How long do you wait for people to watch the first season (or second, in this case) before you determine whether its worth making more?
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Old January 31 2013, 09:54 PM   #45
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Re: House of Cards (Netflix)

I don't think they have a reason to care if people watch the show, per se. They don't get paid on a per-view basis, but by attracting new subscribers/forestalling cancellations, and that's something they can see a difference in right away.

The ideal series for them might be a show that nobody watches - but makes everyone think "I wanna watch that!" and either makes them subscribe or stops them from cancelling. (Realistically, if they never watch the show, at some point they will forget it exists, and then it will have no further value as glue to keep them subscribing.)

Hmm, they can see whether we add the show to our Instant Queue. So that counts, because it shows that we value it. Add the show to your queue and don't stress about when you watch it. They probably know the relationship between your queue length and the likelihood you will cancel your subscription. A queue with a lot of stuff in it is less likely to be abandoned. They should also be able to tell which shows are "sticky" just by sitting in your queue, unwatched, and how long the effect lasts. Damn, they must know a lot about us, now I feel paranoid!
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