Things are looking good for Netflix. In the first quarter of this year, the company reports that it added 2 million subscribers--bringing its total to 29.17 million domestic subscribers. (That's more domestic subscribers than HBO.) The company also reported $1 billion in quarterly revenue--up 17 percent from Q1 of 2012.
The news indicates that the company’s decision to create the original series House of Cards has paid off.
In a post last week, Peter Gasca breaks down the decision making process behind the creation of House of Cards. The show’s success wasn’t a fluke, he explains, but the result of Netflix's decisive and pretty brilliant analysis of data (viewing habits, including preferences, ratings, films viewed etc) generated by subscribers. Gasca wrote:
“What Netflix found was that their subscribers really enjoyed political dramas. They also knew that movies starring Kevin Spacey or directed by David Fincher (Fight Club) seemed to be very popular and highly rated. Using this data intelligence, the company that was in the movie delivery business launched into the movie making business and developed its first exclusive show.”
Voila, House of Cards. A user generated recipe for success. And if Netflix did it once, Gasca points out, they can do it again and again -- in fact, the company already has several shows, influenced by user data, in the works.
Netflix's future looks bright, but things certainly haven’t always been so peachy. Back in September 2011, Netflix was the target of scathing criticism when it raised its cost of subscription, ultimately losing over 1 million customers.