Netflix moves into commerce to monetize consumers

The ability to bring movie magic to life, from theme parks to retail stores, worked wonders for The Walt Disney Company, and now Netflix is ​​waving its own wand over its content in a bid to boost the service’s profile. transmission, monetize its subscriber base and reinvigorate the market. brand at a time when it is facing the most difficult business environment in its history.

This, as the streaming media giant announced on Tuesday (October 11) the opening of an immersive media experience called Netflix at The Grove, which will open to the public in Los Angeles’ eponymous shopping and entertainment district on Thursday (October 13). Inside, curious users/shoppers/customers will be introduced to merchandise related to the show and “experiential photo-ready vignettes featuring life-size versions of notable Netflix characters, including Vecna ​​from ‘Strange things‘, the iconic Young-Hee doll from ‘squid game‘, Queen Charlotte’s throne and more,” the company said.

It’s questionable whether Netflix’s push into physical retail is more of a hype than strategic expansion. What is not in doubt is that the streaming giant lost ground in 2022 and is looking for ways to inspire its estimated 220 million subscribers to stay engaged and subscribed.

See also: The addition of theaters to Netflix suggests that the content is more important than the place

Described as a pop-up window, it’s a large 10,000-square-foot one. Netflix said it will offer “a wide range of limited-edition items from some of Netflix’s most popular titles,” including the “hellfire club raglan shirt and “Palace Arcade” hoodie, the “Inside Bridgerton” book, ‘A Variety of Funko’s Collectible Figures’squid game’ Y ‘Strange things'” and select products from popular titles like “Gabby’s dollhouse.”

Netflix head of live experiences Greg Lombardo said in a statement that “this felt like the next, most organic step in continuing our growth and bringing together Netflix’s most beloved shows in a whole new way,” taking advantage of pop-ups. earlier ones like those in Japan and smaller installations springing up from coast to coast.

It’s the latest in a series of off-screen moves Netflix has made to cement its place in viewers’ hearts and wallets during the inflation-induced “great unsubscribe” by taking a page out of Netflix’s playbook. Disney that places the brand in the rarefied ranks. from major Hollywood studios.

The ‘blockbuster pivot’

The movement was almost inevitable.

“It may be time for Netflix to host its next Blockbuster pivot, but it needs to do more than just follow the pack and throw ads into the mix,” Karen Webster of PYMNTS wrote earlier this year. “Or just add content on top of the content you already have on the platform as some suggest, to develop and expand your core. Both strategies consider Netflix content to be their primary asset.”

He added, however, that Netflix’s main asset is not subscribers or content: “it is the attention of its users. Naturally, all of that is inextricably linked to the content you have on the platform. But to move the needle, Netflix has to monetize its users’ attention in creative and impactful ways.”

The big move market watchers are hoping for is a shoppable Netflix with built-in trading functionality that lets viewers buy that pair of shoes from “Bridgerton” or that car from “The Lincoln Lawyer.” Considering that Amazon Prime Video has yet to fully solve this, a connected and purchasable Netflix could be the “next Blockbuster pivot” when it happens.

See also: How brands can survive the great unsubscribe

In that sense, the broadcaster has just reached an agreement with AMC, Regal and Cinemark theaters in the United States, announcing on October 6 that its crime novel “Glass Onion: A Knives Out Mystery” will have a limited presentation in the three networks for the first time, ahead of the film’s premiere on Netflix in December.

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