Netflix announces a new strategic proposal for the year 2022, investing in programs that open the doors to other worlds: franchises that combine the world of cinema and streaming as a survival for the new demands of its consumers.
Before starting a new year, Netflix announced to its followers through Twitter that 2022 was going to be a tourist route through new worlds, that “in the first months of 2022 we are going to visit a few universes” thanks to a careful selection of premieres that will expand the company’s line of business through franchises.
After a 2020 that opened the doors to the “streaming war” making it clear that this would be the new favorite channel for audiovisual content consumers, the competition is becoming more and more demanding today and catalogs are becoming more powerful and exclusive. Thanks to this, streaming companies need to invest more and more in programs that open windows to other worlds and to new strategic business axes.
Within this competition that some call “streaming wars”, Netflix has in its favor the time that it has been in the market for a long time and the experience that this time has given them; they have spent a lot of time licensing content and learning from their customers’ consumption patterns. This has been one of the reasons that has motivated them to conquer Hollywood with the tools that elevated the world’s leading film companies.
Why a franchise system? When franchises succeed, they manage to sustain a narrative and entertainment ecosystem through countless platforms, proposals and languages. At a time when economic investment in content is increasingly high, that one project illuminates another with certain guarantees is worth its weight in gold.
The reorganization of companies around these assets has been particularly evident in the wake of the digital acceleration that fueled the pandemic. The benefits are obvious. They have a fundamental influence on the perception of the brand, as they are recognizable properties by the public.
“Netflix has a long way to go to achieve the kind of massive franchises that traditional Hollywood studios are known for, but we’re getting closer. We’ve made progress with Stranger Things and other properties, of course compared to Harry Potter and Star Wars there’s a long way to go “, says Reed Hastings, CEO of Netflix regarding the company’s new expansion philosophy, who a year ago had already made it clear how important franchises were within the company’s content strategy, which seems already to bear fruit.
This is demonstrated by the investment of more than 200 million that Netflix made in the film Red Notice, which has not only been justified by its first results (it is already the most watched film in the history of the company) but also by those it can generate in the future (there are talks for a sequel).
On the other hand, from a financial point of view, risks are reduced and the chances of success are increased, since they represent an added value for the consumer, since the possibilities are extended to new content of their liking.
Additionally, franchises have what Alison Herman calls “visceral power,” a deep emotional bond that makes them an excellent antidote to the temptation to leave the service.
In the realm of franchises and intellectual property, majors have a huge advantage. Having the possibility of pulling known properties has increased the competitiveness of platforms such as Disney + or HBO Max, counteracting their main weakness: a lower volume of original content releases.
The franchises of the future that can afford to combine the 2 windows, film and digital, will have at their disposal an ecosystem of narrative dependencies on two levels. The cinema will cover. The streaming, the depth.