Netflix is laser-focused on creating its own original content, and that seems to be exactly what its audience wants, according to research by financial analysts at Raymond James.
In an analyst’s note Wednesday, Raymond James showed research it had conducted on subscriber behaviour in August.
When asked in a survey to name their primary reasons for using Netflix, 31% of US subscribers cited original content.
While this number might not be surprising in itself, it is significantly more than the 23% who said they used Netflix as a substitute for TV service, and close to the 36% who answered they used it primarily for movies (you could select more than one option in the survey).
Netflix seems to view “originals” as a big part of its future, and these numbers suggest that’s a good bet.
Earlier this year, Netflix’s head of content, Ted Sarandos, said Netflix’s appetite for original content was only growing. And when asked what Netflix would do if cable companies stopped licensing shows to them, CEO Reed Hastings replied “just do more originals.”
This attitude suggests the Netflix of the future will look, most likely, like HBO on steroids.
Last year, original content accounted for 10% of Netflix’s content budget — but that number seems set to increase.
Morgan Stanley estimates that studios who are “vertically integrated,” the ones that have a huge stake in the future of cable television, represent about 30% of Netflix’s content spending — and only 15% if you take out major deals with Disney and CBS.
If those numbers converge toward each other, Raymond James’ research suggests Netflix subscribers might welcome it. This is good news for Netflix,
especially since these cable companies are becoming more reluctant to deal with a company that could one day kill them.
Sarandos has previously said Neflix’s “goal is to become HBO faster than HBO can become us.” And now it seems Netflix’s subscribers actually favour movies and original content over licensed TV.
Perhaps an HBO-like Netflix is exactly what they want.
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